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)