Tag Archives: Whatcom County Pregnancy Clinic

A Single Thread

IMG_0256

There’s a wonderful song from the Disney movie, The Prince of Egypt that goes:

“A single thread in a tapestry though its colors brightly shine, can never see its purpose in the pattern of the grand design.”

IMG_2130

I’ve typed out the text to that entire song and pinned it onto my bulletin board in my office. I often refer back to the words, “a single thread,” because it reminds me that there is a much larger work going on in the world that transcends the tracks of my little footprints.

But …

the little part that I  decorate in this tapestry is woven by a Designer who has a purpose.

I am just one person who happens to volunteer each Friday at Whatcom County Pregnancy Clinic. I have no idea whose life I will touch each day as I walk through those doors at nine AM for my four-hour shift. In fact, most of the time it’s the other volunteers and staff and clients who touch me. Their stories  inspire me to keep praying for this wonderful organization, and to keep me coming back week to week.

Recently I met a lovely lady who’d been assigned to me for an Earn While You Learn twelve-week series of meetings. I’ll call her Lora, but that’s not her real name. Lora made it clear in our first meeting that she had no interest in God or any spiritual aspect of the sessions, just wanted to learn all she could about healthy pregnancy, delivery, and how to raise and nurture a young child.

It became clear to me as we talked that Lora was highly intelligent and diligent. She always did her homework assignments and when we watched videos, she was quick to apply the  information presented to her own life and marriage. We did much more that simply watch videos and fill out worksheets. We talked, and discussed, asked and answered questions, and shared information about our past experiences, our educational background, and life goals.

As the weeks flew by, Lora and I began to strongly connect, and we reached a level of trust where I was able to tell her, “I’m praying for you and your baby,” and she said she appreciated it.

One morning, out of the blue, Lora asked, “Are you a volunteer?” Which surprised me because I was pretty sure I’d told her in the first meeting that client/mentors are mainly volunteers. I told her yes.

Lora shook her head in wonder. “You mean you aren’t paid to do this?”

“Nope,”  I answered. “I just love people and want them to have the best start they can when their babies arrive.”

“That’s amazing, ’cause this is a lot of work for you.”

“It’s work, but you make it fun work.”

“And all the baby clothes and diapers and the other stuff in the baby store, who provides them?”

“They’re all donations.”

Lora is a hard-working, independent sort of gal. The kind who made her way through life by dint of a strong will and a good brain. Maybe it seemed strange to her that so many people would give of their time or their resources just so a stranger—not family, not friends, nor associates— could benefit.

I could see the wheels turning. I sure would have loved to see if Lora’s mind concluded that the love for God can indeed translate into a love for people.

On Lora’s twelfth week, we exchanged business cards, exchanged gifts, and gave each other a heart-felt hug.

I haven’t heard from Lora in the last few weeks, but I pray for her still. In some small way that I can’t see, the “grand design” was for me to meet Lora, connect with her, and show her how much I care for her.

Who knows, maybe my “single thread in a tapestry,” will be woven with other ‘threads’ in Lora’s life, leading her to seek out more people who are God-lovers and people-lovers.

img_0277

 

 

 

Other Women’s Babies

“Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!” (Luke 1:42-45)

Last night my husband and I attended the annual Christmas “Thank you” banquet for volunteers of the Whatcom County Pregnancy Clinic.

Near the end of the get-together—which was filled with games, good eats, and goodies—the staff stood up in a line and held up 8 X 11 pieces of paper, each with one letter of the word:  S-E-R-V-A-N-T. One by one, the staff described aspects of the nature of servanthood. For example, “e” would include encouragement, enabling, educating, efficient, and eager, etc. All words that we volunteers demonstrate in the carrying out of our work with clients.

I felt humbled by these words of thanks, especially since I’ve only recently begun to work with clients. There are ladies (and some gentlemen, too) who have been volunteering at the Clinic for many years and have amazing stories about how God works His grace and power into the lives of clients.

I came home thinking about the people who have poured God’s love into my own life through the years. I’m sure most of them have no idea the  fruit their kind words and actions have seeded in me.

When I asked Jesus to come into my life, I had no idea He would bless me. I only wanted relief from the misery of being detached from Him. That was all I had envisioned. I didn’t realize that my plea to God would be the start of a wonderful, rich, joy-filled adventure. God had way higher expectations for my life than I did.

I think, no, I know this is true for the clients who walk into Whatcom County Pregnancy Clinic’s doors. They only think this visit will yield an answer: “Am I pregnant? If I am, what will I do, where will I go, who will help me decide to abort or to carry this baby?”

These young women have no idea that this first or second or third visit might be their opportunity to meet God and find the answers to life’s ultimate questions: “God, are You there? Do you care about me? Can I know You? How can my life have meaning?”

I pray that our clients link the advent of their babies to the Advent of the Child. That Jesus, the Son of God, was born of a woman for the salvation of other women’s babies. Surely if God would give His only Son, He must find  each of us humans indescribably precious, the born and the not-yet-born humans.

Christmas is a time of celebrating Jesus’s birth. Of recognizing that God’s promise of a Savior has been fulfilled.

Christmas is also a time of recognizing that all life is precious. The crying of each baby at birth promises a life of God-imaged expression. Isn’t that what all women desire for their children?

“O hearken ye who would believe, the gracious tidings now receive: Gloria, gloria in excess Deo.

For at His cradle you shall find God’s healing grace for all mankind: Gloria, gloria in excess Deo.” (O Hearken Ye, by Hutson, Burt)