Life Centers Blog
There are some things that just aren’t easy to talk about. Having an abortion, I’d imagine, is probably pretty high on the list.
Yet like many things, talking about it and working through the pain or confusion an abortion leaves behind is a way to begin the healing process.
This was the case for Sammy.*
After a pregnancy test confirmed she was pregnant, she sat down to talk with one of our peer counselors.
During their discussion, Sammy shared how she was very broken hearted over a previous abortion. As she relived her abortion, recalling the details and the decision to abort her baby, she cried quite a bit. It was very obvious that her abortion is something she still struggles with.
Sammy opened up about her abortion with one of our peer counselors, who she has never met, but felt comfortable enough to do so as she indicated on her exit survey.
What was most helpful about your visit today?
“I felt comfortable talking about deep seeded issues that I never share with people. I received plenty of information that will help me in the future.”
“This was the best center I could have ever found on a random online search to get answers. Very helpful and kind. I got the information needed to direct me in the right direction. Hoping to have a healthy pregnancy and baby to take home this time.”
Suffering in silence about an abortion can be unbearable, but many people are.
This is a huge reason Life Centers exists; to offer support and comfort to those who feel alone.
Soar (spiritually oriented abortion recovery) is a post-abortion recovery support group for both men and women impacted by the loss of a child to abortion. Life Centers leads participants on a confidential journey of recovery in an intimate support group with others who are moving toward freedom and healing.
For more information about soar please contact Machelle Montgomery at (317) 923-9030 or email@example.com and visit our webpage at https://lifecenters.com/learn-more/services/post-abortion/.
*Name has been changed.
The passion for serving the unborn continues to be passed down to the next generation. It’s amazing that a child as young as 10-years-old can understand that all lives have value; one life is not more important than another or is more deserving to live, and protecting and speaking up for the unborn is necessary and should be done.
In the Bible, we see that God died for all human beings, saving all souls, because to God all human lives have equal value. “For God does not show favoritism” (Romans 2:11).
One 10-year-old who knows God’s word to be true is Annalise.
At her school, the students were challenged to bring their own lunches with the incentive that they would be given fifty cents per lunch to be given to the charity of their choice.
Annalise was inspired immediately, and knew she wanted to raise money for Life Centers to help save babies. She set her goal to raise at least $50 and got to work.
In the end, Annalise exceeded her goal, raising $64 and donated all of it to Life Centers. That money is enough to cover the cost of a Baby Bundle! This 10-year-old girl was able to make an impact in a baby’s life who she will probably never meet. But the important thing to Annalise is saving any and all lives, because she knows all human life has equal worth and IS valuable, just as God has said.
A “failed abortion.” That is what a client said she thought happened to her.
Several months ago, Clarissa* took a pregnancy test at home and it was positive. Her husband, Sam*, was adamant about not having any more kids. They had one son together. He told Clarissa he wanted her to have an abortion. Listening to her husband, she went to a clinic and was given the abortion pill. She took one pill at the center, and took a second pill the next day at home. Clarissa experienced some light bleeding and cramping, but said the experience, “wasn’t bad.”
Six weeks went by. Clarissa, Sam, and their 6-year-old son moved to the Indianapolis area from out of state. They both started new jobs and became very busy with their new life when Clarissa realized she never had a period after taking the abortion pills. She took another home pregnancy test- and it was positive. That’s when she came to Life Centers.
Clarissa and Amanda*, the Center Director, had a very in depth conversation which ended in prayer and tears. Amanda told her she needed to find an OB-GYN to determine how far along she was. When Clarissa left the center that day, Amanda had no idea what her choice would be. Would she keep the baby she tried to abort once already, or ultimately choose abortion?
Amanda followed up with Clarissa a few times and invited her back to the center for a Baby Bundle if she was parenting. To Amanda’s surprise, Clarissa came back to the center just a few weeks ago! She came in with her 6-year-old son and they shared they would be welcoming a baby girl to the family in March. The little boy beamed, and said he had “been praying for a little sister for a very long time.”
They brought Amanda a card and flowers. In the card Clarissa wrote, “Thank you is simply not enough to express my thanks. Your kindness brought me hope when I was in a very dark place. I will never forget the prayers you said for me and my family the day I showed up at your center. Those prayers have come to fruition. I would still love to go to church with you and feel utterly blessed our paths crossed.”
