Tag Archive | forgiven

Forgiven and Set Free ~ The Video

A few weeks ago, my F&SF sisters and I got together for a Spring Brunch.  We were each asked if we wanted to participate in a promotional video for Forgiven and Set Free.  At the time, it was unsure as to where this video would end up and how it would be used, but many of us were happy to participate in hopes that it would get “out there” and heighten awareness.

This video is the first step in God using us to help others who have experienced abortion or are considering it as an option.  Please take 2 minutes and 50 seconds of your time to watch the video to completion.  Listen to the words of the song.  If it doesn’t touch you, I don’t know what will!

Hey Lucy, I remember your name…
I left a dozen roses on your grave today;
I’m in the grass on my knees, wipe the leaves away;
I just came to talk for a while,
I got some things, I need to say…

Now that it’s over,
I just wanna hold her,
I’d give up all the world to see,
That little piece of heaven looking back at me;
Now that it’s over,
I just wanna hold her;
I’ve gotta live with the choices I made,
And I can’t live with myself today…

Hey Lucy, I remembered your birthday…
They said it’d bring some closure to say your name;
I know I’d do it all different if I had the chance,
But all I got are these roses to give,
And they can’t help me make amends…

Now that it’s over,
I just wanna hold her,
I’d give up all the world to see,
That little piece of heaven looking back at me;
Now that it’s over,
I just wanna hold her;
I’ve gotta live with the choices I made,
And I can’t live with myself today.

Here we are,
Now you’re in my arms;
I never wanted anything so bad…
Here we are,
For a brand new start;
Living the life that we could’ve had…

Me and Lucy walking hand in hand,
Me and Lucy never wanna end!
Just another moment in your eyes,
I’ll see you in another life,
In heaven, where we never say goodbye!

Now that it’s over,
I just wanna hold her,
I’d give up all the world to see,
That little piece of heaven looking back at me;
Now that it’s over,
I just wanna hold her;
I’ve gotta live with the choices I made,
And I can’t live with myself today!

Here we are,
Now you’re in my arms;
Here we are,
For a brand new start;
Got to live with the choices I’ve made,
And I can’t live with myself today!

Me and Lucy walking hand in hand,
Me and Lucy never wanna end!
I got to live with the choices I’ve made,
And I can’t live with myself…
Today…

Hey Lucy, I remember your name…

Songwriter, John Cooper

Performed by:  Skillet

Thank you for looking.  Until next time, have a blessed day!

TTFN ~ Tamara Eckstadt

Still Forgiven & Set Free ~

 

It’s been 6 months since I “graduated” from Forgiven and Set Free last September, 9 months since I began attending one of the most important, life-changing ministries of my life.  If you haven’t read my Forgiven and Set Free  Post-Abortion Blog posts, this would be a great time to do so (there are four posts, start from the bottom).

Today, the ministry coordinator(s) organized a breakfast get-together for those of us who have completed the sessions.  Eleven of my F&SF sisters joined together at 9:00 this morning for worship, minstry, fellowship, food and fun. Some of these kindred spirits I know from church, some I met for the first time and it was like we’d known each other forever!  How can I begin to describe the warm intimacy we sisters share as we talk about our experiences and join in prayer for each other and anyone else who needs prayer? 

After two previous attempts at post-abortion counseling, both failed attempts ~ one with an educated pastor and one with a secular psychologist with a ph.d, I can be assured that Forgiven & Set Free is still “working” within me.  Still holding me close, still consoling me in the loss of my child, and still reassuring me that I will see him some day.  Indeed, I have grown in this knowledge of God’s eternal forgiveness and love.  I’m praying for a time when I can share my experience(s) and newly -found knowledge with another sister who may have gone through, or is going through what I went through.  I know He has a plan for me, and I hope it’s to help someone else.

Until He reveals His plan to me, I’m happy knowing I’ve got sisters who have been through what I have been through, understand my pain and my joy.  I can also revel in the anticipation of my little red oak tree sprouting leaves again soon with the Spring, and I’ll be able to watch it grow and think about meeting my son some day down the road when the time is right.

