Wednesday, December 8, 2010

I love you was whispered

The other morning my daughter was home sick from school. I was busy catching up on some writing projects.

My daughter came over to the computer and climbed on my lap. Her arms wrapped around my neck and she gave me a kiss on the check, with a whisper of "I love my mommy."

Then I heard her say, "Hey my mommy doesn't care." And she reached up and grasped my face into her hands. "Mommy look at me." I looked down at her and then looked back at what I was working on.

"No, Mommy, look at me." She put her hand so I couldn't see the computer and with the other hand held on to my face. She looked me in the eye and smiled. "I love you mommy."

I grinned and gave her a kiss. "I love you too." I turned to go back to what I had been doing, but she was determined. She covered my eyes so I couldn't see the screen and made eye contact again and said, "Mommy, look at me." When I did, she smiled again and said, "I love you," followed with a kiss.

I looked back at her and said I love you too. This time though I didn't turn away. I enjoyed the moment with my little girl.

Then what went through my mind is when I come to God during prayer and devotional time instead of being distracted by everything around me, do I just seek His face and bask in His love? Just lay everything down and seek Him with all my heart. To let Him just show me the height, width, depth and length of the love He has for me?

Sadly, I have to say no. I do spend time seeking and listening for His voice, but life can be so distracting.

Those precious moments with my little girl made me desire to also bask in the love my heavenly Father has for me.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Alone?

I love to be out and about staying in contact with my family and friends. There is one thing I have come to discover about myself though,whenever I'm out and about too much, I start getting frazzled. My emotions become extreme over the issues of life.

That's when I need to reel myself in and spend some time alone, doing projects, writing, reading and time in prayer.

What has become a priority in my life is, to be more on top of allowing myself the alone time, I so desperately need to rejuvenitate before I become an emotional mess. As I'm learning to do this it creates more of a balance in all areas.

One of my favorite stories in the Bible is, when Jesus calls the disciples to go off to the other side of the lake. He doesn't join them, but goes off by Himself and spends time in prayer. The disciples soon become in desperate need of Him because they are in the middle of a terrifying storm. Even though Jesus could see them "straining at the row",still, Jesus doesn't run right out and fix the storm and then go back to His prayer time. Since He doesn't go out until the fourth watch it appears He finishes His conversation with the Father and then heads out to help the disciples.

Oh, to be so close to the Father and realize how important those conversations with Him really are. When life is calling out, "do this," "do that," or "this needs to be done yesterday," and on and on, the time spent with Him calms the storms, the voices calling out to us.

It's a time to "cast our cares upon Him," to receive the "peace that passes all understanding through Jesus Christ our Lord". To ask for the wisdom He promises to give us if we ask. To be filled with the wonderful fruits that can only come from Him, love, peace, joy, understanding, longsuffering....

The calls of life can be so loud. The voice of the Father can calm them.

I guess in reality, I don't really ever spend time alone, because He promises to never leave us or forsake us. The times when I find myself without someone I can see, I know He is there with me.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Once Upon a Christmas!

"Once Upon a Christmas" is projected to be in our hands November 9, 2010. This is an exciting project with 20 short stories written by, Sharon Bernash Smith, Rosanne Croft and Linda Reinhardt.

I wanted to take a moment to share something with you about one of the stories in this book. The story is very dear to my heart, "Only One Wish for Me". It was one of the first I wrote as a young believer. During a time of prayer, I asked for a Christmas story to write, to enable me to reach out to others and share, about this special love and gift I had received through Jesus. That afternoon I wrote out a short story about Grandpa Schooster who has been a delight in my imagination since that day.

I was so excited about this story. I had everyone I could read it. And then, one year, I lengthened the story and it was performed as a play at our church. The following year a group of us brought the play to adult care facilities. We had an absolute blast.

It has been a prayer of my heart to see this story in book form. It was first written about twenty years ago. I had no idea how to get a story of this length in print. Now, this Christmas, God has expanded the answer to that simple prayer, for a short story to reach out to others, to now be in book form.

I have a desire to talk to anyone who is reading this blog today, to try to translate this to a long awaited desire of your heart. Sometimes, it seems as though a prayer is unanswered or the answer is just plain, "no". God is listening. I don't know how He plans to have the desires of your heart play out in your life, or how He plans to answer them, but please don't give up. Have faith.

Believe me when I tell you, there are many things I have prayed about and still praying about, that I thought looked hopeless, only to see nothing is ever hopeless when I put it in the hands of the one who created me. Sent His Son to die for me. Believing in Jesus gives us the gift of ETERNAL salvation.