Clarissa’s husband, Sam, had a complete heart change and is eagerly anticipating the birth of his daughter. It turns out Clarissa’s “failed abortion” was actually the answer to a little boys’ prayer for a baby sister.
If you or someone you know is struggling with a pregnancy related decision, visit one of our centers for free services, accurate information and education, and a nonjudgmental ear to listen to your story.
*Names have been changed.
In the final days of our Sanctity of Human Life campaign with Moody Radio, we were live on their morning show today from 6:00am until 9:00am. Listeners were encouraged to call in to make a donation, as we had volunteers and staff members standing by to take their phone call and enter their gift. Executive Director Tom Shevlot, staff members, and volunteers all shared the importance of Baby Bundles and ultrasounds to our ministry. These are two tools we provide at no cost to our clients to encourage them to choose life. For Life Centers, it costs $60 to assemble a Baby Bundle, and $100 to cover the cost of one ultrasound exam.
There were many people who called in to donate this morning with their own story of either abortion or adoption. This prompted them to want to give money to go toward an ultrasound exam or a Baby Bundle (or both) in hopes of changing someone’s life for the better.
One caller in particular really stood out. Melissa* called in to donate $600 as a birthday gift to herself! She explained that 60 years ago, her grandmother made an appointment for her mother to have an abortion. Melissa was the baby who was to be aborted. Her mother chose not to go to the appointment solely out of defiance toward her grandmother. There wasn’t any other reasoning or motive behind not going to the appointment; she simply wanted to do the opposite of what her mother had wanted her to do and as a result, she had the baby. When Melissa was only 2 months old, her mother realized how difficult it was to care for a new baby and decided she couldn’t do it.
Melissa’s grandmother, who scheduled the appointment for her granddaughter to be aborted, ended up being the woman who raised her.
Growing up, Melissa accepted the belief that many abortion agencies teach: that every baby should be a wanted baby or they should be aborted. Throughout her college years, she supported abortion agencies and donated to them. As Melissa grew older, her beliefs changed. She now realizes the value of life and is a supporter of Life Centers. Melissa donated to Life Centers today to celebrate her own life, and her gift will be used to bring more lives into the world so they can celebrate their birthdays, too.
If you would like to donate to the Life Centers and Moody Radio Sanctity of Human Life campaign, visit https://lifecenters.com/sanctity-of-human-life/. You can designate your donation to go toward a Baby Bundle or an ultrasound exam.
*Name has been changed.
In December, our centers provide Christmas gifts to those clients who need help giving their children presents. Our volunteers graciously “adopt” families and buy the kids Christmas gifts.
The week before Christmas, Jamie*, a Center Director, called Taylor*, one of her clients, to tell her she could come pick up the wrapped gifts she had for her children. Taylor, the mom of four kids, was excited to come pick up the gifts and told Jamie she would be there by the end of the day.
Taylor walked into the center later that day with her two oldest boys, ages 6 and 9, trailing behind her. When they were all gathered together in the counseling room, Jamie shared with Taylor that the Lord has provided for her and her precious children and that he will continue to provide.
They were politely gathering their gifts wrapped neatly in red and green wrapping paper, when Jamie thought about the “sock tub” they had in their support services room. The sock tub is exactly that; A plastic tub holding various sizes of socks for kids. Jamie started collecting socks for the boys to take home.
You might think, “Socks, for a Christmas gift? Do kids really want socks?”
When she brought the socks back to the counseling room, Taylor saw the them and to Jamie’s surprise, immediately told her two boys to put them on.
When they sat down and began to roll up their pant legs, Jamie noticed neither of the boys had socks on. (Keep in mind, its December and very cold outside.) As the older boy struggled putting a size 5 sock on his size 10 foot, Jamie went back to the tub and luckily found a large pair of socks at the very bottom of the tub. The 9-year-old boy smiled when he took the socks from her and put them on his feet. It was obvious the boys were so grateful for a simple pair of socks, because they had none or very few pairs.
When the three of them left that afternoon, I can’t help but think those two little boys were just as excited about getting socks as they were about getting neatly wrapped packages in red and green wrapping paper.
*Names have been changed.
Are you interested in donating baby or kids clothing? We could always use support service items! For a list of our urgent needs, visit https://lifecenters.com/give/items/.
