Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A little note about a BIG subject... abortion

I have been too busy to blog lately. I am on a raw foods diet and doing good!
I am trusting the Lord but doing everything I know to do to 'prepare the field for rain'.
In other words, I am ready for a miracle.
I am having a ball studying for the Bible Study on my back porch. I am teaching on Colossians 1 tomorrow. I found it very comforting/interesting that Paul greets that Church by praying for them to be
"Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power [that you might begin to experience more of the power of God's spirit working in your life], unto all patience and long-suffering with joyfulness (Col 1:11)".
As I have learned in my life, patience + longsuffering does not = joyfulness apart from the power of God's Spirit working in your life. But, when we are strengthened by His glorious power during longsuffering, THERE IS JOY.
Wow.
This beautiful truth turns the health and wealth doctrine upside down (as does the rest of the Bible) that teaches a Christian should always be healthy and wealthy and if they aren't it is due to a lack of faith. Obviously that was not the case then or this prayer would have been unnecessary...
and it is NOT the case now.
If you are suffering in a trial that seems to never end, continue to pray for a miracle but also ask God to give you patience in longsuffering and JOY until He gives you your miracle.
It is only possible through the mighty power of the Holy Spirit which will happen through prayer
and studying the Bible. He is changing you. He is revealing Himself to you.
I am just now (4 yrs into my trial) realizing that when you are suffering, God hasn't forgotten you. He is most likely showing favor on you.
You will grow so much in your love for the Lord as He proves Himself faithful to you and gives you treasures in darkness. Others will look on in amazement and envy because God REALLY DOES DRAW NEAR TO THE BROKEN HEARTED.
"The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those who are crushed in spirit."
Psalm 34:18
It is a painful place but one of great power. Don't take the nearness and intimacy of God for granted. You have a unique opportunity. When life is good and predictable, it just isn't the same. You will miss these days. Maybe not the suffering but the intimacy with God.
Draw near to Him. He is so close to you desiring to show you great and unsearchable things.
"Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know."
Jer. 33:3
Paul (the guy who wrote the book of Colossians) had just stated in the beginning of the chapter that he was speaking to a Church full of faith. This Church was 'holy and faithful' but Paul knew the trials would come and they would need patience and joy in longsuffering.
Our goal isn't comfort. Our goal as a believer is to be more like Jesus. Not that praying for God to protect, heal, provide is wrong... I do that every day. But comfort and protection should not the goal in a Christian's life. Our lives are like a 'mist' according to Scripture, we are here to glorify God, be made more into the image of His Son, and share the gospel with a world of hurting people.
God allows trials into our lives to shape us. He has His loving hand on the thermostat of the heat and knows how to place us in the refiners fire. His fire does not burn. It only purifies.
I loved what I read today on this cool blog.
"The narrow road is extremely narrow by design. Those who travel it must by necessity travel light. There is no room for hatred, malice, pride, greed, prejudice, injustice, or selfishness on the narrow road. It leads to the throne of the Almighty God Himself, and He is only interested in the travelers, not their baggage (I love that part).Life along the narrow road is not perfect, because perfect people don't travel there. It is possible to break down on the narrow road too, to be hurt or to be abused. Sickness and pain are not uncommon - and neither is sin. But the difference in the two roads (the narrow vs. the broad) is this: You are never alone on the narrow road. Never. God is not on the broad road, but He is your constant companion, through the Holy Spirit, on the narrow one."
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I wish you could all come to the Bible Study as we sit at the feet of God and learn from the love letter He wrote to us.
I have to share this one other truth with you because it rocked my little world...
"He existed before everything else began, and he holds all creation together."
Col 1:17
Ok, this is really cool. Check this out.
Did you know that in the nucleus of an atom, there are opposite charges?
In other words, there is something holding our bodies together all the way down to our atoms. Without this, we would all explode. Scientists don't know what it is. They have called it
"atomic glue". We know what it is because it tells us in this verse!
J. E. S. U. S.
If He released His hold for one second, the whole universe would explode. If the charges of creation followed their natural bent, everything would blow up.
HE IS HOLDING ALL THINGS TOGETHER.
You think your problem is too big for the Lord to handle now?
I used to mainly remember this verse when I was driving over big bridges appreciating the fact that (hopefully) Jesus would hold it together while I drove across.
Now, I see it is WAY BIGGER than that.
He is holding every one of the atoms together in my whole body or I would just naturally explode!?!?! crazy. crazy. crazy. Our God is BIG. Too big to wrap our minds around.
I wish you could all come as we dig into the VERY exciting Word of God.
I know I just kind of rambled (I hope some part of that made sense to somebody) but I only had a few seconds and feel like my heart is overflowing with things. I just had to share a couple.
I also decided to copy this following note onto the blog.
I wrote this this morning in response to an old high school friend who found me through facebook and read something I wrote about abortion.