I know He took care of my Eternity and I know He can take care of my today.

I wanted to share a short synopsis of "Only One Wish for Me".

It’s the first Christmas without Grandpa Schooster for Andrew and Marie. Along with Marie’s daughter, Caroline, they search the house for his special Christmas decorations and stumble upon his old journal.
Much to their amazement, they read all about their first Christmas with Grandpa Schooster after their own parents died and he takes on the responsibility of raising his grandchildren, whom he adores.
He had taken them up to his cabin in the mountains. Upon arriving, he discovers the children have asked for a gift that only God can give to them. What could this gift be?
Together Andrew, Marie, and Caroline enjoy once again the story of how Grandpa spends the night discovering a gift that cannot be put under a tree.

We have some events planned for the months of November and December. Stay tuned and I will place the schedule right here.

God bless you.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Who Cares!

December, once again, found us dealing with the repercussions of the recession. I was so discouraged I spent an entire day crying.

Then a thought went through my mind. What am I crying for? What's it going to do? Who cares if I cry?

Not to many days later, I was looking in the fridge. It was pretty empty. "Lord, I'm going to need to go grocery shopping." I didn't want to spend any money because I didn't know when or if money was coming in again. I had enough for rent, bills, etc. but wanted to hold on to it as long as I could.

I needed to go and get my daughter from school. I had about five minutes. The doorbell rang just as I was preparing to leave. I opened it to a dear friend of mine who I saw at church or other groups. But rarely did we stop at each other's homes. I felt a bit awkward because I needed to leave.

I invited her to join me. She said, "No, I have groceries." I offered for her to stay until I came back and she said, "No, I have groceries and some of them need to get in the fridge." I didn't know what to do.

Then she explained she had been at Trader Joe's and felt she was to buy us groceries. She had groceries for us in the car. I stood there in amazement. I had just prayed about groceries.

Our families don't normally eat together, but she had bought everything my family likes. And not only that, but I had a few events to attend and in the bags were things I specifically needed to bring.

After bringing the bags in, putting stuff in the fridge and thanking her profusely, I left to go pick up my daughter.

Though I didn't hear an audible voice. I clearly heard the words in my mind, "Remember when you asked, who cares? I CARE." I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt whose voice I heard.

GOD CARES!

I just need to say in those moments where you feel alone and cry unheard tears. God never sleeps. He never slumbers. He watches over you, night and day. He CARES and loves you so much.

Friday, October 8, 2010

It's been ages since I wrote on this blog. I wanted to share with you my fiction version of a wonderful story I witnessed years ago. I hope it encourages you and helps you to have faith through whatever may be going on in your own life. Prayer IS a powerful thing.

The following is a fiction story based on the true story of one woman’s prayer vigil to reach her son the only way she knew how.

A CUP OF HOT CHOCOLATE

I heard the front door open. I moved quick as possible from the back room to the entry way, but just as I got there, I heard the click of my son’s door from upstairs and then the sliding of the chain lock that he had recently attached to his door.

I wandered back to the kitchen, disappointed once again, a missed opportunity to speak with my son. The house that use to fill with laughter when my blond haired blue eyed boy would come home now seemed to become cold and empty. I began the preparations for dinner with the hope he may join us.

Several hours later I had the chance to hand my son the handset to our phone through the narrow slit of the door. That meant he would be leaving soon. I had no idea when he would return. To confront this behavior, could possibly mean, he would turn up missing for a day or two. At least this way, he came home, and I knew where he was, even if it was only for short periods of time.

I had no idea how long it would be before he slipped back out. So I moved to the kitchen to do my special nighttime ritual I’d started soon after his behavior had changed many months ago. I put water on the stove to boil and pulled out a package of hot chocolate powder, and then I started my prayers. “Lord, keep him safe from harm. Bring him back to you and me. I pray he knows and believes in the love we have for him. He has to believe it Lord.”

I poured the powder into his favorite cup, followed by the hot water. As I added the marshmallows and sprinkles I continued in prayer.

“Lord, be with Him tonight. Speak to his heart. Draw him near to You. Please keep him save.”

With care I went up the stairs to his room, speaking to God each step of the way. After I gave a gentle knock on the door, I waited and then gave a sigh of relief when I heard him remove the chain from the lock. The door opened just enough for me to pass the cup into his hand.

“Here’s some hot chocolate for you. I love you, son.”

