Young Nurse Does Everything Wrong, But is Still Redeemed by God’s Grace!

This was such an interesting and encouraging testimony.  A young woman who didn’t take morality seriously, moves in with her boyfriend in college, becomes a nurse and assists with abortions, has her own abortion (that ends up rendering her almost completely infertile), finally learns through many trials what reliance on God and redemption are!

Just an overall feel good story!

Best quote from this woman’s article?

“Two decisions forever changed the direction of my life~ 1.) breaking God’s protective commands regarding the sacredness of marriage (having sex before marriage) and 2.) disregarding the sanctity of life (participating in abortions and having an abortion).”

From here

Why didn’t I value myself or life when I was younger?

That is a question I will always ask myself. My low view of life harmed us more than we could ever have known at the time.

It took 19 years before we could have a child.

The reason?

We had not obeyed God’s commands before and after marriage, and we suffered consequences that would reach over many years. In some ways, those consequences still continue today, though forgiven.

Today I am the 60-plus-year-old mother of three active and involved young adults (now all three married as of Nov. 2017), but as my husband and I look back over what the Lord has done, we marvel at God’s grace and mercy. Our lives would have turned out so differently, and we can’t imagine life without these young people!

I will tell you the sad story.

The early 50s, when we grew up, saw increasing prosperity. After the horrors and hardships of WWII, families in the U.S. were focused on getting that new dishwasher, television, and maybe, even two cars. Women were leaving home for the job market in record numbers to have the desired extras.

…. Continue Reading at Deep Roots at Home

Pregnancy Update – Honesty About Motherhood, Abortion, & Conviction

29 weeks baby 2

30 weeks of pregnancy have flown by… I’ve finally started to experience the all-over body aches and pains of having a heavy & huge-feeling belly.  Whether I’m sitting or standing, riding in a car, or lying on a soft bed, everything seems to hurt (in an uncomfortable, dull-pain kind of way).  Every time I acknowledge the uncomfortableness, I try to thank God that these unpleasant symptoms waited this long to show up, and that it’s so close to being “over.”  Only 7 to 9 more weeks to go and we get to meet our new baby boy!

It’s amazing how different this pregnancy is from when I had my 4 year old!  We had been married for 3 years, but we were terrified at the prospect of actually being parents.  I had never been around babies (let alone infants), and had never even changed a diaper.  We were still in college (both of us!), and working part time jobs… how we’d be able to manage being good parents as well, was beyond us.  (Side note: We definitely read a few great books together in those months, we did what we always do as a couple, search out knowledge and wisdom of what works and what doesn’t).

My son was a surprise – one that I wrestled with in my own struggle to see myself as capable of being a competent mother.  I would look at our other married friends, most of whom were older, and compare myself to their having kids in their 30’s, I looked at my own mother, who didn’t have her first child (me) until she was 32 and had been married for 8 years – it was one of the only times I’ve actually felt envy (something I normally am not tempted by ever).  I envied their experience, maturity, and confidence in their parenting, and I viewed myself as “less than” because of my young age (23 throughout the pregnancy, and then 24 when he was an infant).

We were extremely short on resources and went to Planned Parenthood for a free official pregnancy test so that we could receive governmental aid (yes, we were that poor & that naïve/irresponsible in failing to plan effectively for a possible pregnancy).  The nurse was a woman probably in her 40’s, she looked nervous when she gave me the positive results – and asked me quickly if I wanted the baby.  If I didn’t the next step would be to plan for & schedule the abortion.  My own answer surprised myself, I had been tempted in the weeks before this appointment to consider abortion (but we went into this appointment knowing we would keep it).  When faced with this question directly, I was suddenly very sure I wanted this baby -studying biology in undergrad, I knew there was only “one chance” for this uniquely designed child – the same child would never come together in a masterpiece of DNA and personality ever again, in the whole universe.  The nurse let out an audible breath of relief perhaps, and looked happy for me – congratulating me on the confirmed pregnancy.

Did I want this baby?  Such a loaded question.  To be heartbreakingly honest with you, no I didn’t “want a baby”… it was most definitely not the right timing for us, and I didn’t feel like I had any business being someone’s mother that young when I still had so much to figure out about life for myself.  You might think that since I was married that it would somehow make a difference, but I know I’ve seen that married couples use abortion just the same when birth control fails and they aren’t “ready yet” or at the time of life or their careers that they had imagined themselves to be when ready for children.  It’s ignorant to assume that only un-wed teens use abortion to fix irresponsibility.  The sad and sobering fact is that many people use abortion even when married or in a stable financial relationship.

