Monthly Archives: August 2014

Facts lie

I was speaking at a local church one Sunday morning, so I asked my assistant
Sarah sarah-vaughn to meet me and help work the SaveOne table after the services. As I pulled into the parking lot, she yelled at me from down the row of empty handicapped spaces. She had parked at the end of the row in the first regular spot not reserved for the handicapped.

As I stood at the front door and waited on her, she slowly made her way down the long sidewalk. An onslaught of thoughts came to my mind as I watched this beautiful girl walk toward me. Sarah was born 22 years earlier with Cerebral Palsy. When I first met her as a teenager, she was unable to walk unassisted. She had crutches that were never far from her hands. As a baby the doctors labeled her as handicapped. There was no denying the fact Sarah had CP…but handicapped?

Months earlier I had sat in the audience and cheered as I watched her walk across the stage unassisted to receive her college diploma. I knew then the word “handicapped” had never defined Sarah. The long embrace she received from her professor let me know the professor knew, just as the audience did, this girl is not handicapped. I thought about all the excuses I had given myself for not going on to get my Master’s degree. The next week I enrolled and now I am six months in to graduate school. Sarah motivated me to overcome what I believed as fact and realize that fact was lying and keeping me from furthering my much needed education.

Sarah works full-time for Mercy Ministries since she graduated college, she loves the Lord with all her heart, she volunteers her time for SaveOne just because she believes in our cause, she sponsors an orphan in Haiti, she drove herself in her own car that morning refusing to park in the handicapped spaces, and she ran my table like a boss that Sunday. What sets her apart is that she didn’t allow her challenges to define her life. She realized facts lie and this was a fact that was lying.

Watching this young girl has made me question the facts in my own life. Where and what am I accepting as truth just because I was stamped with a label early on. What do I see in others lives that I am accepting as fact in my own? What “facts” have gone unchallenged around me just because science says so, or the status quo has allowed them to remain? We should dig and find these areas in our lives and root them out. These so called “facts” could be exactly what is holding us back from our God-given destiny.

Sarah is actually in the company of some pretty cool people. It was a fact all Hebrew male babies were to be killed, but Moses mother didn’t believe it. It was a fact anyone who approached the King would be put to death, But Esther didn’t believe it. It was a fact Saul imprisoned and killed any Christians he could find, but Ananias didn’t believe it. It was a fact the prodigal was lost to the world, but his dad didn’t believe it. It was a fact David and his army were on their way to destroy Nabal and his land, but Abigail didn’t believe it. It was a fact the army couldn’t defeat Goliath, but David didn’t believe it. It was a fact Lazarus was dead, but Jesus didn’t believe it.

Have I made my point? Start today to challenge these “facts” that hold you back, release your faith in Him and see God open the doors of heaven to your actions and your faith just like He did for Moses, Esther, Ananias, and my dear friend Sarah! These people would not, could not, live in defeat accepting labels and laws as truth. They stepped out in faith and knew the God of heaven’s armies had their back!

Big Shoes to Fill

The text I received went something like this, “Hey I’m cleaning out my mom’s shoe closet and I was wondering if you knew of any ladies who might wear a 9 or 9 ½.” What I heard was, “Is there a lady you know who could possibly have a foot this large?” I contemplated for a moment wondering, “Do I tell her I wear that size? Will she think of me as freakishly huge? I’m 5’10” for heaven’s sake a size 6 would look strange on me. But still it’s never fun to whisper in the middle of Macy’s—could I just try a 10 in this boot? These must run small.” But my mind goes back to the text, there might possibly be really cute shoes at stake here. So I swallow my pride and reply, “YES! I wear that size.”

As I drove to her house later that day, I began to contemplate these shoes. You see, these were not just anybody’s shoes. They belonged to a woman who in 1958 boarded a cargo ship (A CARGO SHIP!!!) with her husband, said good-bye to her family, her home, and her life, and devoted the next forty years to loving, reaching, teaching, and mentoring the wonderful people of Africa. She sometimes lived in conditions too painful for us to imagine. She was pressured to put her children in boarding school hundreds of miles away. She lived a selfless life, totally and completely counter-cultural to what women are taught today. She did it all because God asked her to and she was obedient. She chose things like staying in her marriage and not ever considering divorce an option even when things got hard, and all marriages at one time or another get hard. She chose things like sacrificial service instead of promoting herself. Today she is reaping the benefits of her Godly choices.

