Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Imagine That!

By Julie Surface Johnson
September 8, 2009

Imagine you're a young woman with a long history of abuse. You've been told all your life you'd never amount to anything, that no one would give you the time of day, that you are hopeless. Your self-esteem doesn't even register on a scale of 1-10.

Imagine one day a man looks at you and smiles. He treats you to an ice cream cone and tells you that you're pretty. He takes you for a ride in his car and does things that scare you, but you're afraid to object because he might not like you anymore.

Imagine one day you discover you've missed your period . . . the first time ever! But it happens again, and you notice that your breasts hurt and you have to pee more often and you're suffering from fatigue.

Imagine you tell the man, and he cusses and says he'll take you to a place where they'll "get rid of the kid."

Imagine what you would do if you were her. Imagine that!

Across the country, young women like the one described above visit pregnancy resource centers and find a listening ear and outstretched arms. They find the support they need in a safe, confidential, non-judgmental environment. Whether it's factual information (about their pregnancy options), material goods and services (housing, adoption, legal, medical referrals, or maternity and baby clothing) or emotional and spiritual support, these centers save lives and mend broken hearts.

You can find the pregnancy resource center nearest you by visiting their website www.pregnancycenters.org or by phoning 1-800-395-HELP.

We never know what goes on behind closed doors in our own neighborhoods. Nor can we guess the pain behind the forced smile of the young lady sitting next to us in church. But we can pray and we can support organizations that offer the help these women need. Find one in your area by visiting www.pregnancycenters.org.

"Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." -Matthew 7:1-2

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