We want to say, “Good riddance!” to 2020, toss it in the dumpster and set it ablaze. We would like to turn our backs and walk into the new year of 2021. If we do that, we will lose all the treasures hidden in darkness, all the lessons learned from challenge, all the wisdom gained in hardship, all the promises fulfilled in ways we didn’t expect. At the beginning of 2020, God was telling us that it would be a Good and Blessed New Year, and it really has been! All His words and prophecies were true. In fact, it has been our best year yet.
I hesitated to write this article, because I didn’t want to make any of my readers feel bad if they didn’t have a year as wonderful as mine. But it is simply a matter of perspective. I think that God would like all of us to concentrate on His blessings rather than the trials. If I made a list of all my heartaches, fears, doubts, and hard times in 2020, you would most certainly pity me and be glad you didn’t have my life. Yet in every life, the blessings and the trials dwell side by side. And the trials actually turn into blessings if we let God have His way.
I used to live in a state of perpetual self-pity. I spent a lot of time feeling sick and tired and grumpy, and every new hardship was confirmation that I was a victim. I didn’t realize that I had taken on an orphan identity that was in opposition to God and the Bible. It just felt like normal life, and normal life was incredibly hard!
It took years for God to renew my mind, peel back the layers, and reveal my victim perspective. A victim mindset produces victim thoughts and victim thoughts produce victim decisions. Victim decisions would lead me away from God’s goodness and into deeper darkness. I didn’t need a change of circumstance, I needed a change in perspective. I was an eagle living in the dirt, but God has taught me how to fly.
I do sometimes forget to fly. So I proclaim over myself, “I pursued my enemies, and I did not turn back until they were destroyed (Ps 18:37)! Fear, you have no hold on me! Victim spirit, orphan spirit, you have no place in me! I am wonderfully well and blessed and highly favored of the Lord. I am his favorite daughter! He has put a crown on my head…” and on and on until I have confessed every good scripture that I can think of.
If you are beholding the LORD, then you will go from glory to glory (2 Cor 3:18). Each year will be better than the last because you are drawing nearer to Him and He is drawing nearer to you!
One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are by Ann Voskamp really helped me change my thought patterns and grow the joy center of my brain. I started keeping a journal of all that I was thankful for, writing a few things each day. At first it took some thought, but pretty soon the blessings would come to my mind faster than I could write or keep track of. I got to one thousand and beyond with no trouble. Now I am in the habit of falling asleep thanking God and waking up thanking God. Some days I must force myself to do it just to push out the discouraging thoughts, but most days it flows naturally.
I decided to write down all the amazing things God had done for us in 2020. Then Chris reminded me of additional blessings that I had forgotten about. We talked about it as a family, and the children remembered even more. It really was the best year yet!
You don’t even have to read my list. The main point is for you to compile your own. It may take days or weeks, talking to family and friends, and reviewing journals and photos, but it is worth the effort. It may just take you from the valley to the clouds and beyond.
Why 2020 has been My Best Year Yet
I have been singing truth over myself every morning. I have been filled with more confidence and boldness and spent less time in discouragement and lies.
I have been waiting on the Lord almost every morning and there is nothing better than hearing His voice.
I have renewed strength and energy – not as tired or overwhelmed.
I have taken a walk almost every morning and I have never been so immersed in the beauty of my own neighborhood in every season.
I found renewed joy in homeschooling. The children got better nutrition and better spiritual discipleship since their schools closed.
Two of my adult children have been home for most of the year. They helped me without being asked and I loved their company.
We spent a week in the best vacation rental we have ever had.
Chris and I fulfilled our 24 year desire to return to Cape May.
We were able to save money in many different ways.
My daughter Ashlyn had a better-than-expected experience during and after spinal fusion surgery.
No sickness in our home except colds.
My boys have wanted to go to church.
I was able to start making kefir and taking supplements again.
After living many years with a leaky roof, we were able to get a new roof with no debt.
I hiked Hawk Rock with the family. I hadn’t done it in 27 years. It was definitely challenging but it felt easier than when I was in my teens!
We finally got a membership to the State museum and used it many times. My dad used to work at the museum, and it was there that I spent many happy childhood days.
On our porch we had yellow mums for autumn and festive lights for Christmas for the first time.
We grew closer to a wonderful group of friends and have never felt more thankful to be able to spend time with them.
I have never been more excited to attend church! I have watched many church leaders rise up in a new boldness. I have witnessed the Ekklesia work together like never before.
I have lived through an amazing year that history will look back on as the beginning of the Second Revolutionary/Civil War, a precursor to the Third Great Awakening when America turned back to God!
We are all waiting for this historic election to be decided. We are seeking God, praying, fasting, and pressing in like never before. We believe that The United States of America will fulfill her God given destiny to be a place of Liberty and Justice for all!
