"The thistle is a prickly flower, aye, but how it is sweetly worn."

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Fall 2013

This year has been super full for Jude.  He started his Preschool 3 class at a church in our community.  He started playing soccer, his first organized sports experience.  He turned 4 years old.  And finally, we went to our favorite local pumpkin patch.  Here are some pictures from these special events.

Click here to create your own Shutterfly photo book.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Jude- four months

Jude's 4 month photo book I made... I'd like to thank OshKosh for this one and the $20 certificate they gave me for shutterfly- which expires on the 31st.  Nothing like $20 off and a deadline to make me get this done :)

Saturday, October 12, 2013

on how All {really} is Grace

So much on my heart- and where on earth do I begin.  For starters, I recently wrote this post which has been read over 600x.  My blog is very much a small blog read by some of my friends and family.  I might get 100 people to read a post after a few weeks.  Yet, both times I have publicly come out about my personal experience with abortion, the stories get read and read and shared and shared.  My original post has been shared on about 5 different blogs- some personal life blogs and some Christian/theology blogs.  It's pretty mind blowing to think about how the internet can allow a story to spread.  It's even more mind blowing to think that the one thing I would never admit- less than a year ago mind you- is the thing I'm realizing God can most use from me.

Someone left this comment on my ig regarding the post "Sin stays hidden, but God brings redemption for that which is brought to light".

For the past year and some months, I have been trying to live out '1000 gifts' and counting all the ways Grace covers everything around me.  Maybe it was the unfolding of recognizing Grace that made me feel brave enough to say yes I had an abortion in the first place.  I don't know.  I know Grace has changed everything.  Grace is so much deeper than I originally thought.  We all know that it's God's Grace that saves us.  And yet, His Grace goes so much farther than just that one act.  It is constantly taking my shame and transforming it, redeeming it from something hideous to something beautiful.  I would never have imagined that that could be true of abortion, but it is.

Sin led me into premarital sex, an abortion, a bad marriage driven by guilt, emotional, verbal, and physical abuse, emotional trauma, anxiety, and eventually divorce, single parenthood, fear....

Grace took all of those things and produced Jude, my atonement child.  Taught me about love.  Gave me the courage to leave my marriage.  Helped me heal and see that abuse wasn't what I deserved.  Grace gave me the most Christlike servant- boyfriend.  Grace constantly speaks through Jimmy as I learn what it's like to be forgiven, to be served, to be loved, to be held accountable with kindness, to be encouraged.  Sometimes it just truly blows my mind to look at my life from 2007 and my life now in 2013.  There is so little the same about the person I was then and now- much less what my life was made up of then and now.  I'm beyond blessed.

And for what?  I certainly don't deserve it.  I've done it all wrong the first time around.  But oh the deep deep love of Jesus.  He takes all I've done and turns it around to bless me.  And yet also for his glory.  Because it really isn't about me.  These 1000+ gifts aren't because of me at all.  They are about Him.  The ugly becomes the beautiful because His Story is best told through the brokenness and redemption of my story.

Why can my abortion story be read at least 3000 times during this past year?  Because God's Glory shines best through my cracks.  It's an amazing thing.  I'm (in some ways) thankful for all my bad decisions, for all my pain, for all my shame, for all the nights I just wanted to die really.  I'm thankful because I see how God had carried me through all of those darkest moments.  I'm thankful because there is no greater thrill than knowing that God can use me and my story somehow.  I'm thankful because I know God can use a story like mine for greater good in the pro life vs pro choice debate far better than He could had I never made that decision.  I'm not sure what the correct word here is.  I certainly regret my original decision.  Yet, I can see how God sovereignly allowed it so that I could bring His Story out in the open.  1000 gifts.  Maybe not the most beautifully wrapped gifts.  Certainly full of ugly.  But praise God- He transforms the ugly into beautiful every day.

"But Joseph said to then, 'Don't be afraid.  Am I in the place of God?  You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives." 
~ Genesis 50:19-20 
(my most favorite voice about God's sovereignty)

Thursday, October 3, 2013

The ugly side of my abortion- for Wendy Davis.