At 87 years old, her body is reacting naturally to nearly nine decades on this earth, but her mind is intact, her marriage is happy and intact, she has a beautiful home, two children who adore her, love her, and both serve the Lord, and an army of people who seek her out for wisdom, great stories, and genuine love. Her obedience, although hard at times, has brought great blessing into her life. Her selfless love has transformed countless individuals and families not only here in America, but in Africa too through a ripple effect still going on as I write.

As I had these thoughts on the way to my friend’s house, I was getting the privilege of filling these very large shoes both figuratively and literally! To be honest I didn’t have my hopes up really high that I would walk away with any chic or trendy styles. But when I saw the Steve Madden and Sam & Libby labels I knew I had hit the jackpot, so I took four pair of the coolest shoes from this 87-year-old shoe connoisseur.

When I got home I pulled the shoes out and have them sitting in my closet. I have yet to put them on, as I feel a certain gravity about them. Call me dramatic or say I’m over-thinking but when I look at these shoes I can’t help but hope that I too can live selflessly. I pray that I may walk out my days in service to others, that I may see my boys love and serve the Lord deep into an old age. That my marriage will remain blessed and intact because of Godly choices I make, and that I may never hesitate to be obedient even when obedience is hard. This is a prayer I pray for all of us. May we strive to fill the shoes of the giants of faith who have walked before us and may we forever endeavor to fill the shoes of greatness like my 87-yr-old shoe fashionista friend, Dot Webb.

You can get the full story of Dot’s memoirs by going to Amazon.com and typing in, “A Harvest of Joy” authored by her daughter, Tammy Webb-Witholt. You will be glad you got this book and learned from this incredible woman!

LOCKING ARMS

As we move toward the fall, I know many of our chapters (churches and pregnancy centers) will be starting new SaveOne classes. This thrills us and we are so thankful for your continued participation in abortion recovery. We know this is the greatest way to save babies, transform lives, restore marriages, break the bondage of substance abuse, end pornography addictions, and deal with anger issues. Furthermore, the lives that were wrecked by the sin of abortion are put on the path back to Jesus. Holding a SaveOne class, even after 14 years, never gets old. Seeing these transformations take place right before my eyes is nothing less than a miracle. So thank you for those who are starting their fall classes!

If you are reading this and you have had an abortion or know someone who has (man or woman), and you have never been through a SaveOne class, I urge you to not postpone this commitment. Join a local chapter today! If there is not one near you, we can hook you up with a SaveOne staff member who can travel this journey with you online. Don’t wait¬−I promise facing this is worth the tears and hard spots you will go through.

Also, have you checked out our store recently? Go to www.saveone.org and click on “store”. Our books are available there, PLUS we have a few additions that we are most proud of. The first one is my latest book entitled, “Is There Not a Cause?” You will want to read one, and also get a copy for your pastor. The second one is our new custom SaveOne bracelets. If you have lost a child to abortion or miscarriage, these bracelets are a beautiful reminder of your child(ren) in heaven. You can get pink or blue beads for the gender of your child. Mine means a lot to me as I wear it, for I remember my daughter, Megan. Plus, when you purchase our products, you help us reach more people! Thank you in advance.

Please say hello to our newest chapters…

*Pulaski, TN

*Pulaski, TN (yes we have 2 new chapters in this town!)

*Kircham, Austria

*Ashland City, TN

*Murfreesboro, TN

*Davenport, IA

*Berkeley, CA

*White Pigeon, MI

We are thrilled when a church or pregnancy center comes alongside us and locks arms in this battle against abortion that we face. We love seeing churches become a healing place for those in their community (1 out of every 3 women and 1 out of every 3 men) who have suffered the aftermath of abortion.

Please feel free to contact our office with any questions or comments. We like hearing from you. And please feel free to share these blog posts and sign up to follow this blog. You help us greatly by being interested in what we’re doing!

Blessings,
Sheila