“Thanks,” was his reply, click. The connection was gone. Tears filled my eyes as I stared at the closed door. Lord, be with him. I slipped silently back down to the kitchen, wiping at the tears that spilled from my eyes. Shortly afterward I heard him leave the house for the night.

This little ritual went on for months. My only connection was a cup of hot chocolate until one day I heard the front door open.

As usual, I moved as quick as I could to the entry way, only this time bam. I ran right smack into him. “Mom, watch where you’re going okay?” I apologized. He had a friend with him. I expected them disappear up to his room, but instead they followed me into the kitchen. He emptied a bag as he spoke about the wonderful food they had discovered. It was vegetarian.

“Eating meat is gross, Mom.”

“Oh.” Okay, whatever you say, just thank you God that he’s talking to me again. He’s actually smiling. What was that I just heard? Laughter? Excusing myself for a minute, I left the room, tears of joy pouring down my checks. Oh Jesus, he’s laughing. His eyes are bright again. It’s a miracle.

I returned to the kitchen. I didn’t want to miss one moment of this time with him. Through their conversations I learned they went to a coffee shop set up for kids. Some guy told them how much God loved them.

“Remember when we thought he was a Jesus freak?” my son asked his friend. Laughter followed. “Mom, he talked like you and your sister.” He rolled his eyes. A smile followed. “Found out you were right, Mom.”

I bit at my lip trying desperately trying not to turn into a balling baby.

“Hey Mom, could you make us one of your special hot chocolates?”

I could only nod as I turned the water on to boil and took out a package of hot chocolate powder. While waiting for his drink, my son spent the time explaining to his friend about my wonderful nightly ritual.

I prayed earnestly. “Thank you Lord, for being with him, for protecting him and bringing him back to You and me.”

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Weary Mountain Climber

Have you ever felt like asking, "What next?", but then found yourself, afraid to find out what could be next?

Ever watch your dream play out in another persons life? Or wondered why it seems so easy for some and your scrambling through the day, frazzled and exhausted? Have you ever just been plain weary?

Those times are tough.

Ever been so tired in your heart that it's hard to decipher a bump from a mountain? Especially when you hit the bump while in the middle of climbing a mountain.

Mountains come in many forms, relationships, illness, finances, jobs. And in the midst of the climb, a very small bump can make it seem so hard, leaving a person left without an ounce of emotional energy or strength to deal with the very next step in life.

I've discovered in moments like this, Jesus says for the weary to come to Him, and He will give the weary rest.

When bumps in the road, seem to be mountains, because of the weariness you are experiencing, take the time to sit in His presence. Sometimes, there is an immediate release. Sometimes He gives what is needed for the next phase of the road.

No matter what He does, I can guarantee it will be exactly what you need.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

From the Cellars of Choice - My Only One

When up against an unplanned pregancy it can be hard to think ahead to what the ramifications our choices at this time can make.

Many women, years later, discover they aborted their only child. It's a heartwrenching realization when you are on this side of the fence.

Here is a story from a dear lady who is living with that experience.


It was 22 years ago that I heard the news that I was going to have a baby.
At first, I was really excited. I’d always wanted children and the dream
of becoming a mother was finally going to be a reality.

Yet at the same time, my life was like riding a roller coaster, especially
in the relationship department. I don’t like riding roller coasters, but
I’d been on this one for several months and Valentines’ Day had carried us
to the top of the tracks. Well, we all know that a roller coaster does not
remain in position long enough to enjoy the view.

When I told the baby’s father that I was pregnant, he was also excited
until I told him I didn’t want to marry him. Well, then our emotions were
carried by runaway wheels.

The baby’s father would drive down the street and yell from his car, You
better get an abortion or get a good attorney. Get an abortion? I didn’t
believe in abortion? I had no clue why, but I just didn’t. And, get a good
attorney? Well, so much for that relationship. It was over at that point
and I was in the pit of despair and confusion.

At that time in my life I could barely pay my bills. I did have a good
job, but was concerned about not being able to get a promotion. I didn’t
want to let my family down. And, I did not know Jesus.

Well, unaware of their biases, I sought counsel at a well-known agency.
They examined me first and planted a deceitful seed. The nurse told me
that I would have a difficult time having a baby and then she ushered me
next door to see the counselor. She only presented one option--abortion.

And there is something I will never forget: I told this lady I didn’t
believe in abortion--again, I really didn’t know why. But she said, “You’d
be surprised how many Christian moms bring their daughters in for
abortions.” That was so weird to me. I’d given her no reason to think I
was a Christian, I wasn’t. So, why did she say that?

