Deo Gratias

 

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Thanks be to God for the many blessings granted to my family recently. From the lawyer offering to represent me gratis, to support from my friends and family for my business ventures, to the good news that my bank will finance a house for us, I feel very blessed and grateful.

 

 

“I plead with you, never, ever give up on hope, never doubt, never tire, and never become discouraged. Be not afraid.” John Paul II

Post-Abortion Syndrome – the ultimate empty nest phenomenon…

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There is always an air of urgency surrounding the entire abortion issue – because it is literally a matter of life and death. Legal access to abortion ensures the continuing destruction of unborn children – no one in their right mind can deny this. Less well understood is the impact that abortion has on the post-abortive mother and father, living siblings, grandparents, and society as a whole, which witnesses a callous disregard for human rights and enshrines it in law.

Post-abortion syndrome covers a range of mental-health issues, from addictions and depression, increased likelihood of subsequent abortions, inability to sustain meaningful, intimate relationships, through to suicidal tendencies. Relationships with living biological children of the post-abortive woman may be affected, and the syndrome could possibly be extended to cover those living siblings who suffer from a type of “survivor-guilt.” Maternal death rates increase for the post-abortive woman. Panic attacks and anxiety are common.Many post-abortive women claim to experience feelings of being “forced” or “coerced” into having their abortion – surely this is the polar opposite of the “empowerment” promised by the pro-choice movement.

The results from one study, conducted in New Zealand in 2005, were startling enough to convince the researchers to suggest that medical doctors should aim to reduce the number of referrals for abortions in that country, simply on the grounds that the emotional trauma sustained by a woman undergoing an abortion was greater than any risk presented by carrying her baby to term and delivering the child. This study is notable because the lead researcher had no religious affiliation, was in fact an atheist, and remained pro-choice after the studies were concluded. Another study, conducted in 2003, showed that post-abortive woman were 63% more likely to undergo mental health treatment in the 90 days following an abortion, compared to following a delivery.

The proliferation of support groups for post-abortive mothers in recent years gives an indication of both the undeniable existence of and  the need for education about post-abortion syndrome. Many of these groups have been begun by women who felt traumatized by the experience of an abortion; an experience which was compounded by a lack of disclosure by medical authorities of the exact nature of abortion and its aftermath.

We live in times of great uncertainty and moral upheaval. A cult of selfishness has evolved throughout the Western world, and the utmost importance is placed on the notion of ‘convenience.’ Our society appears to have suspended its train of logic and waits with collective bated breath to be told by the media how to live and what to believe in next. Many lies are being perpetrated and one of the most damaging lies of our age is that there are no consequences to the intentional termination of an unborn baby’s life. But, in fact, there is much evidence to suggest that post-abortion syndrome is a common, if not inevitable experience for a woman who has chosen to abort her baby; we all have a right to hear more about it.

 

Home Essentials – Obedience

Note to self:

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The most important rule of a well-regulated family, of a family founded on love and unity, is that the children show an unbounded trust in and obedience to their parents. Jesus practiced this for thirty years in Nazareth for we hear nothing of Him but that ‘he was subject to them,’that is, He did what He was told.

from “The Joy in Loving” by Mother Teresa.

Another business update

319616It’s only a few days until I open my online business, and I’m a little apprehensive.

If anyone had told me how much work would be involved, I don’t think I would have ever begun.

There is so much to think about, and I have had so many technical difficulties, mostly due to my lack of skill in that department. I am easily overwhelmed by computers and internet that don’t work the way I need them to – you would laugh if you saw how slow I am at typing, how I shake my temperamental mouse, how impatient I am with this amazing technology that has made our lives so much easier.

One of the little ones jumped on my laptop last week and broke the screen. I didn’t even launch an investigation into finding the identity of the culprit – I just didn’t want to go through the rigmarole of “not me” or “I don’t know” or try and match up the various alibis – I am fairly sure that it was an under five who didn’t even know what they’d done. (Now – the lipstick episode is another matter entirely….)

So I have borrowed another laptop, which doesn’t run all of my programmes, but is a blessing because all of the keys are intact – one trademark of the twins is that they enjoy removing keyboard letters, a legacy they passed onto Danielle when she was old enough.

My babysitter gave me a great inspirational card – it says: “The task ahead of you is never as great as the power within you” and is based on Philippians 4:13 – ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.’

