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"God, Today I'm Ready for You to Blow My Socks Off!"

From Shame to Grace

It always amazes me how God has a beautiful plan for each of our lives.  

In Jeremiah 29:11 it says "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."  This is our belief at New Life.  Each person who walks through our door has been gifted by God to do great things for His Kingdom. 

He has shown me this to be very true in my own life.  I started out my adult life pregnant and then married at 19 years old.  I was ashamed of myself for being pregnant and yet joyful at the thought of my coming child.  I believe that having sex before marriage was a mistake, but my daughter was not.  She was made by God for a purpose and He controls when every child is conceived.  Once I was married, my husband Brent and I worked very hard at our marriage and parenting.  It was not easy.  Without our belief system and God's loving hand on our marriage, it was in danger of failing.  God lovingly placed Christian brothers and sisters in our path who spoke the truth into our lives.  We have now been married 22 years and have three great kids.

I have held a few different job titles in my life.  I sold Tupperware, was a classroom aide, and did janitorial work at my church.  Each of these brought some fulfillment but never really made me feel like it was my calling.  God was preparing me for the thing He was calling me to through each of these positions. He masterfully used a part of each of them to prepare me for New Life.  When He called me to the pregnancy center I was shocked.  I was washing windows at the church when Bonnie called me on my cell phone.  It was a blocked call so I really didn't know who it was or if I should answer.  I'm so glad that I did.  She stated who she was and that I came highly recommended for a position that had come open.  She asked if I was interested in it.  I said sure, what is it?  Well, what it was led me to what I am today, the executive director of the New Life Pregnancy Resource Center.

God has given me a ministry that takes something that brought me shame when I was 19 and uses it to help others.  That amazes me!  He wants to do that for everyone.  He never wants us to sin but He still goes forward with His plan in spite of our actions.  That is grace!

It is my prayer every morning that we can show God's love to all who walk through our doors.  Each of us at New Life knows what God's forgiveness and grace means in our own lives.  We want to see everyone meet their Savior and then discover that no matter where they have been God has an amazing plan for each of them.  This is our goal in ministry.  I thank God for allowing me the privilege of being called into His ministry at New Life.  It is an honor to be called to be a laborer in His Kingdom work.

Julie Holmes

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