And then a friend’s friend told me that she’d had an abortion and it
wasn’t a big deal. Well it wasn’t long after that that I chose to deprive
my child life on earth and to deprive myself of my lifetime dream.

You know I have heard countless reasons from people for why they’d
choose an abortion – but, I am here to tell you that abortion is not a
solution to any problem. It’s kind of like cutting off your leg because
you have an ingrown toenail. That might solve the toe problem, but now you
can’t walk, run, or play.

Abortion is an evil. An evil that flashes false rays of light in a
person’s life when they are in the midst of the storm of an unplanned
pregnancy. Those involved are led to believe that they’ll just be able to
go on with their lives as if nothing happened, as if the pregnancy never
occurred. That’s just not true.

After my abortion, I existed in a cloud of emotional numbness. I don’t
remember getting down from the abortion table. I don’t remember walking to
the car. I just remember working as much as I possibly could and I managed
to get involved in another destructive relationship. And, I drank a lot.

A year later God began to get rid of those numbing clouds. I began to
attend a bible-believing church and three months later received Jesus as
my Lord and Savior. I am thankful that He changes lives, but He had just
begun. A year after receiving Christ, He called me to volunteer at a
Crisis Pregnancy Center. He had planted a baby Christian where He could
indeed use my wretched past for His glory, but He had also planted me
where I had to face the horrendous truths surrounding my abortion.

I cannot tell you how it feels to know that my little 8-week baby had
fingers and toes. She had a heartbeat, and I believe she could feel the
pain of that abortion.

I believe that if one person would have shown me photos of fetal
development, or if I had the opportunity to see my baby on an ultrasound,
or if one person had offered genuine support, I would probably be
attending my daughter's college graduation this spring. I believe I
wouldn't have had to mourn the loss of motherhood because I would not have
the joy of conceiving another child.

While the regret of that fateful spring day remains, joy has come. I've
experienced a depth of healing that only Jesus can give--through the gift
of relationship with Him and the gift of His healing Word. This joy grows
when I have privilege of facilitating healing Bible studies for other
women who suffer the pain that abortion wreaks in the lives of women.

In the U.S., approximately 1.2 million+ abortions occur every year. It's
offered to women as a solution for an inconvenient pregnancy. It's forced
upon women by abusive and selfish boyfriends or parents. It's marketed to
women as if it's no big deal. Post-abortion pain is cast off by abortion
proponents as a myth. Physical complications are covered up.

Abortion IS a big deal and it's not nice. It's cruel. It doesn't provide a
greater quality of life. It kills life - physically, emotionally,
spiritually.

Unplanned pregnancy is not easy. I know that. But, carrying the baby to
term-- either to parent or to place for adoption--is a choice that bestows
dignity and value to the woman and to her baby. There's difficult
consequences for any choice she makes, but the consequences of giving life
are much kinder, much easier to live with.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A fathers voice from the Cellar's of Choice

I'm very honored and blessed to be able to share this story from a Dad's perspective of the choice of abortion. It's not often people take the time to realize abortion not only affects women and the life of a child, but it affects the Dad's.

A Dad's testimony
I was asked some time ago to put my story down in writing and typical of men wanting to avoid pain from the past I have found other things to occupy my time. Today is no exception except that I am done putting off the important things that I need to do.

In the early 90’s I was not a normal mid twenties guy in the sense of social and emotional maturity. I was floating around doing what I wanted and not giving consideration to things that did not affect my daily life, including how my life affected those around me.

I was sitting on the bed with my girl friend (call her Lois) at the time when my previous girl friend (call her Beth) called and told me she was pregnant. My reaction to the news must have been obvious because even before I got off the phone Lois was saying to abort it. I told Beth we would talk about it. I really liked Lois and did not want to break up our relationship, as new as it was. Lois was adamant.

After talking with Beth, we decided to make a trip to Portland to get an abortion. It seemed like a simple thing. I really cared about Beth and didn't want her to be hurt but I also didn't want to break up with Lois. I knew that I could be easily swayed so I asked my brother to ride along with us to keep from really having to talk about what we were doing.

I also knew that I was half of the equation and because I cared about Beth I did not want her to go through the procedure by herself. I went into the room and held her hand the whole time. (Even as I write this I am back there and feeling lightheaded) As soon as the Dr got started I realized we were making the wrong decision. It was supposed to be a convenient way to avoid the hassles that would certainly come about. I was holding Beth’s hand and watching the pain on her face, tears streaming down. When it was done I was told to go to the waiting room because I couldn't go to the recovery room with her. I had to walk through a narrow hallway past the nurse’s station. I was thinking about what had just happened and all of a sudden things went dark. I remember hanging onto the counter to keep myself up and someone grabbing me and asking if I was alright.

