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NOTE: Commentary is made as a private citizen and not as Regional Coordinator for Silent No More or Leader of Rachel's Hope, unless otherwise stated.

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Thursday, September 28, 2017

"MENTORING FOR ALL SEASONS" - AN INTRODUCTION TO AN INCREDIBLE BOOK

Janet Thompson takes the mystery out of mentoring in her new book Mentoring For All Seasons. I was honored to be part of this inspirational project as I discuss after-abortion healing as a recipient and provider.

Enjoy this special introduction from Janet…

I grew up in Southern California where, with few seasonal exceptions, the weather was consistent year round—sunny and beautiful. Sunny and hot with morning fog near the beach in summer. Sunny and warm with occasional Santana winds in the fall. Sunny with a few storms, rain, and overcast days in the winter, when the temperatures might dip into the 60’s. Sunny and colorful in the spring. Those were our seasons.

Then we moved to Idaho where we have four extremely distinct and different seasons, each one lasting about three months, except last winter’s snow went from November until a few snow days in April! The biggest difference I’ve noticed about the four climate “seasons,” is that the year seems to fly by in Idaho!

During that heavy snow winter, everyone could hardly wait until it was summer. Then when summer brought high temperatures and smoke from forest fires, everyone could hardly wait for fall. Now that fall has finally arrived, in just a few months we’ll be right back into winter snow again.




We’re continually coming out of one season and going into the next completely different season—a great metaphor for our life seasons. Many of you have experienced the blessing of having a mentor in the changing seasons of your life, or long for a mentor to help you through a new life season. That’s when those with experience in a life season can reach out and offer counsel, support, prayer, and God’s wisdom to a woman in a season we’ve experienced. Mentoring is that easy.

When we moved to Idaho from Southern California, we had never lived in the rural mountains year round. We had a lot to learn and there was always someone willing to mentor us; all we had to do was ask and be receptive to what they had learned from living here. Now that we’re a bit “seasoned,” we can help others moving here too.

One group of friends call themselves “Seasoned Veterans of the Word,” and they’re anxious to learn more about mentoring. Author and speaker Pam Farrel has several stories in this book where she tells of forming a group of “Seasoned Sisters” to prepare for menopause and midlife together, a season I’ve definitely included in Mentoring for All Seasons.

So that’s my challenge, let’s look for those God puts in our path and share what we’ve learned from our experiences and how God and His Word helped us and will help them too in whatever life season they’re going through now. And if you’re going through a difficult life season or are new in your faith, ask God to help you find a mentor. Mentoring for All Seasons encourages women to intentionally share their life experiences and God’s faithfulness. I’m not just talking about women; we need to mentor our tweens and teens too!

You may encounter a woman in a season you haven’t experienced. Mentees come from all walks and seasons of life, ages, and spiritual maturity. Even if a mentor doesn’t share the exact life experience of her mentee, the mentor can provide spiritual guidance, do research, and pray about how to address the specific issues her mentee is encountering. Some mentees might even be seekers or brand new believers who need to know how to live as Christian women today.
In Mentoring for All Seasons, sixty-five women share their mentor or mentee testimonies, along with my own personal experiences, helpful tips, and suggestions will guide women in how to connect and nurture each other through mentoring relationships, as a mentor or a mentee from tweens to twilight years. There are Scriptures for each season to help guide the discussion to God’s Word. Mentors don’t have all the answers, but God does!

Mentoring for all Seasons is a reference, application, and coaching tool for a mentor or mentee as they traverse life’s journey together. I pray for Holy Spirit inspiration for some women to become Titus 2:3-5 women.
"Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.”
Throughout our lifetime, we vacillate between being a mentor and needing a mentor, depending on the season of life. I pray whatever season you’re in today, there’s someone walking beside you, and you’re walking beside someone who needs you in her season of life.