On 11/23/20 God gave me a series of prophetic experiences. I was so encouraged with fresh hope and faith.
It started out with a dream. It seemed important, but I had no idea what it meant. I pondered it throughout the day.
At 9:15 I had an appointment with my chiropractor. We began talking about all the wonderful things God has been speaking to His prophets, and how we are so excited to see God’s plan unfold in America.
I said, “Even though some people feel that 2020 has just been one bad thing after another, I think that God is answering our prayers. We have prayed for revival and this is the process that will prepare for it.”
The Church has a purpose and identity that she needs to walk in. The U.S. has a purpose and identity that she needs to walk in. What if all the circumstances of 2020 have been tailor made to bring this about?
I did look it up and listened to it as I drove to the library and the grocery store. According to Dutch, God has been speaking to His people through dreams lately. He recounted the dreams of several people he knew. The way they all connected and shared the same message was something only God could have orchestrated. I felt my hope increasing.
After lunch I had to drive to the dentist, so I continued listening to Dutch Sheets. As he spoke, the details of my dream from the night before began to make sense. I felt God open my mind with revelation.
Through the windshield of my van, I caught sight of a bird that looked like any other black bird except its wings formed a straight line rather than a V.
“That could be an eagle!” I thought to myself. “I should keep an eye on that bird.”
I stopped at the corner, put on my hazards, and put the vehicle in park. Eagle watching is serious business for me. God has spoken life changing words each of the nine times I have seen one. The eagles seemed to be coming closer. My last eagle sighting was just 10 minutes from my home.
As soon as I looked up, I could see that the black bird had a white head and a white tail.
A BALD EAGLE!
I got out of the van to get a better look. Bald Eagle # 10 circled above me and it was so close. I was thrilled because this eagle was in my neighborhood, just ONE BLOCK FROM MY HOME!
It is coming closer! God’s promises! Revival! My identity!
I had paused the video of Dutch Sheetz but I wrote down the time that I had spotted the eagle. This is what Dutch had been saying when the eagle appeared:
“There is a Third Great Awakening coming that is going to bring such a transformation to this nation. God’s going to do in such a short time what we couldn’t have done in human effort in a century. He’s going to undo 150 years of humanistic brainwashing and secularism and anti-Christ mindsets and corruption and evil, that’s coming such a sweeping revival and movement of God’s Spirit to this nation that it is going to be a tidal wave of power and anointing and the wind of the Holy Ghost is going to breathe through this land.
And it’s gonna hit the campuses, it’s gonna hit the inner cities, and it’s gonna hit Washington and State capitals and office buildings. I’m telling you that God’s going to pour out his Spirit in the greatest revival the earth has ever seen – to America and the nations of the earth.”
So be encouraged! We are waiting on the Lord. The wind of His presence is lifting us up. Let’s practice flying in the tranquil breezes and in the mighty gales. Let’s get ready for the wind of the Holy Ghost that is surely coming!
A few years ago I didn’t believe that I would ever see an eagle. God worked out incredible circumstances to convince me otherwise. I was starting to accept my identity as His Eagle, and I asked Him to allow me to spot a real eagle. My first eagle sighting happened on vacation, hours north from our home. I was filled with awe and gratitude to my Good Father!
However, I still didn’t believe that I would see another eagle once I returned home. God surprised me again with His goodness when the second time happened during my weekly drive to the farm to get milk and eggs.
Eagle sighting # 3 was with my son, home on leave from the Marines. We were driving to a state park. I had prayed and asked God to show me an eagle. A few minutes later, there it was, flying above our van. God used that eagle to remind me that:
We don’t belong with those who turn back and are destroyed. Instead, we belong with those who have faith and are saved.
Hebrews 10:35-39 (God’s Word)
Eagle sightings #4, #5,and #6 were up north again during our next family vacation. I was reminded that God encounters are all around us, we just need the eyes to recognize them!
Eagle #7 was soaring 10 minutes from home. I was amazed that eagles lived so close!
God spoke to me that my eagle sightings were like something else I had been praying for: REVIVAL!
Revival with miracles, healings, salvations, and deliverances happening all around me.
That which seemed impossible has become a part of my normal life. Now I expect to see an eagle as I gaze out of my kitchen window, watching the birds perch on the church across the street.
“Someday, I will see a bald eagle right there! Someday I will see revival right here, in my neighborhood, in my own house!” I often think to myself.
Eagle #8 appeared at a State Park in February as I pondered the Good and Blessed New Year of 2020! Our plans for the year were very uncertain, yet I was full of hope I surrendered to God’s wonderful will, whatever that turned out to be. I had no idea what crazy events 2020 had in store.
Now that it is December, I can still say that it has been a Good and Blessed year, and I have come to know God more than ever before.
