"You can lie down and die, or you can get up and fight, but that's it--there's no turning back." ~ Jon English

Picture me in the labor and delivery room. Never mind...that's nasty. But just imagine, if you will, the look on my doctor's face when I told him I was tired and I didn't want to push anymore. His response still echoes in my mind as I recall one of the most painful, yet rewarding experiences of my life. He said, "It's crunch time, Harriet. You can't stop until this baby is delivered!"

If I had stopped pushing, both my son and I would have been at risk for losing our lives. His 9 lb. 9 oz form (and two weeks premature) was depending on me to take his first breath. And as I looked at him for the first time, I took my own first breath as a mother.

Michael Jordan once played a championship basketball game while he suffered with the stomach flu. As he took the final shot of the game, he practically collapsed into the arms of Scottie Pippen, who guided him back to the bench. In one breath, he was flu-stricken. In the next, he was the NBA champ! That game was his labor and delivery room for his fifth championship.

There was a labor and delivery room that still blows my mind when I think about it today. Jesus, in the Garden of Gethsemane, was under so much pressure that he began to suffer hematohidrosis. Under severe emotional duress, the capillaries surrounding his sweat glands burst, causing both blood and sweat to flow through his pores. He knew what was going to happen, but surely He didn't want to endure it. Yet as He took His last breath, He gave birth to the salvation of BILLIONS, including me, some 2000 years after His death. And as He took His next breath, He was seated in His rightful place on the throne of eternity, knowing that the pain He endured would bring life to many in the millennium to come.

I would go through the pain again to birth my son. I'm sure MJ would go through the pain again to get that coveted championship ring. Thank God Jesus went through His pain so I wouldn't have to go through hell here on earth, then deal with it for all eternity. In all three instances, lying down and dying was an option, but fighting through death to get to a more eternal reward required some moxie and a push that cannot be gained in ease, relaxation or quiet.

What are some of your most difficult moments that garnered the best reward? Tell me about them!