Bio: Janet Thompson is an international speaker, freelance editor, and award-winning author of nineteen books including her latest, Mentoring for All Seasons: Sharing Life Experiences and God’s Faithfulness.
She is also the founder of Woman to Woman Mentoring and About His Work Ministries. Janet and her husband Dave relocated their empty nest from Orange County, California to the rural mountains of Idaho, where Janet writes and they love watching the deer frolic in their yard.
Sign up for Janet’s Monday Morning Blog and online newsletter at womantowomanmentoring.com.
You can also visit Janet at:
www.facebook.com/Janetthompson.authorspeaker
http://www.linkedin.com/in/womantowomanmentoring/
www.pinterest.com/thompsonjanet
https://twitter.com/AHWministries

Monday, September 25, 2017

The Secret



Today’s Gospel reading struck me like lightening. 

“For there is nothing hidden that

will not become visible, and nothing

secret that will not be known

 and come to light.”  

Luke 8:17

It reminded me of a term frequently used in Alcoholics Anonymous:  “You are only as sick as your secrets.”  

Many women and men carry their abortion experience in the dark recesses of their soul.  They do everything in their power to shroud the secret from others and the guilt, shame, and remorse associated with abortion from themselves. Sadly, the means used to avoid detection are more disastrous than exposure:  self-destructive behavior such as substance abuse, eating disorders, promiscuity, being in abusive relationships, gambling, over-protectiveness of living children or the opposite, etc.    

I visualize the tools (coping skills) used to conceal the secret as volcanic magma.  As time passes, weaknesses in the earth’s crust can no longer hold back the magma, and a catastrophic eruption occurs. As one tool stops working, the world crumbles and ushers in hopelessness, fear, and depression resulting in the use of another, which starts the vicious cycle all over again.  

The only way to stop the debilitating aftermath of abortion is to summon the courage to reach out for healing.  Removing the shroud of secrecy will allow the light of love and forgiveness from our merciful God and Savior, thus replacing the guilt, shame, and remorse with peace and serenity.  

Take it from one who knows....

For healing resources visit:

www.rachelshopehealingministry.com (San Diego)
www.rachelsvineyard.org (International)
www.silentnomore.com (International)

Friday, September 8, 2017

Martha Plimpton: Praising Abortion - Or Not?




Actress Martha Plimpton made headlines recently by announcing she had her best abortion in Seattle, which isn't surprising.  She has never been coy about that part of her personal life.  In 2015 she told ABC, “For me in particular because I did have two abortions as a young woman, I feel that my ability to access that kind of medical care made it possible for me to live out my dreams and do what I really want to do in life.”

My initial reactions were of disgust and anger that someone could be so nonchalant about ending the life a child.  But, truth be told, her words triggered a flashback that directed those feelings not towards her, but me.  Back in the 70’s I minimized the conduct of aborting twice by spewing pro-choice rhetoric and using my career goals as defense for my actions (coincidentally, both abortions were performed in Seattle).

It is very common for women to not just initially feel relief after ending an unplanned pregnancy, but also identify with and become involved in pro-choice organizations such as Planned Parenthood or the National Organization of Women.  They also immerse themselves in their careers.  Eventually, however, dysfunctional patterns of behavior surface. 

In my case not only was I a workaholic, but also an alcoholic.  Successfully climbing the ladder of success in a government career only temporarily validated the sacrifice of two babies and I was oblivious to the fact my drinking was escalating at the same time.  In actuality, I was numbing the pain and regret of aborting.  Eventually, alcohol dominated my life and affected my work performance, propelling me into a downward spiral that made suicide the only alternative to the overwhelming emotional pain.  Obviously, I survived – but only through rehab, therapy and healing from the psychological and spiritual damage unleashed due to my abortions.

Instead of being angry and disgusted towards Ms. Plimpton, I am empathetic and sympathetic.  She may be unaware or deny it all together, but her pro-choice activism and relentless pursuit of more roles on stage and screen are more than likely a smokescreen --- covering up the same pain and regret I carried for so many years.  I pray she and the countless others living in denial are able see through the smoke and reach out for healing at some point....not just to help themselves, but to stop the rhetoric that misleads vulnerable young women.