The next thing I remember is putting my brother back on a bus for home and that is it.

Have you ever injured yourself and then it feels your body is checking itself out? Like blood is rushing all over to the injured spot, everything slows down you hear your heart beat in your ears and you just feel weird? That is what I am feeling 20 some years later, like I am right there…

I don’t recall the next time I spoke to Beth. I don't remember the three hour car ride back home or even when I started remembering things again. I have no idea how much time I lost. That was my defense mechanism. Sometime later Lois and I moved about five hour’s away and started life in a new town. Not long after getting settled Lois informed me that she was pregnant. I immediately felt the dizziness and recalled the experience of the abortion that despite struggling to ignore was fresh in my mind.

Lois was not going to have a baby no matter what. She had had two hard pregnancies already and was not going to do it again. I gave a little bit of a fight but then gave up knowing it would not do any good. Lois took care of the appointment. I remember the pain in my heart and the helplessness leading up to the time we left for the appointment.
The only thing I remember about the trip to the Drs. Office is that it was dark, so it had to be nighttime.

I went into the procedure room again, to be there with Lois. I was overwhelmed again. I still to this day see the anger and unwillingness on her face to cry or allow the pain to be an issue. After it was done I looked up and saw the remains of my baby being taken away by the nurse in a large beaker type container. I will never forget the color or the loss of what had just happened. Again, I have no recollection of the drive home or even when I started to recognize my surroundings, I don’t remember going to work or functioning at any level. It was like a very long blackout. Lois and I did not have much of a relationship and I moved out sometime later.

What has stood out and had a profound impact on me was the stark difference between the two, one cried and the other got angry. Me I totally blacked out for long time.

A couple years ago I was taking my wife to see a chiropractor and for some reason the building looked familiar. After several visits I started walking around the other floors while my wife was getting adjusted. I realized why it was familiar. I went to the door and realized this was the door Beh and I walked through all those years ago to have an abortion, about 18 years later I was in the same building and now on the same floor.

It felt good to cry and to know that by God’s grace I would get to see my baby again, the very baby that as a father I failed to protect.

There is a reason that I was in the room twice holding the hand of a woman going through with an abortion. Maybe so you could read it today.

Today I am a pro life advocate. I have led post abortion healing classes for men and even though I have received God’s grace and mercy I am constantly sensitive to the ramifications of my actions. I am grateful to have received healing and forgiveness from God. Today, I know why my only child does not act like an only child.

Let me tell you that, whether we admit it or not men are affected by abortion, by not protecting their babies, by avoiding responsibility, by taking the easy way out. I can assure you that abortion is not the easy way out.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

God Tossed Pennies

I just wanted to share again the story about "pennies". So many are going through such tough times and I hope this is a note of encouragement for you.


My sister and I started going for walks in the morning during the weekdays. One day there was a penny on the ground and I reached down to pick it up. I explained there was a day, not to long ago, that I wouldn't have picked it up, but instead I'd leave it for someone else who may need it.

But one day, I was convicted of appreciating even the smallest blessings that may be in front of me. God knows if I need a penny or not, so I decided to start picking them up, thank Him for it and all the other blessings He gives to me.

A few days later, during another one of our walks, we were talking about a burden my sister was carrying. I suddenly remembered the other thing I heard about picking up a penny. On the coin is the words, "In God We Trust". Whenever a person finds a penny, they are to confess whatever they are not trusting God with in their life. And then say "In God I Trust." So after heaing that story I started doing just that.

We went no more than five feet when I heard my sister give a happy sound as she reached over and picked up a penny. "In God We Trust," she called out.

Through the week, on our walks, we both continued to share things weighing heavy on our hearts with each other and throughout the day we would pick up whatever pennies we found in front of us and make a decision to Trust God.

One day in particular, I just fretted and fretted over something. I found more pennies that day than I'd seen in a long time.

The next day, on our daily excursion, we talked and prayed about our issues that still hadn't been resolved. We had some big burdens on our minds.


After praying, we noticed on the side of the road, there was a PILE of pennies. I am so serious, it was a pile. We didn't care who was watching. We stooped down and picked up penny after penny, saying "In God we trust, in God we trust"...

Don't wait to pick up a penny, my prayer for you is "In God you trust".