Eagle #9 was just 5 minutes from our home. We were heading out for a family day, and I was feeling especially discouraged. We were passing road signs that were normally used to update drivers on accidents or adverse weather conditions. They were flashing messages that I would expect to see in a Socialist State, not in my beloved country. Here in the USA we have freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of assemble, freedom to work and earn a living, freedom to innovate and run your own business, and freedom to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Reminders that these freedoms are being taken away are everywhere. Lately it feels stressful to leave the house, never knowing what the “rules” are, how and if the “rules” are being enforced, and what extreme viewpoints you might encounter.
When I saw that eagle I realized, God is right here! In my town!
I can be that eagle. I can soar above the circumstances right now. I can go out into my city, the land of my inheritance, and claim it for the kingdom of God. I can be full of joy and tell people good news wherever I go. Even if others are walking in fear and offense, I don’t have to. Jesus is King of this land and I am His Eagle.
God continues to speak to me with eagles and I spotted Eagle # 10 just a few weeks ago…
I conducted a survey on Facebook. I asked my friends who supported Donald Trump to tell me why. I received 21 replies which contained 35 reasons. I have simplified the answers and ranked them by popularity.
Funding of Historically Black Colleges in perpetuity
Middle East peace treaty (Abraham Accord)
Women’s empowerment through programs for education, jobs/equal pay, maternity leave, etc
Prison reform policies
Strengthening of military and establishing the Space Force
Opening the White House to intercessory prayer and worship
Authentic love of his children – their poise, intelligence and love for him
Surrounding himself with strong, intelligent (and beautiful) women starting with Melania
His ideology has never changed – watch interviews with Larry King, Oprah, Phil Donahue from ’80s and ’90s
Focus on Natural Resources
It is easy to see why Trump has been meeting enthusiastic crowds of thousands of people everywhere he goes. If this list seems too good to be true, our you just love to research and discover facts for yourself, I have two wonderfully thorough and documented articles for you.
Before the last election, I noticed a strange phenomenon that I hadn’t observed before. I had been used to people praising their favored candidate and criticizing the opposing candidate. Politics could be hard to debate without arguments. However, when Donald Trump arrived on the scene, I was surprised by how some people reacted to any mention of his name or any post about him on social media with unfettered hatred.
There was so much anger expressed that logical conversations seemed impossible. I wondered why.
It seemed as those people who hated Trump had been personally offended by him. It was as if they had invited Donald Trump to dinner in their home and he had insulted their cooking and spit in their faces. It was as if they had met Donald in the school yard and he had pinned them to the asphalt and humiliated them in front of the other kids.
“How can they be so offended at a man they have never met?” I asked myself over and over for the past four years. The answer began to come as I caught a news-show or talk-show in a doctor’s waiting room, or as I watched a clip of late night television or a video on the internet.
The media was offended at Donald Trump.
They would express their disgust and distain for him in a way that evoked a deep emotional response in the audience. The American people were being constantly and consistently conditioned to be offended at the man. It didn’t matter if the media would tell lies, because if they said it often enough it seemed like the truth. It didn’t matter if they exaggerated certain facts, left out other facts, and just plain made things up. It didn’t matter if they took a sound bite out of an entire speech and put a different spin on it. (Click here for just one example of this practice called “journalistic malfeasance.”)
The media created a thousand different hooks to catch a moral and compassionate person. If a person took the bait, it would keep them tied to the negative words or images that were displayed. They were caught in offense; hook, line, and sinker.
In 2018, the Media Research Center reported that 92% of all mainstream media coverage of Trump was negative. And it hasn’t let up. It has gotten worse and worse.
I had realized many years ago, long before Trump ran for president, not to waste my time on mainstream media, the news or TV shows, Hollywood and most of what came out of Hollywood.
Why? Because it filled my head with negative thoughts, glorified violent and immoral images, and presented lies as facts. Most people in the media did not live lives that I wanted to emulate, and as the saying goes, “You become what you behold.” I decided that there were much better things to behold such as Jesus, the Bible, good literature, and men and women who had characters that I could trust. I never got hooked by the offense that the media and the left had been generating. I simply didn’t give them the time of day.
Perhaps you feel justified in your dislike for Donald Trump. That is fine. You don’t have to like him. You don’t have to vote for him. But if you hold on to offense, it hurts you, not Trump. Offense is just unforgiveness. We all have the opportunity to get offended many times each day. It can happen in an instant.
My little daughter will come to me with tears in her eyes, telling a pitiful story of the injustices inflicted upon her by an older sibling. I am immediately offended at my older child, thinking, “How could they do something like that?” Once I hear the older child’s side of the story, usually my offense dissipates as I realize that both children were at fault. I am trying to skip the entire offense process to simply listen and ask God for discernment.