Life Centers is very fortunate to have many men and women who give their time, money, and unwavering support to our ministry. We wouldn’t exist as a resource to moms, dads, and babies who come to us for guidance, information, and support services without them. Being an organization that primarily provides to women, it isn’t often that men donate their time to support us. That isn’t the case for Dana Andrews.
Dana was sitting in church one morning when he saw in the bulletin that Life Centers had a need for baby clothing and other baby-related items. This spoke to him because he had wanted to do more than sit in church for one hour a week and put money in the offering plate. Dana longed to do more for the Christian community, and helping Life Centers was something he knew he could do.
Already an avid “garage-saler,” Dana knew that’s where he would start. He goes to several yard and garage sales in the summer and fall months collecting baby clothes and items. Often times, he purchases an entire table of baby and toddler clothes at a garage sale. When the seller finds out Dana is buying these items to donate to Life Centers, they sometimes give him a discount and donate more items, such as baby blankets.
As his service to Life Centers continued over the last four and a half years, Dana has picked up on which stores have the best deals to really stretch his dollar. “Big Lots has the best deal on baby wipes, and on the first Saturday of every month Goodwill has everything 50% off,” Dana explains. Having no children of his own, he has also learned a thing or two about baby clothes. “When I dropped off clothes to one of the centers, I asked if there was anything in particular they were in need of that maybe I hadn’t brought. The center director told me they were really in need of “onesies” for newborn babies. I had no idea what a “onesie” was, so she had to explain it to me. We both got a laugh out of that.”
Countless babies have been impacted by Dana’s service to Life Centers. He doesn’t do it for recognition or praise, he simply states, “I get a great deal of satisfaction from it. I really enjoy being able to help in a way I know I can.”
Dana is retiring from his full-time job soon, and will have to scale back his involvement with Life Centers to some degree. His hope is that someone else will be inspired by his story and pick up where he will soon leave off. “You just have to want to help,” says Dana.
Our tagline, “Choose Compassion” is so much more than a tagline. It is something we set out to do every single day for every single person that walks through our doors. We want people to want to come back again and again. We want them to feel comfortable talking to us, knowing we will be unbiased listeners, not placing judgment. So many people just need someone to listen, show genuine concern, and offer support and solutions.
At times, the stories we hear can be difficult and full of sorrow. Many times, it’s hard to know the right thing to say, but if we lean on the Lord and rely on Him to speak through us, often times the right words come pouring out; words offering hope.
Recently, a young lady and her boyfriend visited one of our centers. Jessica* had been seen twice this year by Karen* who happened to be working when the couple came in. Karen took her back to a counseling room and determined she was there for a pregnancy test. The test was negative.
But a pregnancy test wasn’t the only thing Jessica came in for that day. Tearfully, she said to Karen, “I came here for you to pray with me.” Somewhat shocked, as that isn’t something we hear very often, Karen asked Jessica if this was something her boyfriend should be a part of, or if she would like to be prayed for alone. Stating her boyfriend should be involved, Matt* came back to the counseling room.
When Karen asked the couple what they needed prayer for, Jessica replied, “Our life together and for our relationship.” The couple was holding hands, crying as Karen prayed for them. Karen encouraged them to move toward God and to put Him first in their relationship, forsaking all things that are interfering with a relationship with their Lord and Savior.
When their time together came to a close, they left the counseling room and Karen led them down the hallway toward the lobby. While they were walking, Karen heard Matt say to Jessica, “I feel so much better.”
God is moving in this young couple’s lives. They sought prayer and guidance and knew where to go.
This is such a powerful example of what Life Centers is. A place of compassion, hope, and support.
Are you looking for a way to show support and offer hope to members of your community? If you are interested in volunteering at one of our centers, please email Tammy Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Names have been changed
A large part of our ministry is throwing baby showers. This might surprise you, but some of the women who come to our centers do not have family support for their new babies. Sometimes, the family is not excited about the pregnancy, the significant other is not supportive of the mom’s choice to keep the baby, or the new mom simply doesn’t have anyone to host a baby shower for her.
That’s where we come in!
We want to show encouragement to the young woman who just found out she was pregnant. Baby showers can supply moms-to-be with the basic items they need to care for their little one. Something as simple as a baby shower can give a new mom confidence to properly care for her child.
Avrie came to Life Centers looking for support and information. She is excited to meet her son, Alexander, very soon, and says she will be bringing him into the center to meet everyone!
