God Held Me From Start To Finish

      – God Held Me From Start To Finish – 

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Picture a time in your life that stands out. One you can perfectly picture after ten, twenty, or even thirty years.

It’s been 31 years now since that certain day I shared in my last posting. That day I can still picture perfectly. That day that changed my life, and turned my ‘Me, Myself, and I ’ into a ‘Me, My Daughter, Together ’. (last writing) That day that I turned into a 19 year-old mother, opening my eyes a bit more to just how much God held me from start to finish.

I had learned what feeling like dirt really meant the night my dream of ‘waiting for my wedding night’ evaporated. But thankfully I learned what something else meant; forgiveness. God showed me through that entire pregnancy that I was forgiven. But that’s not all. He knew I needed to know He was going to continue carrying me. The support I got, (1*2*) the doctor I had, (3*) it being an easy pregnancy, (5*) the okay to enjoy Hoagy sandwiches, (6*) and of course the very short labor I endured are just a few of the ways, I like to say, He proved His Fatherly love to His nineteen year old daughter.

I don’t want anyone to think I was tearless at all. Nope. There were many tears the entire pregnancy, but God kept lifting me up. When I was holding that baby, it felt like God was holding me, letting me know I was His child, having me feel the promise He’d never let me go. He helped keep me going with a little more pease that day I saw my daughter than I expected, even after that peaceful feeling inside grew as each month of my pregnancy went by.  This song words it perfectly.

 

 

Now being 32 years older, a wife, mother of four, daughter-in-law, sister-in-law, mother-in-law, a gramma, plus more, life is quite a bit different than it was back then. I see, however, how that entire nine month of being pregnant gave me a bit more strength as years followed. I have gone through more situations and circumstances I would have loved to have just driven around and not through. But no. God saw fit to have me drive smack into a few more trials on that road He knew was best for me to go on. I am, however, convinced God used my unplanned pregnancy to show me He’s there, and that He cares for whatever would take place.

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I’d like to encourage you all, that, even if you do not feel it 24/7, God is right there 25/8 no matter what situation you are in. He will, if you put Him first, eventually raise you up so you can feel like you can stand on a mountain, or walk on that stormy sea.

 

On His own shoulders He will make you strong and make you more than you think you can be. 

 The LORD is gracious and full of compassion, Slow to anger and great in mercy. (Psalms 145:8)

 

If you want to read the entire story, grab it in book or kindle form through Amazon – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blogs, mariannesmemoirs.com.

Ready or Not . . .

                          – Ready or Not . . . –ec58bf0d437da63dd1fd40ab41a4c229

My new life as an unwed mother was just a hop, skip, and a jump – and a push – away.  It was to be any day now that I’d be experiencing what giving birth would actually be like, and what having the name ‘Mom’ would feel like. Was I ready? Do dogs meow? Of course not!  Having that feeling that God, family, and friends were right next to me was why I was the most ready I could be. 

Days before the due date, 99.99% of my thoughts were centered around that due date. Thankfully, that .01% left was taken up by something I was extra excited to be part of.  I’ll let my book, God and Your Pillow, explains what took place March 8th, 1987.


God and Your Pillow – Chapter 11

You’ve heard the old saying ‘Never go to an energetic concert a few nights before your due date,’ right? Okay, I made that up, but I can’t help but give advice to you all. Don’t go to an energetic concert a few nights before your due date. Even if it’s a Christian concert. If my pillow could scream, I’m sure it would have told me what a crazy idea that was. 

In a few days my life would change majorly, so this concert was a perfect distraction. What a great time, just hanging out with Willma, surrounded by tons of other people, listening to music we loved, knowing every word of every song. 

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I sure noticed people looking at me, most likely thinking I was a bit crazy being there with my stomach sticking ‘out to here,’ but oh well, I didn’t mind. After all, I felt great. We had a ball just singing right along with people crammed all around us. One of those concerts where everyone stood up the entire time, swaying back and forth.

Concert done. Willma and I totally enjoyed it. Darn it, back to real life. 

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I’ll never forget that night. Since weeks had been going by with major discomfort when ever I went to bed, going to that concert was perfect to distract me from all that pain. God knew it was best for me to simply go have some fun and escape life for a spell before my next chapter in life would begin. 

 

imagesCan you think of any time He’s done that for you? Try. Try to think of some larger than normal ordeal you were waiting for. Or, maybe it was something you had no idea was going to take place. Can you then think of something that may have happened shortly before that occurred, where God was just letting you know He wanted you to enjoy your surroundings a bit more than normal being, perhaps, something difficult was soon to follow. Could He have done that to remind you He is your Father who just wanted to pass onto you that little Fatherly love reminder?  There are a few other times throughout my story God showed that to me, proving again and again He cared. He cares for you, too. 

Now, back to my story.  

If you listen to one of the many songs my friend and I heard that night, you’ll understand how it was impossible to just sit down and relax. You’ll also understand why I like to blame that concert for what happened early that next morning. (Get ready to dance.)

 

 To be continued.

