UPDATE: IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS GIVEAWAY BY JOINING PAT’S FACEBOOK GROUP (ONE OF SEVERAL WAYS TO ENTER), BUT HAVE HAD TROUBLE ACCESSING IT, PLEASE VISIT THE GROUP HERE! THEN BE SURE TO LEAVE A COMMENT ON PAT’S POST AND THIS ONE TO BE ENTERED FOR THE DVD KITS AND THE GRAND PRIZE.
This is going to be a longish post, but hang with me till the end – there’s a giveaway involved that the women in your church, small group or crisis pregnancy center (or maybe even you!) can’t afford to have you miss!
You know, sometimes God just baffles me. Surely, His goodness and mercy are beyond my comprehension and it’s that way by design; my lack of understanding where He’s concerned only serves to increase my faith. But when He pulls me into a plan that He obviously has put into place – especially one in which I have no personal experience – I sometimes find myself completely at a loss to the “whys” of His ways.
Case in point: The fight against abortion.
If you spend any time over here, you know that we talk about this topic a lot. However, I don’t think I’ve ever explained how I came to this place and why it’s become so important to me.
Last August, I had tickets to go San Antonio for Living Proof Live and the Siesta Fiesta. Those plans had been in place for months, when I had lunch with a woman who attended my church, but whom I’d only really “met” through blogging. Her name was Pat Layton, and she was (and is) the founder of A Woman’s Place, one of the largest crisis pregnancy centers in the country. It was one of those precious meetings where you know in your heart that something special has just happened, where God has something in mind and an instantaneous friendship is born. She told me that day that she was going to be speaking at the Lifeway Fully Loaded ministry conference just prior to Living Proof, and asked if there was any way I might be able to go in early with her team. I told her I would pray about it and get back with her soon. I was so surprised that she would ask me to something like this at our first meeting, but knew in my heart that I needed to take it seriously.
I prayed as I drove home, asking the Lord what He would have me do. I needed to make a decision quickly, as the conference was only a week away. Finally, I said, “Lord, if you want me to go, please show me with a low fee for a flight change and the availability of a hotel room (they had been booked for months with this big conference in town).” I got on the phone when I got home and the lady at the airlines looked up my reservation. I told her what I wanted to do. This was our conversation:
Her: “I’ll be happy to change you to an earlier flight, but there will be a change fee involved.”
Me: “Yes, I understand that. What would the fee be at this late date?”
Her: “Let me see…um…it’s ONE DOLLAR.”
Me: “Excuse me? You mean one hundred dollars?”
Her: “Um…no…the computer is telling me ONE DOLLAR.”
Me: “Isn’t that a little unusual?”
Her: “Yes, it’s VERY unusual! However, that’s what it says. Do you want to put it on the same card you bought your ticket with?”
Me: “(giggle, giggle) Yes, I’ll happily pay the dollar with the same card!”
ONE DOLLAR! Unbelievable, and yet, SO GOD! I don’t even have to elaborate on the hotel room that was immediately available for a LOWER RATE than the other nights I’d booked! I was going into San Antonio early with Pat and there was no mistaking that I was supposed to be there.
I went assuming that God had something to say to me about Women’s Ministry, and He did – just not in the way I was expecting. I sat in on Pat’s talks, “Ministering to Women in Crisis” and “The Battlefield of Abortion.” I learned a LOT about the life-altering consequences of abortion and the broken women that lay in its wake. I learned of the shocking and horrific statistic that 1 in 3 women of childbearing age has had at least one abortion…1 in 3!! What did that mean for my own small group of 12? What about the women in church leadership and the pastors wives? Of the six women in line at the grocery store; how many of them were walking wounded? With no past abortion experience of my own, all I brought to the table were the stories of a few friends who had honored me with their trust. I felt the Lord’s stirrings in my heart to get involved, but was quick to argue…”Who am I to help these women when I haven’t walked the road of their suffering?”