This has really kept me going – I keep it on the fridge and refer to it when I pass. Reading these words makes me physically relax, and I feel that I am actually giving my work over to Jesus, Who gets things done so much better than me, anyway.

I am now in the position where I have to support my family. There, I actually mentioned it in my blog.
It’s not something I want. The business was going to be a little hobby, the first thing I had ever done ‘outside the home’, so to speak. (It’s obviously ‘inside the home’, as an online business.)

Now it has come to be so much more. This is going to be a big part of the future for me and my children.

I am going to try to type the next words – I am a single mum with ten children.
Hmmm. I don’t really like the sound of that.
Your will be done, Lord.

Mary didn’t understand everything when she said ‘yes’ to God, and I certainly don’t understand what’s happening now.

There’s a fearful irony at work here – in doing something I never planned to do, in circumstances I didn’t choose, I feel that I may become the person I was always meant to be.

Home Essentials – Peace

Today’s post is about uncertainty.

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I’m sure that, at one time or another, almost everyone has contemplated the thought of Mary’s uncertainty, as she travelled to Bethlehem on that first Christmas, two thousand years ago.

She was expecting her first child, a poor young woman with no resources, except her faithful husband and faithful God. Many of us have wondered what it would be like to arrive in an unfamiliar town and have nowhere to stay, and then to actually go into labour that night, with no midwife or doctor, no clean bed, and most of our baby’s requirements left at home. (Mary had swaddling clothes, so maybe that is a little like us being able to grab some disposables from the 7-11.)

But, the truth is, that we all have very uncertain lives. We literally don’t know what tomorrow will bring. We have no idea when we will be called to leave this world. We can ‘read the signs of the times’ and get a feel for events moving into place around us, but as for the exact circumstances of tomorrow, or even later today, or even five minutes’ time, well, who knows?

God does, of course.

The Bible is filled with stories, amazing stories, of the uncertainty of men and women and the faithfulness of their God.

The Apostles were no strangers to uncertainty, even though they lived with Jesus, day in and day out. It may seem surprising to be reading about Jesus’ Last Supper during this time of Advent, but, Jesus’ words on that night are really the crux of His mission on earth and show us the certainty that He promised to give us to replace the uncertainty always present in our lives.

Jesus promised us peace. He never assured us that we will experience wealth, happiness (as in always getting everything we desire), stability, good health, freedom from war and tyranny. Some of His followers do experience blessings; some are freely given, some are given as an answer to much prayer, some are given miraculously, but none of those blessings are guaranteed.

Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. ” John 14:27.

It was peace that marked the lives of Mary and Joseph, as they passed through their many trials. It was peace that the shepherds experienced, when they arrives at the humble shelter to honour the baby Jesus. And it is peace that the world craves – the world will not be converted with an intellectual argument; if that were so, then we would have no atheists today. When we have peace, true peace, not a false acceptance of error or sin, and when we live that peace, then not only can we cope with whatever life throws our way, but we also learn to listen, to better help our children, to make good decisions, to discern the Will of God, to have dialogue with other Christians, to build bridges.

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Business Update

It’s hard to go from contemplating the words of John Paul II to writing about business matters. But, when I remind myself that our business will be helping to support my family, then, it’s as if a circuit is connected which allows the spiritual principles continue to flow into the material needs.

The Etsy shop is set to open on January 1st – if I make it to midnight on New Year’s Eve, then I’ll open the shop then with a few clicks. The 1st of January is a great Feast day, dedicated to the Mother of God, and I like to attend Mass on that day, to dedicate the whole year to Our Lady, and through her, to God. Opening the shop on that day is my way of dedicating the entire business venture to the Lord.

I’m also working on a Facebook page for the shop; there’s not much there yet, but I should be able to post some photos today.

Here are some of the resources that I’ve been gleaning information from:

How to Start a Home-based Online Retail Business by Jeremy Shepherd

http://www.createhype.com
http://www.MyWifeQuitHerJob.com
http://www.christianpf.com

Etsy posts a number of really helpful tutorials about all facets of starting and growing a craft-related business. Some of the topics I have looked at are: costing, designing a shop banner, photographing shop items.

I’m always interested in finding out more about running a small business, so fell free to leave some links that you have found helpful.

We are also going to be moving house in the New Year, so pray for me that I will be able to keep it all together.
God’s blessings to you all.