Until then, I’m going to “Be still…”  Psalm 46:10.Red Oak Tree planted for a child lost.

 

Until next time, TTFN ~ Tamara Eckstadt

  

Forgiven & Set Free: 1st Christmas ~

I’ve been giving a lot of thought as to “how far” I need to go in my post-abortion healing.  How long does one grieve?  How long before I’m healed?  Some people feel the need to “celebrate” yearly milestones, but I think for me, I’ve about reached the summit and am prepared to let it go and perhaps in the future “celebrate” and remember in my own personal way.

I have, however, recently purchased an ornament to put on our Christmas tree to commemorate the very first Christmas that I feel allowed to remember him.  It would’ve been this week or next that Kirk would’ve been born, had he been allowed to go to full term.  He would’ve been a Christmas baby.  It’s important to me to have “concrete” items with which to celebrate and remember, and I’m blessed to have been able to find what I consider the “perfect” ornament for our circumstance.

Back side of ornament

Back side of ornament

I found the ornament in an online search and sent for it.  It’s gold with autumn colored beads, and on the center piece on the front is a gold oak leaf embellished with red/orange tones.  On the back side it is engraved (4) lines:Kirk L Thomas, December 1974, Forgiven and, Set Free.

Front of Kirk's commemorative ornament

Front of Kirk’s commemorative ornament

 And with this, I think I’ve gotten the closure I needed to move on from this experience.I still have the red oak tree planted in our front yard this fall that will continue to grow and be strong.  Al put some Christmas garland around the bottom of it ~ kind of like on “A Charlie Brown Christmas” where Linus puts his blanket around the bottom of that sad little Christmas tree that Charlie Brown got.  And with that, I think I can say “Everything is going to be all right” at last.  

 

To understand where I’m coming from with this, please read Forgiven & Set Free from the start.  

 

If you’d like to visit the website where I got this amazing ornament, go to KyleDesigns.com.  They offer all kinds of beautiful ornaments and other personalized/customized items.  Their customer service was exemplary… I got my order two days prior to when it was expected!

 

 Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone!

Blessings…

Grieving Allowed ~

I still have my days where I look back to 1974 and wonder if there was anything I could’ve changed so that my son could’ve lived.  Today was one of those days.  I thought of him and what he could’ve been.  Might’ve done.  Wonder what he would’ve looked like ~ me, with brown hair and brown eyes? or his dad, blond hair and blue eyes?  Or maybe a combination of both?  I can’t help but think about it now and then, but no longer with sadness and regret, just a quiet feeling of hope.

Today I decided to take some time and do some research into abortions on the worldwide web.  It started out with doing a search on oak leaves/trees, as that is how I’ve chosen to make my son real to me.  As I’ve written in Forgiven and Set Free, the red oak tree is the concrete “symbol” for Kirk.  It gives me focus.  So I was searching for clipart and related items to use in the memory book that I’ve created for him.  In my search, I found this poem:

Oak Leaves & Lullabies

Oak Leaves & Lullabies

 It didn’t appear to have any credit(s) to it, author or any way I could connect it to the person who created it.  But it sure hit home for me, so I decided to borrow it and put it in Kirk’s memory book (I created the background images etc).  So, from there I began to think back on the events of those days in 1974, and I decided I hadn’t learned enough about the procedure that was performed in my circumstance:  the “saline abortion”.  So I Googled it. 

At first, of course, the images were startling and disturbing.  I knew the basics of what had happened and how it works, but I (for some unknown reason) wanted more details.  In delving deeper, I found that my son need not have died from such a procedure ~ unless, of course, it was God’s will.  But there are many baby’s that not only survive saline abortions, but they grow up and live normal lives, although some have expected health issues.  I also discovered that the saline abortion is illegal in many countries around the world due to its cruelty and dangerous outcomes for the mother.  Indeed, that particular method of abortion is no longer used in the United States except in extreme emergency where no other option is viable.  There are women and men who are survivors of this procedure and are public speakers against abortions as adults.

