The Choose Life Plate saves another baby!
I am not a writer, however I must tell you this amazing story for LIFE!
Yesterday we had a very abortion minded/abortion determined client come in. While meeting with client advocates, she was visibly shaken, nervous and her mind was made up! Her story not unlike others was awful. I won't go into the details to protect her confidentiality. She got up abruptly before even taking our pregnancy test and said she just could not listen to anything else. Our client advocates were devastated to say the least. There was a lot of ministering to do after the appointment. As we know we turn these clients over to the Lord because we do NOT save babies He does. We are obedient to the call, He does the rest.
Much to our surprise she called today and asked to come back....there was not one client advocate who could see her today, so I decided I would see her and complete the work that was left undone yesterday. I have not seen a client in many, many months! She announced to me right at the beginning of the appointment that she was sorry for leaving the way she did. She has always been 110% against abortion, but fear was driving her in so many ways. I asked her what changed her heart and mind. She said after leaving through tears, she stopped at a red light and looked up and the license plate in front of her said...CHOOSE LIFE! She said it was as if God was speaking directly to her! She will receive an ultrasound in two weeks and join our Earn While You Learn program after that!
I will tell this story at our Banquet this year and I will challenge every attendee to buy a plate. Not only do these plates help with finances for girls placing for adoption, they literally saved an innocent life yesterday!
Marcia B. in Eustis, FL
Choose Life license plates cause Mom to reconsider
Teresa (not her real name) arrived at a pregnancy center in Tampa, FL and told her story to a counselor. She was coming to have an abortion and saw several Choose Life license plates on the 10 mile drive. When she arrived at the abortion clinic, she told Judy, the counselor out front “You are a sign and seal that what I was about to do was wrong” She drove off knowing her future was going to be rough, but pretty well assured that God was going to use her in His plan.
Our First Save...
“Believing that legal action prevented us from buying the customized Choose Life license plates from the state of FL, my husband purchased a generic front Choose Life plate from Hosanna House for the front of my car. One day, as I was pumping gas, a young girl (probably in her early twenties) approached me. She asked me where I had purchased my Choose Life tag, because she wanted to get one. She unfolded her story that as a college student she found herself pregnant with her third child. Eager to finish college she made an appointment to have an abortion. On her way to the clinic she followed a car with a Choose Life license tag. As she got closer to the clinic she could not bring herself to keep her appointment, because the message on the tag spoke so loudly to her. She followed through with her pregnancy and now has a 9 month old son that joined her two young daughters. She testified that she would not change things now and is enjoying her little boy. Obviously she feels so good about her decision that she wants a tag for her car, in hopes she can help someone else make a decision for life!
I went away truly blessed by that 5 minute encounter. I still have warm fuzzies as I write this short testimonial. I did share with her where I had gotten my tag. I gave her a hug and thanked her for giving her son life and sharing the blessing with me. Hind sight always being wiser, I wished that I had had the presence of mind to take my tag off and give it to her. Perhaps she will continue to bless others with her story ‘til she finds someone that thinks a little faster than I do!”
My name is Alecia...
When I walked into First Coast Women's Services in Jacksonville, FL in January 2002, I was 5 weeks pregnant. I was raised in a Christian home where I was taught sex outside marriage was not in God's plan. How was I going to face my parents? I knew how disappointed and devastated they would be. I was in my third year of college and saw my hopes and dreams fading away. My counselor encouraged me, prayed for me and pointed me to Christ for answers to my situation. But during the first weeks it was very hard. I even considered suicide. Gradually, I began to see I had to live for me and my baby. My counselor suggested that I look at the options of single parenting and adoption. At first I was totally against adoption. That would be running away from my responsibility, but as I looked at my circumstances, I knew that at this time in my life I could not give my baby the home I wanted him to grow up in. I decided his needs had to come before mine. I learned about the various types of adoption and looked at biographies of couples wanting to adopt and selected Mike and Ann, because Mike reminded me of my father. He was like a teddy bear with loving eyes. Ann was a teacher, which is what I was studying to be. I was also pleased to learn about the Choose Life license plate and how the funds would pay my expenses. During the entire process, I did not have to pay any of the expenses related to my pregnancy. The funds provided by people who had switched to the Choose Life license plate in Duval County covered them all.