Some things don’t bother us and other offenses we hold on to for hours, days, months, even years. But WE get to decide how long we want to be in bondage to unforgiveness. Perhaps the person who offended us really did or said something bad. Or perhaps we just couldn’t see the situation from the other person’s perspective. Perhaps Donald Trump has done or said things that were bad. Or perhaps it is a matter of your perspective. Either way, you don’t have to stay in bondage to that.
You can forgive him.
You NEED to forgive him if you want to live a happy and healthy life.
Many health care professionals, neuroscientists, and doctors agree that 95% of disease has a mental/emotional component. One of the worst choices for your mental and physical health is unforgiveness. It is like a cancer, eating away at your insides.
You NEED to forgive him if you want to be forgiven of your own wrong doings.
Matthew 6:14 “For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you..”
Mark 11:25 “And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
Matt 7:2 “For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
You NEED to forgive him so that you won’t be blinded by deception.
What we are witnessing in this country is a large group of people who can no longer discern right from wrong, truth from lies. When I asked God why many in the church no longer defend the Bible or Life or the freedoms of the Constitution, I felt God answered,
“They listened to voices that were not mine. Those voices stirred up offense. Some people have been harboring and feeding that offense for four years, and now they are blind.”
About week later Wanda Alger posted a new article and she said this,
“Offenses blind us to the truth and give a distorted view of reality. There are those within the body of Christ who are convinced they are pursuing a righteous cause when, in fact, their cause is rooted in offense, both personal and corporate. Unfortunately, bitter roots only open the door to deception and defilement (see Hebrews 12:15). We must keep our own hearts clear of offense and pray for those who revile us.”
I asked my friends who didn’t support Trump to tell me why. I expected them to explain how his policies have been bad for America or point out specific parts of his platform that they didn’t agree with. Instead I received descriptions of how the man had offended them with his pride, criticism of others, lack of intelligence, promotion of violence and division, and mean words. They called him things like narcissist, liar, and cheater. They didn’t consider him fit to lead our country. That is fine. That is their opinion. But their offensive is hurting them, and I pray they can let it go.
Are you offended at Donald Trump?
Did the title of this article irk you?
Does the sight of Donald Trump cause anger or disgust to well up within you?
Do you call Donald Trump demeaning names?
Do you find yourself wishing harm on him or rejoicing when something bad happens to him or his family?
Do you get angry when discussing him?
Do you find the need to tell Trump supporters how awful their chosen candidate is?
It might be possible that you need to forgive him.
You don’t need to like him.
You don’t need to vote for him.
Just forgive him.
You could honor his position as President and pray for him! You might just get a different perspective!
I have lived in Pennsylvania most of my life and never had the opportunity to go to the major cities. When I would say I had never been to Philadelphia or Pittsburgh, people would give me funny looks. “How could you live in Pennsylvania and not have been to Philadelphia or Pittsburgh?” they would say.
Just recently I was able to travel to one of these cities: Pittsburgh. I went because I heard that Sean Feucht was coming and doing one of his “Let Us Worship” events.
“Let Us Worship” started on the Golden Gate Bridge in California when it was announced by the governor that the churches in the state could not sing in church. Sean felt he had to do something.
Over 300 people came to worship and declare life over the state of California.
Over the next several months Sean and his team have brought worship to many cities all over the United States. Some of these cities were Portland, Seattle, Chicago, New York City, and Sacramento. In almost every place they were met with resistance, but nothing could stop the miracles, salvations, or baptisms. I was so encouraged every time I would read or watch an update.
These were the thoughts going through my head as I drove to Pittsburg. I was overcome with thankfulness as I passes by the endless Pennsylvania hills bursting with color.
I was going to a new place and worshiping Jesus at the same time!
After I met my friend (I had not seen her in a long time so it was a joyous reunion), she joined me and we went together to the park that the event was to be located. It was hard to find at first because the park was so big. We passed playgrounds, grass fields, and tree groves before we found the spot in front of Carnegie Mellon University.
We could hear the musicians warming up as we walked towards the stage. People were already gathered and waiting in anticipation.
As we worshiped, I could feel the presence of God and the joy that He brings. There was so much freedom as everyone danced and sang at the top of their lungs. The problems of everyday life no longer seemed important.
Some people were experiencing this freedom for the first time and ran to the front to receive Jesus as the Lord of their life. You could see the joy on their faces. This joy was contagious as everyone who watched celebrated with them.
Reconciliation was received as people from every race prayed together. People got baptized, dying to themselves and coming out of the water as new creatures.
The whole night I was in awe of all that God was doing. I felt so encouraged to see that God is doing things in this nation, no matter how bad things seem. That is why I wanted to write about my night in Pittsburg. To tell others that God has not stopped working.