Monday, March 29, 2010

From the Cellars of Choice - Peeling back a layer

Sometimes the affects of abortion can be hidden deep within, memories, emotions, even a lack of remembering the events of the day at all. And then one day out of nowhere, something will cause a trigger and out of the deep recesses of the cellar, the person will be brought back to their abortion experience.

Also, woman and men who go through a healing process soon discover, it is like peeling back an onion. It is done in layers. Once the wound is reopened the healing process is done a gentle layer at a time.

I think the following story will give you a better idea of what a man or woman deals with after abortion.

This is part one of a layer of another persons story;

When I became a Christian, I was so grateful. I had such a big gaping wound in my heart that I couldn’t fill and didn’t know why. After I received His forgiveness that hole was gone, He forgave my ABORTIONS! I mean it really meant more than I can say to know Jesus died on a cross for the sins of the whole world and that included, ME!

Although I didn’t understand how He could love me in such a way, I believed it, and was filled with such joy. I knew He forgave me, but I believed if anyone else ever found out about me, they would leave me or not want me involved in their activities.

At church, I had lots of friends, served in ministry, but if they knew…well, one day I signed up to go through a healing group. The first night, women I never wanted to know of my secret, walked in, they were part of the group. I almost died. I convinced myself that although they were there for the same reason, when they heard my story they’d hate me. Nobody could be as bad as me, no one.

After the first meeting I ducked out the door and rushed to my car avoiding any conversations. A friend of mine called out for me. I couldn’t hide.

Instead of rejecting me, the women from the group and I stood outside of the building we were meeting at and formed a circle. We prayed for each other and after hugging each other goodbye, I realized I was safe. Jesus not only forgave me, but He gave me a safe place to heal from my decision that caused the life of another person to be lost.

During the group, I came to a point of forgiving myself. It was a hard thing to do.

Although I am forgiven and I have forgiven myself, I still wish I’d never had abortions. I wish I could see the faces of those children and they could have had a chance at life.

And I still had another hard thing to do…forgive the father of my children.

The hardest was the first one. I met him when I was seventeen. I was pretty immature and a virgin. He was older and had previous relationships, even engaged a couple of times. I didn’t even know how to begin to have a relationship.

I ended up going against my morals and had sex with him one night. I have no idea why I made that decision. I remember afterward being so disappointed. I had wanted to wait until I was married.

We went out for a hamburger afterward and he wanted to clarify, I wouldn’t hold him accountable for anything because I gave up my virginity, like marriage or whatever.

I should have dumped him then, but I was a shy, insecure girl in this relationship. I was in way over my head.

When I wound up pregnant just before graduation, his only concern…his dad would be mad at him. He said I needed to get an abortion.

My greatest concern was, I would get kicked out of the house and where would I go, if he wasn’t supporting me? I didn’t have a job or have a clue what to do. Besides, some girls at school had abortions and they seemed just fine.

So I went. My memories are vague, except for the extreme terror that I was going to die during the procedure and I was so lonely. He sat out in the waiting room reading a magazine. I can’t tell you all of the details, except I couldn’t wait until this horrible thing happening to me was over, and I wanted to go home.

Afterward, I wanted to cry, be held, but there was no one there to understand. We went to get something to eat. Went to his house where he played basketball and I sat inside on a chair, bewildered. I changed that day. A gaping wound began to grow, but since the abortion was my choice, I didn’t understand where this wound came from.

The relationship ended. He went on to get married, have children and move to another State.

For some reason, I ended up close to his family at different periods of my life. After I became a Christian I used to hang out with his Dad at church and hear all about him. I prayed for my ex boyfriend because that’s what Christians are supposed to do.

I had a long list of painful decisions. He had a family.

After I went through the healing group the first time, I became pregnant and miscarried. My husband and I wanted a child so bad. I came out of the doctor’s office and bumped into my ex’s dad. He wanted to know why I was there. He was very concerned. I wouldn’t tell him. I found out my ex and his wife had just left and he was going or just returned from a mission trip with his oldest son.

His dad showed me pictures of my ex’s two sons as I stood there broken from losing my child.

Soon after, I was watching a video of testimonies about post abortion syndrome, this video is shown in the healing groups. One of the guys looked like my ex. A feeling of hatred came over me so strong I didn’t know what to do. I thought I had forgiven him. God showed me I hadn’t.

That night I prayed to be able to forgive him. I realized it made me angry that he did so well in life. I wanted him to suffer like I had, even more than I did. It made me angry he had children and I didn’t. I held him responsible for allowing me to give him my virginity, especially since he was so careless about the whole thing. I hated him for not caring about me and the child I was carrying. For being more concerned about his Dad being angry, when his Dad’s anger would have been short lived. God showed me the anger rooted in my heart festered every time I heard about him.

