Monthly Archives: June 2013

The Love of Angelina Martinez Miranda

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Love is the most powerful thing in the world. It has the power to create life and to sustain life, to bring forth life and to heal life. A beautiful description of love can be found in 1 Corinthians 13: 4-8:

Amor es sufrido, es benigno;
el amor no tiene envidia, el amor no es jactancioso, no se envanece;
no hace nada indebido, no busca lo suyo, no se irrita, no guarda rencor;
no se goza de la injusticia, mas se goza de la verdad.
Todo lo sufre, todo lo cree, todo lo espera, todo lo soporta.
El amor nunca deja de ser.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”

I see God’s love in Angelina Martinez Miranda.

I recently met Angelina at a Midwifery Today conference in Oregon. For one entire day, I sat at her feet and listened to her speak in Spanish about the importance of love. Love is the foundation of truly good relationships between a midwife and the families she serves.

Jane & Angelina

Angelina Martinez Miranda,
traditional Mexican midwife
who has attended more than 10,000 births!

I marveled at how Angelina’s traditional midwifery techniques lined up so well with what I had been learning about care for childbearing women from my modern textbooks. Her faith in God, her love for families, and her knowledge of the practice of traditional midwifery were all deeply inspiring to me.

I keep Angelina’s example in mind when I seek to serve families as a midwife. The midwifery model of care is a wonderful way to show God’s love to families. Good midwives listen to mothers, reassure them when they are afraid, and honor their free will, encouraging them to learn about childbirth and make their own informed decisions throughout their childbearing years.

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In Praise of my Mother

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My mother is gifted. She is an artist who works in various media: calligraphy, watercolor, music. She’s a beautiful singer. My mother also has the gift of giving gifts. Gift-giving is her love language. She’s always very thoughtful about choosing gifts that delight me.

Recently, I’ve been thinking about all the treasure that is stored up in heaven for my mother. She has given so much of her life in service to others that I am amazed. Even recently, I’ve watched her conscientiously prepare Sunday school lessons for young children and Bible studies for a group of older women who come to meet weekly in her home. Last week, I watched her get up early every morning to make meals for teenagers who came from Arizona to stay with her and work at a MegaSports camp sponsored by our church for the youth of the city of Vallejo.

My mother has been through many hard times in her life, but through it all, she has not given up. For a season in her life, she was a single parent, and she worked hard to take care of her children. She returned to school as an adult and completed a bachelor’s degree and a teaching credential. Both before, during, and after completing her education, she was a dedicated teacher–and still is. She pours love into children and inspires them with her creativity. She inspires me.

Two years ago, my mother was diagnosed with stomach cancer. This was a frightening time for me, when I didn’t know if I would lose her, but I was so thankful when the radiation treatment — the power of light, the power of God — eliminated the lymphoma. I knew that the Lord had heard our prayers.

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The miracle of my mother’s healing filled my heart with praise and thankfulness to God. I am so glad that the woman who carried me in her womb, gave birth to me and breastfed me, who cherished me and taught me how to read and write and sing and draw and cook and clean and pray every night before sleeping and make my bed every morning when I woke up …  is alive and well. I love you, dear little Mommy of mine!