Take heart and don’t let the darkness put out your light.
Sean will be doing a worship event in Washington D.C on October 25th. You are invited to be there! If you can’t be there in person then you can pray. Pray that God would continue to open the eyes of the people of the United States and that we as a nation would come to Him in repentance.
Chris and I got married 24 four years ago. (I wrote about our romance in my article, “Our love Story is my Favorite.”) We honeymooned on Brigantine Island. We spent one day in Cape May and loved the beautiful seaside town. We vowed to go back someday. Many times we talked about it. We even tried to plan it. Finally, after 24 years we were able to fulfill our desire!
Our first honeymoon was in August. We were 20 and 21. We had enjoyed our wedding and celebrating with our friends at the best reception dance party we have ever attended, before or since! We left the worrying to others, and we just enjoyed the day.
Before we set out for New Jersey, we had to return to our apartment. It was full of wedding gifts and cards but little else. When you are young and in love, what else do you need?
Well, for a honeymoon, a little cash would be nice!
We opened up all the cards and gathered the cash. We had enough to eat out a few times, catch a movie, and buy souvenirs.
We felt incredibly blessed!
We had no cell phone. There was no social media. We were blissfully isolated and free to follow whatever schedule we happened upon. I am so glad our spontaneity took us to Cape May.
Many times over the years we have talked about returning. Finally after much discussion, research, planning, and dreaming, all factors converged in a glorious miracle! Two of our adult children were still home to watch the younger seven while friends helped out. Chris got off work. We had spending money to do what we hadn’t been able to do the first time, (such as a historic trolley tour plus a tour of Elem Physick Estate.)
We felt incredibly blessed!
We went first to the Cape May Light House.
When the woman at the top of the light house found out that we had been there on our honeymoon, she gave us a special shell with, “Cape May” painted on it along with free tickets to the WWII Lookout.
We felt God’s Favor!
Once we had descended the 199 steps, we walked to the beach just behind the light house.
We walked over to the Cape May Point State Park and had fun pretending to be wildlife photographers.
Then we ate a packed supper while we watched the sunset on Sunset Beach.
The next morning I got Chris out of bed early so we could watch the sunrise on Broadway Beach. It was too cloudy for the colors of the sun to penetrate, so we just sat and soaked in the sound of the pounding waves and the peace.
I was sitting in the borrowed beach chair, trying to quiet my mind. I realized that this was it!
We were sitting in the fullness of a desire fulfilled.
I tried to let all my burdens go out with the tide and be washed by God’s goodness, as faithful and constant as the waves. What a year 2020 had been so far, one of our very best years as a couple and as a family. Then God spoke to me Psalm 128. It seemed too good to be true, that God was saying this directly to us at this time!
We tried to enjoy every moment of our romantic getaway. Worries and heaviness would creep in. The next morning we received a text from a lifelong friend that read,
“I pray you are having the most awesome time away together!!!! You guys are such a wonderful blessing to so many and such a strength to me as my friends. May you be overwhelmed by God’s goodness.”
I felt awe and wonder, to be so blessed with friends that were praying for us while we were on vacation! I was determined to make Psalm 128 our vacation mantra.
All you who fear God, how blessed you are!
how happily you walk on his smooth straight road!
You worked hard and deserve all you’ve got coming.
Enjoy the blessing!
Revel in the goodness!
Your wife will bear children as a vine bears grapes,
your household lush as a vineyard, The children around your table as fresh and promising as young olive shoots.
Stand in awe of God’s Yes.
Oh, how he blesses the one who fears God!
Enjoy the good life in Jerusalem every day of your life.
A large contingent of people who support abortion contend that an unborn baby is not a life, therefore has no rights and cannot be “murdered.” Is life something that is up for debate? Or are there specific parameters that define life.
As it turns out, there is a science that studies just this subject: biology, the study of living organisms. How does biology define life?
A distinctive characteristic of a living organism from dead organism or non-living thing, as specifically distinguished by the capacity to grow, metabolize, respond (to stimuli), adapt, and reproduce
Dr. Steven Jacobs was doing research for his dissertation:
Since these sources suggested the most common view was that a human’s life begins at fertilization, I designed a survey to understand biologists’ assessment of that view. I emailed surveys to professors in the biology departments of over 1,000 institutions around the world.
As the usable responses began to come in, I found that 5,337 biologists (96%) affirmed that a human’s life begins at fertilization,
with 240 (4%) rejecting that view. The majority of the sample identified as liberal (89%), pro-choice (85%) and non-religious (63%). In the case of Americans who expressed party preference, the majority identified as Democrats (92%).
Biologist aren’t the only ones who observe that life begins at conception. So do doctors.