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Hi there Steph! I know we haven't seen anything of each other since high school; but your posting about abortion was interesting to me. I have no religious interests, and really haven't given the subject of abortion much thought. I always assumed I would have the right to decide what happened to my body at any point in time. What is your take on the issue in case of rape? And, do you guys think that all pregnancies no matter what, no matter when should be carried to term? You can message me back if you like - I thought I would post on your wall as I am sure some of your religious friends have some insights as well.
Thanks mate!
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Trista-
Thanks for asking me this question. Because I am very out spoken about my stand on protecting the life of the unborn, this is not the first time I have gotten the question about rape. I get asked the rape question a lot even though, according to the latest abortion statistics, rape accounts for less than 1% of abortion cases. I am sorry for anyone placed in this position. I cannot imagine. I know I would not abort my baby if I was raped. I can say that with complete confidence but since the chances of me or anyone I know ever being in those shoes is 1 in a million, I decided to copy and paste some quotes from women who were raped and had to make this terribly painful decision.
Trista, when I gave my life to Christ in college after realizing He died in my place on the cross and took on my punishment so that I would never have to, I chose to follow Him for the rest of my life. Following Him means taking a stand on the issues He took a stand on and fighting for all that He wrote in His Word. I don't know if I would consider myself religious but I am definitely in a love relationship with Jesus Christ and I desire to love what He loves.
Here are some quotes from women who may give you a little insight into what abortion after rape does to the mother and her body....
"A majority of Americans take a pro-life position opposing most or all abortions, but polls show one-third to one-half of pro-life people believe abortion should be okay in cases of rape and incest.
A new book from a rape survivor shows the added horror abortion is that only compounds sexual abuse trauma. In a gripping personal account of pain and redemption, author Nicole W. Cooley offers a candid look at her rape as a young military officer by a trusted friend. She relates the devastating emotional consequences of her decision to abort the child conceived during the attack. "I felt that the abortion was like being raped again," says Cooley. "Only this time, it was much worse because I had consented to the assault."
Cooley is the author of "Into the Light: Rape, Abortion and the Truth that Set Me Free" (Pleasant Word, 2007), which provides an intimate look at the trauma associated with abortion - even in the case of rape."
At the time of my abortion I believed that I didn't have another choice. It's devastating to believe you have to choose between your life and the life of your child - and then live with the aftermath of that decision," she explains in a statement to LifeNews.com.
"Into the Light" is striking a chord with women who are victims of abuse and assault and one woman who has also experienced the pain of an abortion says women can relate to it."Every person who reads this book can connect with some part of Nicole's story and learn as she did about God's healing grace," says Georgette Forney of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign.
"I strongly recommend this book; it teaches us to have more compassion for one another and encourages us to face our traumas." "The bottom line is that abortion hurts women," says Cooley. "I hope to give readers hope in the knowledge that just as God healed me, there is hope for them as well."
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Jackie B. had an abortion after a rape. She later said:
"I soon discovered that the aftermath of the abortion continued a long time after the memory of my rape had faded. I felt empty and horrible. Nobody told me about the emptiness and pain I would feel deep within, causing nightmares and deep depressions. They had all told me that after the abortion I would continue on with my life as if nothing had happened. ... I found that though I could forgive the man who raped me, I couldn't forgive myself for having the abortion.
"Debbie "N." wrote:
"I still feel that I probably couldn't have loved that child conceived of rape, but there are so many people who would have loved that baby dearly. The man who raped me took a few moments of my life, but I took that innocent baby's entire life."Debbie's comment starkly shows the actual effect on the women who is aborted to "cure" rape: It shifts the focus from the violence the rapist committed against her, to the violence she committed against the baby."
Patte White (my personal friend) wrote:
As a nurse in Labor and Delivery for 7 years, I saw the horrible pain of abortion. I worked in a private hospital that didn't preform abortions, but I saw women after women who suffered all kinds of medical problems because of past abortions. I saw women welcome their first live delivery with broken hearts over the babies they hadn't chosen to let live. I saw women in now stable married relationship so desiring children and miscarrying repeatedly because of their wounded uterus from an abortion Dr. who didn't really care about their future children. It really didn't matter if the had a relationship with God or not they felt the pain of loss the same. It isn't a religious decision.
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I hope this helps you understand where I am coming from and why in the world I think a rape victim should choose life. I hope you see that, even by putting Scripture aside, it is only HURTING a woman's body, mind and soul by choosing abortion. Many women never recover from the physical trauma and psychological trauma an abortion causes.
After saying all that, I want everyone who reads this to know that there is forgiveness and healing found in Christ for anyone who has chosen abortion. There is love found at the Cross of Christ, not condemnation.
"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus"
Romans 8:1
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"
2 Cor 5:17
"as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us."
Psalm 103:12
"Once again you will have compassion on us. You will trample our sins under your feet and throw them into the depths of the ocean!"
Micah 7:19


