In the moments we allow ourselves to be transparent, God’s goodness and grace are exposed. When we share our story, including the mistakes, premature starts, and successful steps, His unconditional love toward us is revealed and offered to all.
Here is a glimpse of my story, a story of rescue and answered prayer…
Approximately 6 months ago a team from LIFE International joined us to lead a Church Leader Training on the Sanctity of Life. In preparation for this training I met with Michelle, LIFE’s Ministry Liaison, who asked what our goal was in regards to the training. I must admit to being taken aback as I “sat on my heels” and pondered the question.
My answer focused on equipping our leaders and then prayerfully consider how we would use the information to move forward. I also shared being open to God’s leading with Ignite, but never expected it to impact me on a personal level.
Beginning with the prayer initiative and continuing through the start of the week, I knew God was stirring something. The “what” was not apparent until their team leader Brad, and his wife Lynn, began to share their story. A story of adoption and that of adopting.
You see, when I was a senior in high school I found myself a confused, trying-to-numb-the-pain, pregnant teen. Through this pregnancy God taught me that all the trials and challenges that come can be used to build me, or break me. It was my choice.
In allowing Him to minister to my hurting heart, I found this pregnancy to be a trajectory toward a changed life. Taking the focus off myself and self destructive ways, I nourished the life within and watched her grow. After birth I chose to release my tiny daughter to a family who could keep her safe and provide all that I could not. Though not an easy decision, I knew it to be right.
Since that day, I have spoken about the adoption option to pregnant teens, and shared my testimony whenever God prompted. However, a shift occurred after hearing from Brad and Lynn. I went from being a young girl who made a mistake and released her baby, to being a birth mom.
A woman who chose life and gifted it to another to love and raise.
While it might not sounds like much to you, it was an earthquake moment for me.
A continental shift in perception.
An embrace from a loving God.
Don’t get me wrong, I never felt guilt about releasing, I knew it was the right thing to do- for her.
But now, my “mistake” transformed into what it always was, a “gift”.
Fast forward …
In sharing my story, Brad encouraged me to search for my now, 32 year old daughter stating, “every child wants to know their mom is looking for them, even if they choose not to respond.”
After this meeting I began the search and today, I know her by name (Elisabeth-Liz), have seen her photo and exchanged numerous letters and emails. I also am delighted to report that I have a grandson who will turn 2 in August. Though our relationship is new, I rejoice in seeing God’s goodness and protection through the years toward Liz. I realize once again that He has proven faithful in answering a multitude of silent prayers from a then, desperate girl.
Who would have guessed that by inviting a team from LIFE International to serve our leaders, God would minister and gift me in such a personal way. Jehovah IS sneaky as He cares about the small personal details we try to ignore. God doesn’t live in a box nor does He do things in a traditional way.
He uses all things, when we let Him- for our good!