Dr. Alfred M. Bongioanni, professor of pediatrics and obstetrics at the University of Pennsylvania, stated:
“I have learned from my earliest medical education that human life begins at the time of conception…. I submit that human life is present throughout this entire sequence from conception to adulthood and that any interruption at any point throughout this time constitutes a termination of human life….
I am no more prepared to say that these early stages [of development in the womb] represent an incomplete human being than I would be to say that the child prior to the dramatic effects of puberty…is not a human being. This is human life at every stage.”
“Dr. Bernard Nathanson, internationally known obstetrician and gynecologist, was a cofounder of what is now the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL). He owned and operated what was at the time the largest abortion clinic in the western hemisphere. He was directly involved in over sixty thousand abortions. Dr. Nathanson’s study of developments in the science of fetology and his use of ultrasound to observe the unborn child in the womb led him to the conclusion that he had made a horrible mistake. Resigning from his lucrative position, Nathanson wrote in the New England Journal of Medicine that he was deeply troubled by his “increasing certainty that I had in fact presided over 60,000 deaths.” – from Why Life Begins At Conception
“Modern technologies have convinced us that beyond question the unborn child is simply another human being, another member of the human community, indistinguishable in every way from any of us.” – Dr. Nathanson
The article also states, “A prominent physician points out that at these Senate hearings,
“Pro-abortionists, though invited to do so, failed to produce even a single expert witness who would specifically testify that life begins at any point other than conception or implantation. Only one witness said no one can tell when life begins.”
ABSTRACT: The predominance of human biological research confirms that human life begins at conception—fertilization. At fertilization, the human being emerges as a whole, genetically distinct, individuated zygotic living human organism, a member of the species Homo sapiens, needing only the proper environment in order to grow and develop. The difference between the individual in its adult stage and in its zygotic stage is one of form, not nature. This statement focuses on the scientific evidence of when an individual human life begins.
I am no scientist, although my favorite class in High School was AP Biology. However, I have a qualification to comment on this subject.
I have spent a little over 7 years of my life carrying other lives inside of my body.
At conception they have a unique genetic code and immediately begin to grow and develop. Soon their heart begins to beat and I can hear it at my first appointments with the midwife. Soon they have their own brainwaves and thoughts. They begin to move and react to the environment. Boy, do they begin to move! They cannot feel my pain and I cannot feel theirs, because we have totally separate nervous systems. I cannot control their decisions or movements. When I am getting to my due date, all I can do is ask nicely, “Baby, please be born today!” but I cannot make them drop into the birth canal head first. And before they are born I get an idea of their personality by how and when and with what intensity they move.
Each pregnancy was different and each life that was growing inside of me was different. Each one was a miracle that science can only begin to understand!
When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice, she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy.”
The Greek word used to describe Elizabeth’s unborn baby is the same word used in Luke 2:12 and 2:16 to describe the newborn baby Jesus and in Luke 18:15 to describe the babies that the people were bringing to Jesus to touch.
The Bible makes no differentiation between a baby in the womb and a baby that has been born.
Elizabeth also called Mary the mother of her Lord. Mary quickly went to see Elizabeth when she received the news from the angel that she would become pregnant by the Holy Spirit. She was most likely in her first trimester. The Jesus inside of her was referred to as Lord, the same word for Lord that was used hundreds of times in the New Testament to describe the man Jesus.
The Bible makes no differentiation between Jesus in his fetus form and Jesus in his full grown man form.
“If men struggle with each other and strike a woman with child so that she gives birth prematurely, yet there is no injury, he shall surely be fined as the woman’s husband may demand of him, and he shall pay as the judges decide. But if there is any further injury, then you shall appoint as a penalty life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.”
Old Testament Law also viewed the unborn as a life. Striking a pregnant woman was a punishable offense. If there was injury to her or the baby as a result, then it was a life for a life. In Num. 35:9-15 there is a law that says anyone who kills someone accidentally may flee to a refugee city. The life for life penalty was not in place.
So accidental injury to a pregnant woman or unborn baby was a more serious offense to God than other accidental deaths. Accidentally causing the death of an unborn child carried the same weight as intentional murder.
There are other scriptures that show God’s special care of pregnant women, babies, and children.
“He [the Lord] tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.”
Matt 19:14, Mark 10:14, Luke 18:16
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
“It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea, than that he would cause one of these little ones to stumble.”
The formation of a human is not just the result of biological forces. God is present in the womb, crafting the new life Himself.
“For You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
God has a destiny for each child before they are born.
Jer 1:5 “And before you were born I consecrated you; I have appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
Gal 1:15 “But when God, who had set me apart even from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace…”
Scriptures Affirm the Purpose and Destiny of a Life Exists even before Conception.