Two months ago I experienced a joy that I can not describe. Mike and Ann brought Austin to see me. He is chubby, healthy and so happy. My family and my counselor celebrated this reunion with me.
Many people comment they could not have done what I did. They do not understand how the adoption process has changed. Open adoptions allow for various levels of continuing contact with my son. This journey has been a hard and wonderful thing for me, and it has held so much more joy than sorrow. My pain was eased by knowing I was doing what was right for my son and the joy came from seeing the love Mike and Ann showered on Austin.
I thank God for my parents who taught me right from wrong; my counselor who loved and cared for me & was with me every step of the way and the thousands of people who switched to the Choose Life license plate who lifted the financial burden from me; even helping cover some of the costs that Mike and Ann would have had to pay.
Success comes to Pasco County...
This is just a little update on our first adoption client (Missy) here in Pasco County using Choose Life funds. Last Tuesday we were able to help her get into her own apartment - you should have seen her eyes, it was awesome. The future-adoptive grandparents gave her some furniture and the rest we bought in thrift stores and Dollar stores. One of the sweetest things she told me was that once she gets back on her feet, she is going to have her own car one day, and she is definitely going to have a Choose Life License Tag on it!
It really amazes me that some people are NOT aware of the Choose Life license plate and how much good it is doing. I was attending a coalition meeting with Healthy Families the other day. No one there knew about the plate or how the funds were being used. I educated them and shared our success story with them.
I see Choose Life license plates everywhere! It is such an encouragement to see so many people who believe in what we are trying to do to help women in crisis pregnancy situations, not to mention the monetary boost that the plates have provided! Our maternity home residents who have chosen adoption have been helped tremendously by the Choose Life funds. We have been able to purchase uniforms, home school curriculum, and much needed clothing and personal items for our residents.
I'll keep you informed about our progress and once I have pictures you'll get some copies.
God bless you and the Choose Life license plate effort!
West Pasco Pregnancy Center, New Port Richey, Fl
Letter of Testimony from Children's Home
"What if I told you I could help pay your expenses to carry your baby to term so that she can be adopted by a 'forever family' and the adoption won't cost you a penny?"
That is a powerful, practical, and hope-giving resource that our social workers are able to use with women experiencing a crisis pregnancy. And it is because of Choose Life funds granted to us from the sale of license plates. It has happened many times over that women come to us for help, without money or hope, looking for a 'way out' of their pregnancy. we are able to offer them both money and hope, and change their 'way out' from abortion to adoption.
The Choose Life funds allow us to assist women in making a positive choice for their unborn child. I want to thank you for helping us access those funds and for being a tireless supporter of the Choose Life license plate program. With your help, we're making a positive difference in the lives of children for all eternity.
M. Jamie S
Florida Baptist Children's Home, Lakeland, FL
Letter of Testimony from Maternity Home
On behalf of the residents at Manasota SOLVE licensed maternity home and the families we serve through our Pregnancy Care Center, thank you for making the Choose Life license plate a reality.
Not only do the license plates put out a positive message, it also aids us in running our maternity home. Many young, pregnant girls valiantly choose life for their unborn babies but feel they are not in a position to raise them. Therefore, lovingly, an adoptive couple is chosen. The Choose Life funds help us provide a stress-free, loving environment for these young women at no cost to them.
Manasota S.O.L.V.E., Inc., Bradenton, FL
One More Life For Eternity
Scared, confused, and uninformed, Joshua’s birth mother made plans to abort him. She had made her decision – so she thought.
A friend encouraged her to call Florida Baptist Children’s Homes, and in God’s perfect timing, she received information from one of our adoption specialists about other options available to her. She learned about the redemptive love of God and the hope-giving resource of Choose Life funds, which tremendously helped this birth mother pay her expenses to carry this baby to term. Ultimately, she chose to place her baby boy with a “forever family” through the journey of adoption. Upon his birth, the adoptive parents named him Joshua, which means “God is my Salvation.” Every day the adoptive parents pray for his birth mother, and they tell him the decision she made for him was made in love.
