Thank you to those of you who were praying, thinking positive thoughts and have contacted me to ask how the women’s conference went last weekend.
The answer: It went well. Completely beyond many of my expectations.
I had to follow Heather, and let me tell you she set the bar high. She shared from her heart about prayer and talking to a God who loves us, cares about us…but also challenged us on the importance of interceding for and forgiving others.
Then it was my turn.
For some weird reason I started by sharing about my name. I really believe names matter. I hadn’t planned to do that, but for whatever bizarre reason it was where I began. I shared about David and his response to losing his son and how it tells of a hope of returning to the ones that died before us and seeing them again. I shared quotes from 2 ladies that have inspired me greatly – Angie Smith & Sarah Williams – their thoughts and struggle with grief after losing their children. And of the hope of the new heaven and earth (at this point I remember getting a little overexcited about what that might be like and how with all the freaky living creatures from Revelation 4 & 5 it was going to be ‘mental’). And I shared about my fears that I couldn’t be a Christian because of having had an abortion, and about how I had named my unborn child Sophie. And how I sometimes wonder if I was wrong about her being a girl and that when I meet her in heaven she might be like ‘Mum? Seriously? SOPHIE?! Why did you call me Sophie?!!‘
Afterwards there was much hugging. I was asked if I would stay to anoint people with oil and pray with them.
I did that for almost 2 hours.
And as I did, some women shared their stories with me. They too had lost children and grandchildren through miscarriage and termination.
The moment that will remain with me was a woman who told me about her own abortion and whispering to me as I anointed her hands with oil, that after hearing about Sophie, she felt she could now name her own unborn child and do something to remember and honour him/her.
I almost started bawling.
Mostly because I was so thankful that sharing about Sophie had made a difference by giving women permission to grieve.
Thank you to all the ladies at Liberton Northfield Church for making me feel so welcome and giving me the opportunity to speak.