Unstoppable Love - God's pursuit of redeeming a sinner.

In sharing my story, my hope is that readers will clearly see the incredible power and unstoppable love of God working in a sinner’s life over many years. And that Hope will be restored in hearts and minds who are struggling with sin.

Last week my 15 year old son started high school and it’s exciting to see him growing into a man with a dream to one day serve in the Navy. In order to fulfill his dream, we’ve talked about how the choices he makes now and in the coming years can prepare him in accomplishing his goals. But if wrong choices are made it can cause great harm.
Discussing all this with him, reminded me of being 15 and having a dream to be a social worker for special needs children. I started off making good choices at 15 but 3 years later my choices began taking me on a path that I never thought I would be on and spiraled out of control.

I was 19 and studying at The University of Akron when I became pregnant. Fear gripped my heart. Afraid of telling my parents and afraid I wouldn’t be able to finish college I chose to have an abortion. The only thing I had heard regarding abortion was a conversation once when my parents told someone to have an abortion before it was too late. Also I knew it was legal. So, naturally, I thought I was doing the right thing.

While at the clinic I thought my problem would be solved in just a matter of an hour or two. No one ever told me that I would carry such a heavy burden for more than ten years after. During the abortion the doctor explained to me that it was a simple procedure that involved just removing some tissue and he would be done in just a few minutes. At the sound of the suction, tears filled my eyes and I could not speak. I was left with an unexplainable emptiness inside of me. Why did I feel this way?? Then a few days later I returned to school and work feeling some relief that I could continue life as I had been. Except, LIFE WAS NEVER GOING TO BE THE SAME AGAIN.

Every time the memory of the abortion surfaced, I suppressed it again and again and again. Years later I learned that this is the “denial stage” that post abortive women go through. Suppressing the memory for more than a decade many negative impacts. Unable to stay focused, college became a struggle – I scraped by finishing my education with an associate degree in business. I had lost my dream of being a social worker.

By age 24 I was married and thinking life was on the right track. Except I was not happy, in fact, I was depressed much of the time and had a lot of unexplainable anger, another one of those stages post abortive women go through. I couldn’t understand why I miserable and discontent all the time??

My husband and I started going to church. Because I believed in God’s existence I thought I was a Christian. And that was enough for me to start serving in the youth group. At this same time, our son was born which brought on the familiar fear that gripped my heart so many years before. Anxiety about raising him and fear that something would happen to him caused me to became extremely overprotective.

During a youth group meeting a young girl mentioned to me that she couldn’t understand how a mother could have an abortion killing her child. I was stunned and speechless. Did she just say that abortion was the death of a child at the hands of his/her mother? Now I was at a whole new level of fear. What IF she was right?

That night I laid still in bed, my thoughts racing and my heart facing the possibility that I had ended my child’s life. I began to cry out to God. Guilt and fear consumed my heart. No one, except for my husband knew about my past. Except...
God. He knew. For several months I began to really seek the Truth of who God really is and who I really am. I heard the Gospel for the first time – I discovered many things. I hadn’t known what sin was or who Jesus was. I was not a Christian.
Then one day I literally fell to my knees overcome by conviction and my great need for forgiveness and mercy. I asked Jesus to save me. I had to get to the church and talk to the pastor. I dared not tell the Pastor all the details but just said I wanted to be baptized. I remained silent about my abortion for five more years. I couldn't possibly tell anyone in church about this. They were all so perfect and here I am the Great Sinner!
Every day I would ask God for help to raise my son and tell Him that I would do whatever He asked me to do. Many afternoons I’d go to the church sanctuary with my baby and my bible, talking to God and reading scripture.
One day the Lord clearly guided me to Luke 1 and Psalm 51. I was to be obedient like Mary – doing God’s will and as God instructed David to :
“teach transgressors His ways,
so that sinners would turn back to God and tell others how He delivered me from the guilt of bloodshed and that my tongue would sing of His righteousness and declare His Praises.”
Praising Him would be easy, but telling others my story – the bloodshed part - I wasn’t sure how that would happen. It was too painful and I still felt so much shame.


Five years later while driving my son daily to school, I passed this place called:
THE PREGNANCY CARE CENTER OF WAYNE COUNTY, OHIO
Every school day I drove by and had this prompting in my heart drawing me near this place.
I would pray: "Am I to go there, Lord?"... The Spirit within me confirmed this. Of course, I doubted and kept asking. I finally realized I couldn’t drive past it any longer. Steering into the parking lot I asked again – “God, am I really suppose to be here?” My heart started beating harder. I knew. I knew I was to be there.
The receptionist smiled with a kind and amusing look on her face when she replied to my inquiry. “That's interesting, we just finished praying a few minutes ago asking God to bring another volunteer for our training.”
In that moment I saw a glimpse of what God had revealed to me during my times alone with Him in the church sanctuary. But what I didn’t realize at that moment was the irony of it all…
…God was also about to show me who really needed help. It was me!
Before volunteering I completed the FORGIVEN AND SET FREE bible study. While addressing the anger and shame of my sin I also discovered in the scriptures the depth of God’s mercy and compassion towards me. I began to understand that by faith in His sacrifice this was all I needed. He not only saw my sin, He saw my pain and tenderly revealed His Love which healed my brokenness. I was finally SET FREE! I discovered a New Life with joy instead of shame. Peace instead of fear. Hope instead of despair. He gave me a purpose for my life that only comes from a relationship with Him. And out of this relationship with Him I would be able to help others in crisis pregnancies and lead post-abortive women to that healing and redeeming love of Jesus.
My dream of being a social worker has come true. Not the kind that has a degree, but rather one with the Spirit of Love fulfilling a greater plan.
It continues to astonish me how God has taken my sin and the ashes from the destruction of life and turned it into a beautiful thing that is helping others - not just women but children too - children with a very special need...the need for LIFE. Presently I serve at two pregnancy centers working as a peer counselor and speaking publicly. I am a Regional Coordinator for the SILENT NO MORE AWARENESS CAMPAIGN and owner of ESTHER’S COOKIES – “Eat a cookie~Save a life!”TM. The sale of cookies benefits pregnancy centers and orphanages. My desire is to see lives saved by sharing the Gospel’s compassion and healing power to those hurting while helping to save the lives of children.

Soon another dream of mine will come true. I will be reunited with my child.
JESUS, OUR SAVIOR, REDEEMER AND RESTORER will accomplish this when He returns!
And because of Him, I will sing forever of His Righteousness and give Him Praise.
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