**Disclaimer- before you read this, there is some background knowledge about me on the left regarding my grace-filled abortion story.  Click here to read**

There are a whole heckuva lot of things going through my mind right now.  I promise nothing in regards to quality of writing currently, because quite frankly, I'm shakingly upset.  That being said "riddle me this Texas- how does a meaningless Texas congresswoman go from abortion filibuster to governor possibiltiy".  Where exactly do you see credentials in that?  One speech does not qualify you to run a state.  That does not catapult you from middle school athletic team to NCAA division 1 team.  Sorry.  I don't really care what other 'social programs' she in theory supports.  I don't care that she supports more insurance for Texas children (I do too).  I don't care that she cares about Texas jobs (I do too).  One speech does not prove you know how to lead a state.  A state, which by the way, has managed to escape severe repercussions from the economy despite the fact that the National government is selling us to China one trillion dollars at a time.  We shouldn't elect people because they give good speeches.... Oh wait ::cough. Obama. cough::  End of rant.

In all seriousness, I just wanted to come at this from a personal perspective.  There are a whole, whole lot of people who vote and are strongly pro choice or pro life.  However, there are also a whole lot of people who vote who feel other issues are more pertinent that abortion.  I can understand that in a lot of instances.  I don't think that argument applies though when the only reason we know the person exists is because of their abortion stance.

Most people are not technically qualified to share a personal opinion on the validity of abortion.  Most of the people haven't had one.  But I have.  So I feel like I get the special right to share.  For me this isn't just a 'my faith says this' issue.  This is a 'from my personal experience' issue.

I had an abortion at Planned Parenthood Dallas.  Just a basic looking office building somewhere around Greenville-ish.  I had to show my ID at the door.  Did you know they don't let you into the clinics unless you can prove you have a right to be there?  That means that unless you are having an abortion personally or accompanying someone you have no idea what is going on behind that door.  If you are accompanying someone do you know how far you are allowed in?  Not past the waiting room!!!!!  Do you know what this means?  When you have your consultation in which you basically say you are willing to have this abortion you are ALONE.  You and the 'nurse'.  No one has any idea what's going on behind that door.  Do you know who goes in with you for the sonogram?  you are ALONE and no one has any idea what goes on behind that door.  Do you know who goes with your into the actual clinic where the abortion takes place?  YOURSELF.  No one has any idea what goes on behind that door.  Do you know who goes with you to the 'observation' area?  You go by yourself.  Fun fact- unless Wendy Davis has had an abortion she doesn't actually even know what's going on behind those doors.

Want to know what it's like?  You have a sonogram first.  But you aren't allowed to see anything.  Because if you saw anything you'd see it actually looks like a baby.  Then you have a consultation in which you say you are doing this of your own free will.  They also warn you of the common repercussion of abortion- which is incidentally depression.  Then you go to the tiny 'operating room' which is incidentally just a basic check up room.  You are propped up.  You legs are spread.  A device is used and literally the baby is drained into a bucket.  In my case a yellow mop bucket.  Wendy Davis is famous and running for governor for defending my right to do that.  There is nothing ok about draining 7 week old fetuses from a mom to a mop bucket.  A nasty mop bucket.  This is my story y'all.  Not the news.  This is my personal experience.

After that I went into the observation room where I sat with 5-7 other girls crying.  We were all crying. Because what we just chose to do was not ok.  And there's no way you can actually have the abortion and not realize that.  I actually don't remember much of that part.  Except that I threw up everywhere.  Probably because I was so disgusted with myself.

You know what I most clearly remember?  The nights I'd claw at my own skin because my entire body was wracked with guilt.  The nights I hated to go to sleep because I couldn't deal with the pain of knowing what I'd done.  I experienced depression all right.  Guilt induced depression.  I spent the next 2 years wrestling with the thought of grace and could God's grace cover what I'd done.  Maybe it was even more than 2 years.  I will never forget, though, the way I would scream into my pillow at night trying to muffle the sound of gut wrenching tears I cried.  I had two roommates at the time- and couldn't bear the thought of them knowing my shame.  I cried that way for months.  I mean this- the only thing that kept me from taking my own life was God's grace.  From the bottom of my soul, I could not take the pain.  And again, I don't go a week even now I don't think about how old that baby should be.  He/she would be starting kindergarten this year by the way.

That's what Wendy Davis really fought for.  And that is what catapulted her to run for governor.

Praise God that He took the pain and carried my shame... that He is the God of the sinner like me.