Unwanted… “a” baby was unwanted… but this baby, my baby, my first born & conceived child to be… yes!  I did want this baby.  It was in this transition of accepting this unborn child as a gift from God that gave me a renewed faith in the midst of my unethically-based, scientific studies I was immersed in during my undergrad.

This pregnancy is just so beautifully different.  I’m so different.  I know what kind of mother I am, my son is turning out amazing and wonderful, he knows he is “my treasure” and returns such a beautiful appreciative love back to me!  The family that we’ve created is just so beautiful.  My husband was always an amazing man, but he’s become more so with fatherhood – he is beyond comparison when it comes to leading us as a family – and setting a perfect example for my son to follow.  There’s a different atmosphere that we’ve created – the atmosphere of a beautiful family that is involved in not only our son’s life, but the lives of others that we reach out to in our community.  I’m no longer naïve and feel too young, I get to help and mentor teens that come to me with questions about sex and their high school relationships, and I understand how to actually help them.  I’ve experienced firsthand, God’s perfect ways, and He’s given me a confidence and compassionate heart to be able to mentor without judgment, but with assurance of what is right or wrong.  Teens are not looking for someone who will just passively listen to them, I’ve had girls ask me outright what the right thing to do is – they want solid answers from someone they can admire and trust – someone who’s life looks beautiful to them.  It’s sobering the kind of integrity of character I better have so that my life doesn’t hurt them in some way – we have IMMENSE responsibility as women who are nearing 30 and above – to live a righteous life for the ones who are watching us, that are younger and desperately needing examples to follow.  I am actively seeking out who God wants me to be, but I also appreciate who is the woman I’ve become throughout these years.  I’ve successfully managed our household, raised a child through their toddler and infancy stages, built a beautiful marriage most people would kill for, and have tried to learn from and admit my mistakes and personal failures in order to see God use them in a redemptive way.

I recently was misunderstood by a friend, and accused of being “set in my ways” because I have convictions in controversial topics, but the reality is that I’ve spent years now searching out truth and trying to discern what is right or wrong, we are called to “stand firm” in God’s truths – our children, our friends, spouses, family members, and people who look up to us need us to have strong convictions.  It doesn’t mean we have to be judgmental, in fact we are charged with needing to have mercy and tender gentleness, but mercy and tender gentleness does not equate with “weakness” of convictions or a lukewarm kind of wishy-washy faith that is ultimately useless as it gives no one direction when they view our lives looking for solid answers.

God calls us to be merciful, kind, loving men and women, but also to have “iron in our bones,” and to stand firm in our faith  – to admonish each other (warn each other), and help each other become who we are supposed to be (encourage each other in spiritual growth).

I’m excited in this stage of life, we’re so ready for this new baby boy, and can’t wait hold him and see the person he’s going to become.

Kids, Honesty, & Breast Implants

 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I remember growing up and being comfortable asking my parents any question whatsoever.  They were honest parents… even about situations or circumstances that were painful or hard to talk about.  Of course, being young I thought everyone’s experience was the same – it surprised me when I was a pre-teen to a teenager, and even into college to find out friends weren’t able to communicate as well with their own moms & dads.  It made me sad for them, because as a child, who else do you have to depend on if not your parents for getting the important questions answered in life?

I learned so many things about life and people from hearing my parents talk about it.  Yes, they were biased in many ways (their bias leaned toward a morality way of thinking – they were not people who embraced the lie that everything is true and good for you), my mom in particular, was careful to impart knowledge to me on being a woman, Christian, mother, and wife.  She showed me the lies that feminists believe early on, calling them Femi-Nazis :).  She talked about the importance of not having premarital sex, and the typical lies you hear from society to make you think its really beneficial.  She talked about cohabitation & the detriments of wasting your youth and beauty on a man not committed to you.  She even showed me a cousin in our family who had lived with a man throughout her 20’s – someone who never committed to her – only to have to dump him (he was also conveniently a bum), and go on to be single well into her 40’s while many of her friends had already gotten married, and had teenagers by that time.  I even heard my cousin confirm what my mother had educated me on when younger, acknowledging that she “wasted her twenties away,” and didn’t really start living her life right until her 30’s.