The Choose Life funds have allowed us to assist women in making the choice of life for their unborn children. I am forever grateful to God for our partnership with Russ and Jill Amerling. Through their tireless support and promotion of the Choose Life license plate program, as well as the donations from those who purchase Choose Life license plates, we are making a positive difference in the lives of children for all eternity.
Florida Baptist Children's Homes
Mary Lou Hendry, Director of Sanctity of Human Life
Watching God Work
As the CEO of Hope Women’s Center, my day-to-day job can be quite stressful. I am constantly needed and always busy. After a while, all of the pressure builds up, but always before my breaking point, God reminds me of why I put so much effort into this work. Seeing Him move in unexpected ways gives me the passion to keep going.
One such time started in the morning when I sent out an email to all of our Center Directors. I was reminding them that we still had Choose Life funds that we could use for our clients carrying a pregnancy to term who then choose to make an adoption plan. We only had a few weeks until June 30, which was the end of the Choose Life fiscal year; our annual report would be due then.
Later in the day, one of our Center Directors was making follow-up calls when she connected with our client named Tiffany. She was calling to see how she was doing. While they were talking, Tiffany suddenly burst into tears and began explaining her current situation. She had given birth to a baby boy and had followed through on the plan that they had made to place him for adoption. She was a single mom who was already struggling financially with two children to care for, and after her visit to Hope, she believed that adoption would be the right choice for her baby. Still, even while knowing intellectually that she had made the correct decision, she was struggling with the reality of placing her baby, as well as other pressures in her life.
As they continued to talk, the Center Director learned that Tiffany had a new job; however, her current landlord was evicting her for non-payment of the rent that she incurred during the last stages of her pregnancy when she couldn’t work. She was also behind on her utility bills and felt as if the whole world was caving in around her. She was praying that the eviction would not go through; there was nowhere for her to go. But she needed a few weeks to get back on her feet with the new job. Her future was bleak and she was running out of time. The Center Director’s mind drifted back to the email that I had sent out earlier and ended the call, promising only to call Tiffany back later.
After checking in with me and receiving assurance that we could indeed help her pay the rent and utility bills with the Choose Life funds, she called back the same day.
“Tiffany, I have wonderful news for you.” She paused briefly, “I talked with our president and… we can help you with your bills!”
Tiffany gasped, as she tried to control her emotions. A massive sigh of relief was followed by a joyful, “Thank you Jesus!” She knew God had heard her prayers and could not hold back the tears of joy!
Every day we tell our clients that God loves them and has a wonderful plan for their lives. That day I felt so blessed to be able to see how He demonstrated to Tiffany, in a practical way, the love that we had told her about. When I think back on days like this one, I am reminded just how privileged I really am to be able to help these lovely ladies. Thankfulness overflows from me when I think of the Choose Life program and all of their supporters who can make stories like these a reality.
Hope Women’s Center, North Lauderdale, Florida
The Weight Of The World On Her Shoulders
The funds allocated to the Emergency Pregnancy Services (EPS) through the Choose Life program have been incredibly valuable to the women that we serve. When a woman walks through our doors, she is almost always either already aware she is pregnant or afraid that she is. This can be a terrifying experience. Imagine being young and alone. Now imagine that at the same time there is a tiny baby being formed inside of you, and you alone will have to parent that child for at least eighteen years. These mothers often bear the weight of their entire family's future on their shoulders. They may be considering aborting the child simply because they do not know what else to do or because they feel the pressure of the situation is too immense to handle.
We find that when counselors at EPS bring up the possibility of adoption, the clients initially decline it as an option. They tend to make statements such as “I can’t even afford the prenatal care” or “I can barely keep a roof over my head now; how am I going to do that while pregnant?” That is where the Choose Life funds really make a difference. The funds that we can provide because of Choose Life can cause the paralyzing weight of the situation to subside. This allows the mother to consider all of her options without feeling helpless because of finances.