Jer 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you…”
Eph 1:4-5 4 “For He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless in His presence. In love He predestined us for adoption as His sons through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of His will,…”
Romans 9:10-12“Not only that, but Rebecca’s children were conceived by one man, our father Isaac. Yet before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad, in order that God’s plan of election might stand, not by works but by Him who calls, she was told, “The older will serve the younger.”
Romans 8:29 “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.”
The Bible is clear. Abortion is the murder of a life that God created, the ending of a purpose and destiny, and violates God’s special favor on pregnant women and little ones.
As a young teen I was asked if I supported legalized abortion, and I said no. Then I was asked about cases when the mother had been raped. My answer was, “Well, in that case it wasn’t her fault, so she should be allowed to get an abortion if she wants to.” I didn’t understand what abortion really was, what it entailed, or what it meant for the baby or for the mother.
At age 14, I had an incredible salvation experience where Jesus came into my heart, the scales fell off my eyes, and the entire world looked different to me. I started going to a non-denominational church, reading the Bible with awe and wonder, and learning to hear God’s voice.
After high school I spent a year with Youth With A Mission doing their Discipleship Training School and their School of Evangelism. I learned so much about God, the Bible, marriage, families, education, homeschooling, and abortion. We had a teacher, Bev Kline, who ran a ministry for pregnant women in crisis. They offered support, counseling, and a home to live in. This incredible woman told our class her story. She had had two abortions and spent many years under incredible pain and guilt. She found healing through Jesus and now spent her life extending that healing to others. She tried to talk to women considering abortion, to spare them the heartache she went through. Bev helped many women keep their babies and see them thrive in their new lives as single mothers. She helped others lovingly give their babies up for adoption.
She had found a purpose and passion in life and was filled with peace and joy. But she never forgot the birthdays of the two children she had aborted and looked forward to meeting them in heaven someday. Bev is still loving women by running Living Alternatives.
During that time I saw pictures of the small humans that had burns all over their tiny bodies because of saline injection abortions. I saw pictures of tiny legs ripped from a tiny torsos by forceps during an abortion. Abortion was becoming real to me. Here are some similar images.
The reality of abortion is extreme cruelty to the most vulnerable humans among us, not the “evacuation of fetal tissue.”
We also had another teacher who started a pro-life group. He explained how abortion was the same to God as the sacrificing of children to idols in the Bible. Some ancient cultures had this practice. Israel had a period of leaving the LORD and worshiping the idol Molech, and/or Baal who required that children be burned in fire to appease his wrath.
“They have filled this place with the blood of the innocent. They have built high places to Baal on which to burn their children in the fire as offerings to Baal— something I never commanded or mentioned, nor did it even enter My mind. So behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when this place will no longer be called Topheth or the Valley of Ben-hinnom, but the Valley of Slaughter.…”
In America today we are too educated and sophisticated for idols made of metal or stone. Now our idols are called Selfishness, Convenience, Greed, and Fear and THOUSANDS of babies a day are being sacrificed to these idols.
This teacher also explained to us the procedure called “Partial Birth Abortion” which was legal in some states.
“Partial-Birth Abortion (Brain Suction) – 4 to 9 months of pregnancy
Guided by ultrasound, the abortionist grabs the baby’s leg with forceps. The baby’s leg is pulled out into the birth canal. The abortionist delivers the baby’s entire body, except for the head. The abortionist jams scissors into the baby’s skull. The scissors are then opened to enlarge the hole. The scissors are removed and a suction catheter is inserted. The child’s brains are sucked out, causing the skull to collapse. The dead baby is then removed.”
In the girls dorm at YWAM there were no TVs, computers, or phones. So I picked up a huge book about the origins of Planned Parenthood and read the entire thing (I think it was 400 pages long!) I learned that the founder, Margaret Sanger, despised both blacks and Christians. She lived a very promiscuous lifestyle. She felt that abortion was the answer to society’s woes: to set women free from traditional morals and of course those burdensome babies. She also said that abortion would be very useful in controlling the populations of the pesky lower forms of humans, mainly the Negros. As she began to market her idea, she used the slogan, “Every child a wanted child” and promised that a utopian society would surely follow.
As we can all see now, Margaret Sanger was a very false prophet.
Planned Parenthood started entering the schools and providing “sex education” which was supposed to help prevent unwanted pregnancies. Teenage pregnancies began to skyrocket, and it turned out the “sex ed” was actually creating more clients for her abortion clinics.
I knew a woman who had an abortion when she was young. It left emotional and physical scars so that later when she got married, she could not get pregnant. After much struggle and help from health care professionals, she was able to bring one miracle son into the world. She developed an abstinence based sex-ed course. She was invited into many schools.
I also learned from that book that 80% of women who had an abortion reported negative side effects, many long term.
It was becoming clear to me that abortion was devastating to the mother as well.