She talked about the sordid dangers of alcohol abuse, and showed me members of our Catholic family who either were alcoholics or were recovering alcoholics. She talked about family dynamics and divorce, showing me how it affected the children well into adulthood and again, used examples from our own family so that the truth would really be obvious.  She talked about religion, having grown up Catholic and feeling like she could never please God (a common ex-Catholic complaint), she told me the story of her hearing Billy Graham preaching on God’s love and grace and how she remembered the day she became a true Christian.  Because of her background, she was quick to point out the differences in Protestant and Catholic faith, and talked about many family members who endured truly messed up lives because of their Catholic beliefs.  Relatives who’d had too many children and either became sexually frigid with their husbands (because of the terrifying aspect of them getting pregnant again) and ruining their marriage, or in one horrible family case, becoming insanely abusive to some of their kids because they simply couldn’t handle that many children.  In the latter situation, the abuse was so bad that it caused one of my cousins to be permanently brain damaged for the rest of his life.

She and my father freely talked about all this together, much like how my husband and I talk about any and everything.  We’re already honest with our son in anything he wants to know about – and for a child who’s only 4, he wants to know about things I’d never dreamed he would ask me at this age.  He already knows about the world, the detriment of our country, a little of politics, child abuse, neglect, the basics of Christianity and what the Bible talks about, things we don’t agree with the President on, divorce, adoption, miscarriage, abortion (that was a hard one to tell him… it was hard to explain that there are many women who would kill the baby inside them simply because they don’t want a child), and many other issues.  Most parents would think that we’re too open with him on these things, we don’t think so at all.  We explain them age appropriately, but we don’t gloss over or hide negative information in some kind of backwards attempt to shelter him from the world and life, and the evil that’s in it.  He’s going to hear many of these things in school from other children, and I want him to be prepared and have knowledge in hand to be able to understand the lies or truths he will hear about controversial topics.

My father was so open and honest as well, I remember when I was a late teenager being upset that I hadn’t gotten past a B cup in breast growth.  I was tall and slender, and my mother had already tried reassuring me that a size B was perfect for my slenderness – Gisele Bundchen even at the time, was my size & a Victoria’s Secret model (my mother pointed out gladly)!  But even with knowing that a super model shared my breast size, I still needed reassurance.  I actually felt comfortable enough to talk to my dad about it, something I know most teenage girls would probably never feel comfortable doing.  But I asked him because I knew he’d answer me honestly, I had respect for him and trusted him immensely.

I asked him if it would be worth it to consider breast implants later – if it would be better if they were bigger.

As weird as it might’ve been for him, he didn’t show it at all, and let me know that it was fine – that men really don’t place that much importance on breast size (that its more women who obsess about big breasts).  He had always told me how beautiful I was, fathers have so much influence on a girl’s confidence which reflects in her beauty, and he told me how the size I had was fine & that a good guy (the kind I wanted to marry) would appreciate so much more than breast size in me.

Of course, I already instinctively knew that, but sometimes kids/teens ask questions to their parents as a sort of “testing” to see if what they’ll say.  And their words hold so much power over kids, and if they are trusted and admired, their words hold that same power for their teenagers.  It was important for me to hear from a male that I loved and trusted that my beauty went far beyond just breast size.

My parents didn’t hide anything, even their mistakes and failures.  My mother was honest about how she had gained too much weight during her pregnancies with me, and again with my brother.

She warned me how hard it was to be overweight – and how hard it is to lose weight after you’ve already gained over 20 pounds.  She taught me about having a healthy body image, but didn’t pretend like being overweight was some kind of thing to be accepted.  She made sure I exercised and ate healthy foods, and talked about the benefits of staying healthy and in shape the rest of my life.

She pointed to women in the family who’d had children and yet kept great shapes (something she’d failed at).  She wasn’t insecure and jealous of them, she instead used them as good role models as wives and mothers.  Because she was so honest and open, my respect and admiration for her sky-rocketed, even if she failed in gaining too much weight… she was honest about her mistakes, and that’s really what matters most in parents.

Its interesting that my husband had the opposite experience of not being able to ask any important questions in his family.  Maybe they would’ve been open to talking about things, but he just simply felt like he couldn’t bring them up.  When there was something embarrassing or painful in his family like a divorce or even a child’s death, the older parents, aunts, and uncles would “shelter” the children in the family by not giving them any information.  The problem with this approach was that he never felt like he knew much about those difficult topics, how one should handle them correctly, or in the case of divorce, it was unclear why it even happened (it was literally never explained or talked about)… because they were shameful things, to be hidden from view – and not something the family viewed that the children could gain understanding from.  Its almost like a lying by omission to exclude important details that a parent may find “too much” for a child.  We really underestimate their ability to learn and understand lessons in life – lessons that come from the painful or hard experiences that families go through.  Children need to know about life, and the situations that arise during their lifetime are a wealth of knowledge to them if their parents are keen to use it and educate them appropriately.