As each issue came to the surface, one by one, by the grace of God, I forgave him. It was such a healing and freeing moment. Jesus paid a high price for all the wrong choices I made and my choices affected many lives. Just like my ex’s choices affected mine.

The more I learn about God’s grace and mercy for me, the easier it is to forgive. There is something I’ve learned about forgiveness though. It’s a process. Sometimes, like telling this story, the old anger can rise up, I have to remember and forgive. I’m not going to be a prisoner of his or my actions.

Jesus died on the cross for all of this, and my choice? It's to believe.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Cellars of Choice

My heart breaks over an issue affecting America. It’s the consequences that come from aborting a child and the adverse affects to the men and women of our society.

At the time, having an abortion seems like a solution to the circumstances in a person’s life, only to cause horrible ramifications in the aftermath. Many find themselves grieving the life of their child, alone; after all it was her decision to end her child's life. Each year as the birth date rolls around, she remembers and may try to imagine what her child would look like or what they may be doing at this point of their life.

The grief can run deep. Many don’t even understand they are grieving, covering the pain through the use of alcohol, drugs, food, other compulsions or by getting involved in promiscuous sex or bad relationships and sometimes wind up pregnant...again.

Many choose abortion a second time, a third time, and some even more.

Although having the right to choose abortion, afterward, it can become a secret shame a person carries within every day. For most, the relationship at the time of the abortion has ended, and there are now new friends, who know nothing about the past.

Yes, abortion is legal. In America, a person can choose to end their child's life before it’s born. In America doctors are given money to end the life of a child.

Before I knew the facts about abortion, I thought; too young, no support, finances, loss of boyfriend or family, too old, not the right time, and many other reasons a woman or couple may have, all made sense.

Before a woman even finds out she is pregnant, her child's heart is already beating. The child is already developing. Yet, the reasons above, have given justification to the “legal right” to end the life of a child.

For each person, it’s different. Some very brave men and woman have agreed to anonymously share their stories of the aftermath of abortion here on my blog.

If you are in a place in your life where you may be contemplating this decision, please take some time and read their stories over the next couple of weeks? All of us involved in this would love to protect you from not only hurting your child, but making a decision that will carry with you for the rest of your life.

If you have already chosen abortion I hope, through these testimonies, you will discover there is a road to healing. There are confidential healing groups in your city. If you desire healing, please email me at lindajreinhardt@gmail.com. I will do my best to connect you with a safe group in your area.

And if you have a story of your own, and would like to share it, feel free to send it my way. Everything is kept confident.

Let’s pull back the curtain and take some time to listen. Here is the first testimony.

I am a survivor of sexual abuse, including assault. With these traumas, I felt worthless and less than human and more as an object who had no control over her own life. During my sophomore year in high school, a senior took an interest in me. For the first time someone actually wanted to hear my opinions on life and other matters.
After a year of dating we made the decision for me to become pregnant. He had joined the military, so there would be an income and a way to support a family. Most of all he wanted to take me away from the dysfunctional home life I lived.
The summer between my junior and senior year I became pregnant; however, all our plans backfired and we found ourselves in the midst of a huge crisis.
My parents did not react as we expected and there were threats made against my boyfriend. Phone calls and letters were read and monitored. I was told to let my boyfriend know that I might be pregnant, but never allowed to tell him that I was.
I fought my parents because I wanted this child, had in fact prayed to become pregnant. Then my parents threatened to have him sent to jail and since he was in the military it would be mean time in Leavenworth for him.
At this point I gave in and did what my parents wanted, an abortion. With my parents it was never a question of what I wanted; it was a matter of appearances to them.
My boyfriend and I eventually did marry, but the abortion was a sore point in our marriage and I was "made to pay" for killing our child. My husband had affairs that he flaunted at me and told me that he could never have any children with me because of what I did.
Eventually, my marriage dissolved and I again found myself feeling worthless. Over time I found myself suffering depression at certain times of the year, avoiding any and all mention of abortion (this included newspaper or magazine articles, or television media).
I knew that God had forgiven me, but I could not forgive myself. Several years ago I finally received healing. It started with an article, which had I known at the time was about abortion; I would never have read, in my church's weekly denominational magazine. It was the hardest step I ever had to take. The wife of one our pastors worked with the Crisis Pregnancy Center and knew of a group called H.E.A.R.T. an abortion recovery group.
At seventeen I couldn't see a way around the threats of my parents; however, as an adult I realized there were other ways to inform the father of my pregnancy so that he could fight for me and our child. If I had the opportunity to live this part of my life over I would have made the phone call from a friend's house or mailed a letter from a friend's house.
I know my boyfriend would have fought for me. I learned it’s important to know what you are praying for because sometimes when you get it, things do not always turn out the way you had planned. I have also learned that God never left my side during this entire crisis.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Forgive from your HEART - How hard is that?