Recently, Burge Terrace Baptist Church hosted a baby shower for Austin, Avrie, and baby Alexander. More than fifty men, women, and children were in attendance to show love to this couple and their baby. Baby Alexander will be well supplied for his first year because of the outpouring support shown to Avrie and Austin.
If you are interested in hosting a baby shower email, email@example.com. The pregnancy center in your area will connect you with a client in need, and you can host the event at your church or local pregnancy center.
The following is a real text message that was sent to a volunteer at one of our centers from a client. This client had been dealing with the pain of abortion and was introduced to our post-abortion recovery program, SOAR, spiritually oriented abortion recovery. It is completely humbling.
I’m thinking of how I will never find the words to be able to tell you how truly thankful I am for you. God’s love shines so brightly through you and it cut through the darkest places of my mind and heart. Places so dark, I didn’t even know they were there. And I didn’t even know how sad I was until that sadness was stripped away, little by little, all because you cared enough to introduce me to SOAR. And you cared enough to love me through the worst, ugliest, messiest moments of my life. And love like that can only come from Jesus. It has shown me how I’m supposed to love others.
Thank you for letting His love break through the walls that I had built around my heart. Thank you for the ability to laugh so hard I cry. Thank you for letting me be unapologetically myself. And for proving time and time again that you will always be there. I think of all of this every time I put a little more effort in to each day. It sounds so dumb, but I shower more. I pluck my eyebrows. I brush my teeth every day. I started flossing. All of this is so normal to most people, but I had stopped caring. And now I care again. I feel like there is a fire inside of me where there was once only ashes. I want to do better and be better, and live a life that shines for God like yours does. Thank you for being you. I truly mean that.”
For more information on SOAR, visit https://lifecenters.com/learn-more/services/post-abortion/.
Especially when you’re expected to put 100% firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone else and you’re an independent person. It doesn’t come naturally to many of us. We like to control everything. Too often we’d rather take matters into our own hands, handle it ourselves, and take all responsibility rather than let someone else have the opportunity to mess things up. Sometimes, and I mean sometimes, it’s okay to do those things if we need to and we are able.
But we can’t do it all. We just can’t. For some, that’s hard to accept, but we have Jesus for that. Aren’t we supposed to trust Him with our whole hearts? Yet, it’s still so hard to “let go and let God” at times. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
Sounds easy enough, but so many of us (myself included) struggle with turning things over to God. He is the one we should trust more than anyone in the world. After all, no one loves us more. He tells us He will take care of us, He will make our paths straight. It is His word. We have to have faith, because faith IS trusting in God.
We were reminded of this trust when a client came to one of our centers recently to take a pregnancy test.
She had circled “undecided” on her paperwork under the statement, “If my pregnancy test is positive, I am considering: (circle one).” When she went back to the counseling room with a volunteer, she began to open up and talk to the volunteer about her life and the situation she might be in.
This young girl is a Christian with a lot of family support. In the fall, she has plans to attend college. This client recently broke up with her boyfriend of six years, who she thought she was going to marry. After the break up, she visited an old friend and they had unprotected sex.
The counseling segment had come to a close and it was time to take a pregnancy test. As they stood in the bathroom waiting for the test to be complete, two faint pink lines appeared. The client confirmed the test read positive, and panic started taking over. She had gotten pregnant while visiting her friend.
Back in the counseling room, it was obvious to the volunteer this client was upset and in shock. The girl indicated she might want to have an abortion, so the volunteer asked if she could share her own personal story of abortion with her. When she agreed, the volunteer told the young client, “After years of asking myself why I made that decision twice, I found the reason was actually quite simple. I refused to trust God. Because I couldn’t see how things would work out, I took things into my own hands.” The volunteer then explained that God is a big God, and He will make a way for us when we can’t see one for ourselves. The volunteer then shared with the client, “We don’t know how many children God will bless us with. After I had two abortions, I never had any children.”
Something resonated with that young girl. Tears streamed down her face sympathizing with the volunteer. As they prayed together, the client wept, so much so, the top of her shirt was wet from tears. When she left the center that day, her mind was made up. She circled “parenting” on her exit paperwork.
It’s so easy for us to focus on the “now” when we are in unforeseen situations, but God is thinking ahead. God wants us to have a full and abundant life, He only asks that we believe in Him and trust Him.
“Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal.” Isaiah 26:4