In our marriage now, we frequently bring up important topics so that our son can engage in conversation and learn about them – and he often does.  We don’t hide anything from him except for things that wouldn’t be deemed age appropriate details.

No topic is taboo in our family, and he knows and loves the comfort of knowing we’re honest parents.

How Christianity & Early Feminism Messed Up Sex & Marriage

catholic nonsense

 

I took my son to the library to return books & movies and pick out a few for the next week.  We went late, we were rushed, and the library was about to close, but in we went anyway 🙂 against all odds.  We got his new books picked out along with some cartoons, and turned to get Mommy a book for herself.  With my 4 year old starting to tantrum, whining that he couldn’t stay longer (they were about to kick us out), I quickly grabbed the first book that looked interesting to me – A History of the Wife – not even completely aware of what genre I was in.

The best things come about when you’re not looking for them – or when you ironically grab a book you would’ve never chosen to read.  After getting home, eating dinner, and putting my little one to bed, I got to relax and curl up with my book – a little excited that I didn’t know quite what it was that I grabbed.  When I read some of the beginning, I could easily tell this was a book written by a feminist.  She looked down upon the Proverbs 31 woman as a ridiculous model for a good wife, looked down on the biblical theology of Eve coming after Adam, the biblical notion of women submitting to their husbands, etc.  Even though I disagreed with her take on Christianity, I welcomed this chance to read what a feminist really thinks about the role of a wife – how she views history, even biblical history – to help me understand that point of view.

As a whole, her book truly reminded me of why feminism, at one point in time, was very needed and necessary in order to obtain equal rights for women.  However, all throughout history, especially within the last 200 years, I was also reminded of how the feminist ideology is so backwards and often times, overboard with its claims and demands.  It was very intriguing to learn about the very first feminists, their lives, how they viewed their role as a mother or wife, how they treated their children or husband due to their “modern woman” thinking.

These first feminists sometimes left their husbands (or lived apart for years, refusing their husbands’ attempts to get them to live together, in what the author described as a “modern marriage”), they often had children only to resent the responsibility of them, or go as far as to leave them with aunts to raise so that they could focus on their careers (can you believe it – even feminists today usually don’t go so far).  They resented “motherhood,” were adamant in calling even a good marriage “slavery.”  They dominated their husbands (yuck!), purposefully marrying weak men who would let them have their way, and focused solely on their happiness versus any happiness of their husband or children.  It was eye-opening to take in the fact that this isn’t something new in our current society… this “view” of womanhood was brewing 200 years ago from women who were discontent and extremely selfish in their pursuits of marriage and children.

I had always thought that the ideas of “modern thinking” or “modern marriages” really were modern, created recently with the 1970’s… now I understand, from reading many accounts in this book, that true feminism is nothing “modern,” as its been around a couple of centuries, unless you count for the fact that the “modern” view that was different from the centuries before placed aggressive selfishness to be the center-point of what should drive women (not men, only women mind you) in all their decisions of work, life, and family.

Wow!  Talk about an eye-opening book experience for me.  I will write more in the next few weeks on the various of topics that the author reveals.  The first that was striking to me was the clear revelation of when sex and marriage became twisted in Christianity.  Many cultures before had a general understanding of sex in a marriage, however, once Catholicism came onto the scene, an unbiblical model of sexuality was introduced, and created some of the very first “feminists” who rejected their role as wife and mother in order to remain “pure” and sexless.

Virginity was idolized, literally, with the Catholic church setting up Mary as the Queen of Heaven to be worshipped and prayed to, and later on in the 1950’s ascribed to be an Immaculate Conception – claiming that Mary herself, was born without sin (and stayed pure because she was a virgin).  To be fair, this was not found at the very beginning of Catholicism.  In the fourth century, Jovinian and Saint John Chrysostome defended marriage and claimed that a wife wasn’t an “obstacle to salvation, but an aid,” claiming that married life was just as worthy (and holy) as celibate life.  It was later that Saint Jerome and Saint Augustine embraced and put forth the ideas that marriage was merely a necessary evil, and a hindrance to a person’s spiritual life.

Later, I’ll write on the personal stories and examples from past times that explain in depth what these women were going through, and what influenced their decisions to reject traditional marriage.  Its been an interesting journey looking into feminism at its roots, and educating people on where it came from, and how it affected sex & marriage back then (and how we’re still affected today), is going to be hopefully enlightening for anyone interested in these topics.

 

Thank you for reading!