I have since learned that women who lose their baby before 20 weeks, whether through miscarriage or abortion, have a much higher risk of breast cancer and that risk goes up with each baby that is lost. On the flip side, for every month a women nurses a baby, her risk for breast cancer goes down. I have virtually no breast cancer risk after nursing my 10 babies. What does this tell me? God created our bodies to work a certain way and when we violate His design, there are negative consequences.
There are so many documented complications following abortion from increases in many kinds of cancer, poor general health, problems with future pregnancies, and on and on. The most concerning is the death rate in the year after abortion.
“According to the best record based study of deaths following pregnancy and abortion, a 1997 government funded study in Finland, women who abort are approximately four times more likely to die in the following year than women who carry their pregnancies to term. In addition, women who carry to term are only half as likely to die as women who were not pregnant”
What do you know? Pregnancy is actually good for women because God’s creation is good and He loves women. Pregnancy taken to the birth of a full term baby can actually protect a woman from DYING!
A year after YWAM, Chris and I got married and started having babies. We were learning first hand how our babies were being fearfully and wonderfully made by God who was knitting them together in my womb and bringing them through astonishing developments week by week. This was not a clump of cell. This was a miracle!
In quick succession I had a girl and two baby boys. My fourth pregnancy produced a beautiful baby girl, Ashlyn, who was diagnoses with a rare chromosomal disorder. Soon we realized that she was developmentally delayed and had unexpected abnormalities in her body. Yet she is such a vital part of our family. Most children like her never make it out of the womb alive. 80% of Down syndrome Babies are aborted in America. In some countries it is close to 100%.
I met a friend a few years later who took a special interest in Ashlyn. She even organized a fundraiser to help get Ashlyn the special therapy she needed. One day she told me her story. She was close to her due date with baby number 3 when the doctors realized that her child had some sort of problem, likely chromosomal in nature. They urged her to abort. Abortions in the third trimester were not legal in our state, so she and her husband traveled to another state. The abortion was preformed and she got a picture of her dead daughter. She and her husband had since divorced. Her older daughter was practicing self -harm.
I listened to my sweet friend and I heard a torture that I have never experienced in all the hardship of caring for a child who is physically and mentally handicapped. I wouldn’t wish that type of pain on anyone.
In the last year I have watched the movie, “Unplanned”, story of Abby Johnson who went from Planned Parenthood’s Employee of the year to a Pro-Life advocate. Please read her book or watch her movie. It explains so much about what it is like inside the abortion industry and what it is like to have an abortion. The turning point for Abby was when she was called in to assist with an abortion for the first time. It was her job to hold the ultrasound probe so the doctor could see the baby in order to suction it out.
When the suction tube came near the small baby, Abby saw it recoil and move out of the way. It tried to find a safe place but the little body could not escape.
“Beam me up Scotty,” said the doctor as the baby was ripped from the womb and ended up in a bloody heap in the machine.
Just a few weeks ago I was able to attend a Kick Off Rally for our local chapter of 40 Days of Life, the Pro-Life organization that helped Abby get out of the abortion industry. I met many precious Catholics who have been standing and praying in front of our city’s Planned Parenthood since 2006. They have pictures and stories of the babies and mothers they have saved from abortion. I was able to tour Little Bee, a mobile ultrasound unit by Undefeated Courage. They park in front of Planned Parenthoods in the area and offer free ultrasounds for pregnant women. Planned Parenthood always does an ultrasound for any client wanting an abortion, but only to determine price. The client is never allowed to see her baby moving on the screen, never allowed to notice the beating heart.
Four out of five women who receive an ultrasound on a mobile unit decide to keep her baby. She can plainly see that what is in her womb is a human child, HER human child.
I also learned about Rachel’s Vineyard, a local ministry that helps women heal from abortion. Their pamphlet reads, “One in Four Women will become a victim of abortion by the age of 45.”
Interesting, I had never thought of it that way. But now I understand why the woman is a victim too. She is being lied to by her culture, celebrities, media, lawmakers, educators, and her health care providers. Most of all she is being lied to by Planned Parenthood counselors who are trained to sell a product. They only product they have to sell is abortion. The pain, grief, guilt, and negative side effects are downplayed or never mentioned. Her baby is referred to as “the pregnancy”, “contents of the uterus”, or “fetal tissue.” She is never told that her baby is a real human baby, a life worth living, and a life worth saving.
She is never told that when God gives a woman a baby, it is His way of showing His favor and giving her His highest blessing. She is never told that babies are always a blessing and never a curse, that the child in her womb may become the best thing in her life.
I love to talk about pregnancy, labor, birth, and everything to do with babies and motherhood. It is my great passion in life! Women sense this and seem to open up to me. I have heard so many stories over the years! Many times I have heard a woman say,