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Your other question was about what I think about carrying all pregnancies to term. I will always choose life and let God be in control of how it all plays out since He is all-knowing and I am not.Our family is currently dealing with this issue...My sister-in-law is currently 22 + weeks pregnant with a baby who has a fatal condition called anencephaly. It is when the baby forms with no skull or brain. It is beyond tragic. They are choosing life for their baby even though it flies in the face of the medical community's advice and what 95% of women carrying a baby with this condition choose.Pray for them if you think of it...
So, these are some reasons why I have chosen to stand firm on 'life'. I have had many ethically challenging questions thrown my way but I have decided to always choose life- no matter the situation. There is never regret there and God's blessing and honor is there.Thank you so much for writing me. I don't think I have everything figured out but I do know one thing for sure.....I am forever thankful for all that Jesus Christ has done for me.
One very forgiven girl-
Stephanie
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Click HERE to read another post I wrote on Abortion.
Please don't write me hateful anonymous comments.
I would love to talk to you more about this so if you want to write me, email me.

7 comments:

Double L said...

This is a very BRAVE post, Stephanie. Why do I get the feeling that there will, unfortunately, be some hateful, anonymous comments? I hope not.
Anyway, I had this very discussion with my pro life sister. Although I considered myself pro life at the time, I was on the fence in some areas and I could not believe, at the time, that she was pro life, even in the case of rape and resulting pregnancy.
She made the same point made here--that the abortion was a further assault on the woman, not to mention STILL ending a life, no matter how that life began. I had never thought of it from that perspective before. Hearing these comments from women who experienced rape and then made the choice to abort really hits that home.

Anonymous said...

Couldn't agree with you more ~ amen! Thank you for your eloquent explanation.

Suzanne said...

Steph,
You put that better than I ever could. I wish I would have had a strong foundation in college to share that with a wayward friend. She chose abortion, she then fell into this cylcle of looking for love and then getting pregnant and choosing abortion. Her life was ruined after the first one. I don't know if she ever found her way back, but when she confided in me she was so broken. She left college and continued to look for something to fill that black whole in her spirit. I hope she found redemption.

Suzanne

Anonymous said...

Steph, I can't imagine anyone leaving you hateful comments. Your words come from such a pure place, and I know the goodness of your heart and Tim's heart as you reached out to me in my pain last year.

Jennifer

kelly said...

I have been praying and searching my heart and the word for a few days, going through different scenarios in my head, trying to come up with a logical thought on abortion. Well, it all comes back to what God's word says. Black and white.....it is sin to kill a baby. The Bible does not say to obey me, but "only if this or that doesn't happen"...it simply, and clearly says obey Him, trust Him, rely on Him. I can only imagine the pain and suffering one goes through, but I do know He is faithful, He will provide a way to turn the bad into good. With that said, God's love covers over a multitude of sin, and His love and grace will cover over anyone who comes to Him with a broken heart and heal their wounds. I thank Him for saving me, forgiving the everyday yuck that is in my heart.
He died for all sin, it is the world that puts a label on big sins or small sins. He died for them ALL!! Your posts are always written in love and grace. It is because of one's own conviction from the one true judge, in their heart, if someone spews out meanness to you. So thankful for you, so thankful you are feeling good!!
Love you,
Kelly

Erin said...

I feel that I am going through a stage in my walk where God is showing me how BIG He is. This post really helped me further along that way-I love how you explained that He is holding every atom in our being together. I think I struggle to compartmentalize God. I want to blow open all the barriers and make room for Him to come rushing into every corner, every relationship, every atom! Thank you for this Steph. Love you girl!

ocean mommy said...

Beautiful, Strong and Powerful post Stephanie.

Praying for you sister-in-law.

Blessings,
Stephanie :)