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

Blessings of My Unplanned Pregnancy Unwrapped (Part 3)

 

              Blessings of My Unplanned Pregnancy Unwrapped (Part 3)

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My unplanned pregnancy at the tender age of nineteen was thirty years ago, but the blessings I noticed back then I still hold tight to my heart today. These last few writings I’ve shared older posts to show how God was right there with me. (1* 2*) But this week I’m using a piece from my book titled God and Your Pillow, showing another obvious sign of His Fatherly love through that intense trial.


                                                     God and Your Pillow

 

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Willma was the next one I had to tell.

“Sure you can come over,” Willma said after I called to see if we could get together. “It’s pretty much lunchtime, so I’ll start throwing a few sandwiches together.”

I pondered how to tell her as I walked down to her house, that last house on our dead-end street. I knew it was just her there, so when I came up to the door, I took a deep breath.

Okay, here I go. While knocking lightly, I slowly opened the front door.

“Hi, Willma. I’m here. Where are — ”

“Come on in. I’m back in the kitchen, right in the middle of making our lunch,” she said as I walked in. Willma was her normal, cheery self. I could tell she was ready to talk away. Out of all the things in the world to talk about, she started talking about, gulp, the future. Half joking but half serious, she said, “Hey Marianne, it’s time we think more about when you and I move out. Let’s figure out what college you or I’ll be going to. What if you go to the same one I already go to?” 

Breathe.

“We can try to get the same dormitory. Heck, the same room! Or maybe I’ll work while you go there and we’ll split the rent. I know, how about —.”

As she was talking, so full of energy, my mind began filling to the brim with thoughts. You know how you can think of twenty different things in three seconds? Well, that’s what I was doing. Sad to think how she and I wouldn’t really be able to make many spur-of-the-moment plans, as we had been doing for years. I was angry at myself for letting this happen, and a bit scared as to what this could do to our friendship. So much was being tossed around in my mind.

“Willma.” It was obvious this was the time to tell her. “I have something I need to tell you. We can’t really do that stuff you’re talking about because . . . I’m . . . I’m pregnant.”

There, I did it. Now what? What will she say? What will she do?

She stopped what she was doing, frozen for two seconds, realizing I wasn’t kidding.

“Oh. Uh, I guess we’ll, um, have to alter our plans just a bit,” she said calmly, a numb look on her face as she walked by with sandwich makings in her hands. Her look, however, instantly started changing, showing her mind forming different thoughts. I knew she would be shocked, and sure, I figured her emotions would be zig-zagging in all different directions. Thankfully, though, as I shared the entire story with her, I could tell her thoughts were getting straight once again.

While eating that lunch, I heard my best friend tell me she’d be there and how God would not let go of me. Not really hearing those types of words from my family, hearing it from her was priceless.

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The more we discussed the pros and cons of keeping or adoption, we both leaned toward me keeping the baby. No decisions whatsoever on what to do regarding money, the baby’s father, work, and other matters. Just on whether I should be the mother of this baby.

 

As I was walking out that same door I came in, I felt God had used my friend as a means for guidance and a means to give me strength. My name was changed once again on my walk home. Marianne A-Bit-More-Peace-To-Keep-Baby Houstoun


 

I am one who strongly believes God has given us the Bible as our supreme guide in matters theological and practical. However, I did realize back then He will use a certain person to guide us while at the same time showing us He cares.

I’d sure love to read your testimony of how God showed He was there for you, right by your side, during a trial in your life.

1* – click here to read part 1

2* – click here to read part 2.

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

Blessings of My Unplanned Pregnancy Unwrapped (Part 2)

          – Blessings of My Unplanned Pregnancy Unwrapped (Part 2) –

 

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My soon-to-be published memoir shares my before, during and after unplanned pregnancy experience. Having already shared bit’s and pieces of that life changing soap opera, I now want to continue explaining how God knew I needed to sense He was there with me as time went on. 

My last writing (1*) shows God’s guidance through an unanswered phone call. It was sort of that first little tap on my shoulder from God saying, “Don’t worry Marianne. I got ya covered.” Okay, maybe not in those exact words, but looking at it now, that’s how I see it.

Here’s another one of my past writings to show God’s second way He showed me He was there. It occurred right after taking that pregnancy test. (2*)  I know some have not read it yet so it’s now a must, or if you have, then read it again to know what story I’m talking about. Go ahead. I’ll wait.

(I’ll just go grab some hot cocoa while I wait till you’re done)

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Now that you’re back, I think you will agree why, after all these years, I’ll never forget those few minutes. God made sure I, in a way, felt His own hug, showing me He too was there.

Let me encourage all who now or have gone through any trial. You may not really have noticed right then and there His presence. However,  if your heart, soul and mind seek after Him, there’s a good chance you’ll be realizing He is or had been holding you all along. And if you’re at all like me, you’ll never forget it. 

1Peter 5:6-7  Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.

Deuteronomy 31:8  And the Lord, He is the One with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.

To be continued –

(1*) – Last shared posting

(2*) Click here to read the second way God showed He was there. 

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.