Our counselors share with the clients that there are funds available to help them with some of the costs they may incur during the pregnancy. This often comes as a huge relief to a woman who, up to that point, felt like she had very few options. Something as simple as knowing that these funds can help with the expense of maternity clothes or the gas to get back and forth to the doctor’s appointments suddenly make the thought of carrying her child to term seem possible.
One such woman came into our offices about six months ago. She knew she was pregnant before she arrived and had also decided beforehand that she could not possibly parent her child. She came to EPS looking for options. When her counselor suggested adoption, she had many of the same reservations we had heard before. She told the counselor that she already had a young daughter and knew how expensive pregnancy could be. She worried that the cost of the pregnancy would take resources away from her daughter, who she felt was already doing with very little. She was also concerned about how she would cope with placing her child and whether or not she would develop depression or other issues as a result. Lastly, she feared that if an adoptive family covered the costs of the pregnancy, she would not be able to change her mind.
During the time that she worked with the attorney, she continued to stay in touch with EPS and could still access Choose Life funds for needed items like gift cards to stores where she could purchase maternity clothing and gas cards to help her get to and from appointments. Perhaps most importantly, she was able to access counseling with a licensed therapist who helped her decide if adoption was truly the right decision for her and her family.
These resources helped to eliminate a huge burden on a young woman who was already struggling and was faced with one of the biggest decisions of her life. Ultimately, this young woman found a family that she thought was ideal for her baby and selected them to parent her child. She told us that without the services of EPS and the Choose Life funds, her situation would have been much more difficult and she may not have been strong enough to make the decision that she did. She is a wonderful example of someone who received a little support that made a huge difference in her life and the life of her child.
Emergency Pregnancy Services,
A Fearful Family
The car ride was bumpy on the way to the Pregnancy Center. Her empty stomach gurgled, making her feel sick, and dealing with the possibility of a baby growing inside her just made her more nauseous. Thirteen-year-old Alison (not her real name) lifted her head up just enough to see her mother at the helm of their van, frowning and silent. Closing her eyes, she wished with everything she had that this was all just a bad dream. Unfortunately, she was jerked back into reality as the vehicle parked. They had arrived.
The single mom brought her daughter into our office requesting a pregnancy test. Their plan was to have an abortion if it read positive. Allison's mother did not want to have to face her friends and co-workers with the news that her middle school daughter was now pregnant. Allison shared her sentiment, but with an emphasis on fear. After we found that the test read positive, we were able to convince the mother to agree to an ultrasound.
A few minutes later, the two of them were glued to a screen, peering at the grayscale video feed in front of them. The ultrasound revealed that Allison was approximately sixteen weeks pregnant. Upon seeing the little baby in the process of being knitted inside of the young girl’s womb, the single mother instantly changed her mind and told the daughter that they should not go through with an abortion. Our young client and her single mom decided instead to make an adoption plan.
It was pure joy for everyone in our office as well as for them that a positive decision had been made. At Resources For Women, we celebrate every day the much-needed help that the Choose Life funds have brought Allison as well as countless other girls who find themselves in trouble with a crisis pregnancy. The Choose Life funds help these young women see their pregnancy through to the end, relieving the financial burden that an unplanned pregnancy can bring.
Resources for Women, Daytona Beach, Florida
Faith Overcame Fear
Alice, a single mom with one child already, first came to our center in April 2014. She shared that she was struggling financially and did not want her coworkers to know she was pregnant.
Through counseling, she chose adoption for her baby. With the help of an adoption agency, she chose a family for her little girl. We were able to help meet some of her financial needs with the Choose Life license plate funds. She decided to share her pregnancy with her coworkers and was surprised and comforted by their support.
At our banquet last year, Alice shared her story, surrounded by the loving adoptive, family. She explained how wonderful it felt to be a blessing to a family who wanted a child, a family that could care for her little girl in a way that she was not able.
She added that she was grateful to the Choose Life license plate organization for making the funds available to help her continue her pregnancy and complete the adoption plan for her child.
She added that she was grateful to the Choose Life license plate organization for making the funds available to help her continue her pregnancy and complete the adoption plan for her child.
Citrus Pregnancy Center, Inverness, Florida
Updated: March 23, 2017