This morning, I read in the book of Matthew all about the "unforgiving debtor". He was a slave who was forgiven much by his master, but unwilling himself, to forgive someone who owed him a debt. The slave was pretty harsh to the person and sent him to prison until he could pay him back.

Well, he got told on and when the master found out what the forgiven slave had done to another person it made him upset and he basically said, "Fine, if you're not willing to forgive although I forgave you this huge debt, then off to prison you go." Not only did he get sent to prison, but he was to be tortured until he paid the debt.

Hmm, I thought that was all pretty nasty business, but the story doesn't end there, Jesus finished the story by saying, "This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart."

Okay, let's get that matter taken care of real quick, I thought. So I went down my list of anyone I may not have forgiven and then wiped my brow with a "whew". Put my Bible away and got ready to drop Sarrah off at school and go for a walk with my sister.

On today's walk I had a mission. I felt like I was supposed to go and see my old boss at his new place of business. He had been on my heart for many different reasons. So, off we went.

Upon arrival I noticed the name of his business partner painted on the window by the door of the office. I emotionally stopped in my tracks. Memories of betrayal and lies stormed through my mind. I did not have any desire to see or talk to that particular person. As a matter of fact now that I was saw his name I was remembering the whole situation as though I was walking through it again. I also recalled the part my old boss played in the whole thing.

As we stood in the office, his partner came out from the back and it seemed he recognized me right away, and was quick to sit down at the computer with no acknowledgement. I breathed a sigh of relief. Next, my old boss came out to greet us and we had a great conversation, although the memory of that painful event was in the forefront of my mind.

When my sister and I FINALLY left, I told her about what I had read earlier that morning in the Bible and the debt I felt the two of them owed me. I knew I had to free them from this debt and honestly didn't know how I could completely let it go.

There on the sidewalk in front of me sat a (you probably can guess if you have read prior blog notes) a shiny copper penny. I picked it up and knew I needed to trust the Lord, obey His word and forgive them of their debt to me. I would need to trust God with the outcome.

Forgiveness doesn't make the pain immediately go away. Forgiveness doesn't say, hey dude come and hurt me all you want over and over again. Forgiveness doesn't mean a person has to be our confidante or best friend. We are to be wise in our relationships.

Forgiveness, is simply saying in your heart, I do not hold anything against this person. The person is free from any debt I feel they owe me. And believe me, this is a big debt.

But, if I stood before God and had to pay my debt for every wrong I've done down here. I would be unable to pay that price. I could never on my own be holy enough to stand before my heavenly Father.

Because He loves me and all His creation, He had Jesus pay my debt. I am debt free for eternity because I believe in this gift He has given to me and it's available for the entire world.

So, knowing how lovingly God wiped my slate clean. I am today, in the process of wiping the slate clean for those two people and anyone else involved in the whole fiasco.

And I will stand in thankfulness, knowing my Jesus did that for me on the cross at Calvary.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Weary Mountain Climber

Have you ever felt like asking, "What next?", but were afraid to find out what could be next?

Ever watch your dream play out in another persons life? Or wondered why it seems so easy for some and your scrambling through the day, frazzled and exhausted? Have you ever just been plain weary?

Those times are tough.

Ever been so tired in your heart that it's hard to decipher a bump from a mountain. Especially when we're in the middle of climbing a mountain. They come in many forms, relationships, illness, finances, jobs. And in the midst of the climb, a bump can make it seem so hard, leaving a person left without an ounce of emotional energy or strength to deal with just the next step in life.

I've discovered in moments like this, Jesus says for the weary to come to Him, and He will give you rest. When bumps in the road seem to be mountains because of the weariness you are experiencing, take the time to sit in His presence. Sometimes, there is an immediate release. Sometimes He gives us what is needed for the next phase of the road.

No matter what He does for you, I can guarantee you it will be exactly what you need.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Happy New Year

First entry of the New Year 2010. I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
May this year be filled with joy, love, peace, and a bunch of wonderful things for you. My biggest prayer is for everyone to know how much God loves them and that everything you do is important to Him.