Even though you’ve never had an abortion, the women whohave need to know that they don’t just have strength in their own numbers. They need to know that there are non-abortive women out there that still love them, don’t judge them, and hold their broken hearts in high esteem. They need to know that you’re ready to walk alongside them to their healing and rejoice with them as they’re set free from the bondage of the past.
So, I’m part of the fight now. I have the privilege of hosting the blogger pro-life prayer team, Changing One Heart for Many (join us, won’t you?), and I’ve traveled with Pat and watched God do His amazing work first-hand. On top of these, it was through a “giveaway that keeps on giving,” of Pat Layton’s post-abortion healing study called Surrendering the Secret, that the Lord allowed me to locked arms and hearts with people all over the country, many of whom shared their personal stories and the healing they’ve received from God through this study.
In addition to Pat’s personal blog, she also has a Surrendering the Secret blog where she has issued the challenge for us to “fight like girls”. She’s asking you to join the fight that so many of us have joined, as there is strength in numbers.
She’s offering a full SURRENDERING THE SECRET DVD kit ($150 value) to use for your own group, or DONATE TO YOUR CHURCH, CPC OR LOCAL COUNSELING CENTER! I’m going to spice things up a bit and add ANOTHER DVD kit into the mix, as well! Upon entering, you’ll also be registered for the chance to win an all-expenses paid registration to an upcoming STS leadership training! There are several ways to enter:
- Go here to join the Surrendering the Secret Facebook Group, then leave a comment on this STS post that you joined.
- Write your own post about why you think it’s important to “be in the fight” and link back to the STS giveaway post, leaving a comment with your post link.
- Finally, leave a comment HERE that you’ve done one or the other! If you entered ONE way, your name will go in the drawing ONE time; if you entered BOTH ways, you name will be entered TWICE.
Girls, it’s time to get in the fight. Your entry for this giveaway may be the very thing that puts you “in the ring” and helps you bring hope and healing to those around you. God wants to use EVERYONE OF US to stand for life and to walk alongside those who are broken and need healing and acceptance. Even if you’ve never walked this road, God is ready to USE you if you’ll just except the challenge and fight like a girl!
You made me cry, as usual. You are an amazing friend.
I think I OWE YOU A DOLLAR!!!!! Our friendship has become so priceless in such a short time.
Sisters like you who have such a tender heart for this issue bless my socks off!
Let’s give some ministry away!!
p.s. Now remind me, why are you in Texas?
Hopefully, I’ve altered my text to be more clear. There are A LOT of ways to enter, both through blogging and Facebook, but you don’t have to be a member of Facebook to participate. Jump on over to the STS blog (link in the post) to see how you can enter, then come back and let me know that you have – you’ll be entered in my little giveaway too!
You are so sweet to get involved even though you’ve never experienced it. You are right that it tells the world that you are there for them no matter what their history looks like. I would have felt the same as you before I read this post– What could I do since I haven’t gone through it?! Thank you for your obedience to His calling! You are such an amazing woman! If I won it I know exactly who I would give it to. A good friend of mine (who I had lunch with JUST this afternoon) is starting to counsel women in the same situation… coincidence? I don’t think so! I’d share it with her!
Have a great weekend. I’m going to hop over to the other blog now! 🙂
Hey Melinda, wanted to let you know that I did go over to STS but couldn’t figure out how to find the facebook group that was mentioned — the one you had to join to be entered in the drawing.
Also for some reason, a couple of different times I’ve run into problems opening your site — notes pop up saying can’t open, etc. Anyway… just wanted you to know that I tried but am running into technical problems. But since I’m technologically challenged, that might not be too big a surprise 🙂
I’ve been so lax about posting every Monday but I am praying right along with you.
I’m headed over to Pat’s blog to enter.
btw, I was so excited that Pat left a comment on my blog the other day. 😉
How I love you my sweet friend. Thank you for walking this journey with ME and being non-judgmental. You loved me through my darkest confession and then walked with me on my healing journey. I am forever grateful. I am finally set free and I am in this fight with you!
Love you so-