I found myself instantly wishing that the hospital staff had tried to save Kirk’s life after he was born alive.  But I know that was not God’s will.  Kirk was meant for something else, something special.  And I’m beginning to feel that the events that took place that summer of 1974 put a direction on my life that has lead to me being here, at this moment, sharing my most intimate feelings about a horrific happening.  I’ve never felt so much an advocate against abortion ~ of ALL kinds!  I am but one voice, one spirit… inspired by my Holy Father. 

Perhaps I was meant for something special, too.

Blessings to all!

 

Revealed: Introduction ~

It’s time.  This is it.  For so many years, friends and family have been encouraging me to write a book about my life’s experiences thus far.  It’s taken until now to finally feel the inspiration from God to put myself out there, after all, I have nothing more to hide.  I thought telling about my abortion at age 14 (Forgiven and Set Free) would’ve been the hardest thing to reveal, and I’ve done that.  It’s time to “come clean” with the rest, and pray that I can help someone else in the process.

I guess I would classify my story as surviving, what some could call, hell on earth, then finding my spirituality and turning my entire life around.  As shocking as some of my reveal may seem to some, it’s meant to encourage others to not give up, and to listen when God speaks to you ~ and He WILL, if you let Him, if you listen.  He can bring you through any circumstance, if you trust in Him.

“With God, all things are possible.”  ~ Matthew 19:26  

So, I’m not writing a book, exactly.  I’m going to blog about it.  Each post will be like a chapter, with this being The Beginning.  I’m not going to change any names “to protect the innocent”, but I will use initials out of respect for those who deserve it, and for those who have passed away ~ and, yes, even for those who don’t deserve it (respect)!  I make no apologies for what I’m going to reveal.  It is the truth ~ my truth, my perspective.  I will attempt to write each chapter in chronological succession, but I will be writing as my inspiration tells me.  I trust He will not steer me wrong.

Before I begin with the Chapters, I want to notably make clear that I had what I consider to be an awesome childhood.  I loved my parents, even though I didn’t know that until it was too late.  I love my siblings ~ all 4 are older than me, but not necessarily wiser… maybe in “some” ways.  I believe I had a “typical” childhood of the ‘60’s and ‘70’s.  My parents were loving people, albeit strict and they believed in corporal punishment, as do I.  We vacationed as a family each year, went to the company Christmas party at the Landmark Theatre in Syracuse, I learned to wash dishes by hand before I could reach the sink using a step stool.  We grew up in rural Upstate New York, and strung toilet paper at the “four corners of Plainville” on Halloween night, then watched as the tractor trailers drove through them and blew their horn.  My story doesn’t really begin until I became a pre-teen/teenager.  I’ll get there.

I also want my four amazing children to know, before I even begin, that I love them above and beyond anything they can ever imagine.  I would not change one aspect of my life, as that’s what it took to bring them into this world and get us to where we are today.  They have survived the tyranny, chaos and abuse I raised them under, and have become incredible adults with gorgeous children of their own.

Lastly, and most importantly, I must acknowledge my husband, Al (whose name I won’t initial), for coming into my life just when I needed him most.  I must confess that it was Al that brought God into my life… or was that vice versa?  *smiles*  They came into my life simultaneously, and I have been abundantly blessed ever since.

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”  2 Corinthians 5:17

A starred sunset over Lake Ontario from Brennan Beach RV Park & Campground near Pulaski, New York.
http://www.sthomasphotos.com or Viewsinfinitum.com

Oh, and the photo?  I’m borrowing it from another site:  www.sthomasphotos.com   I also want to recommend the blog:   http://viewsinfinitum.com/ .  This particular photo is a favorite of mine and has the effect of calming my mind and my soul, allowing me to reconnect with my Lord and God when stress is particularly abundant.  This photographer has many such “calming” photos, many involving waterfalls, nature and landscapes.  The blog is well-written and insightful, always stirring my imagination and emotions.  Worth a look.