So now SAL makes all its volunteers sign a paper saying we won't "protest" in front of any abortion clinics. I haven't been able to go back to PP (although several of the 40 days for life participants still go on a regular basis), and for a while I felt useless because all I did was give directions over the phone and hand girls paperwork to fill out when they came in for tests. I thought about quitting a couple times so I could go back to PP, but I felt like God wanted me to stick it out just a little longer.
Well, in February, the director of SAL asked me again if I would be interested in going through training to become a counselor. I had been thinking about it for a while, so I timidly said yes. She had me start reading all the brochures and watching all the videos that I would give different clients, and in May, she scheduled the training. There were four ladies interested, and in July we finally meshed our schedules together.
I learned (sort of!) how to talk to a girl who comes in for a pregnancy test and what to say if she is abortion-minded or excited to be pregnant, if her test is positive or negative, if she is in a stable environment with a good support system or in an abusive relationship with pressure to abort. It has been overwhelming, emotional, and stressful. I wasn't really nervous until we role-played, and then my mind went SO blank and I realized I knew NOTHING!
And now, I'm a counselor! I felt so unprepared and inadequate, so I shadowed two other experienced counselors for a couple weeks. I developed my own little flow chart of questions to ask and answers to give so my mind doesn't go blank with a real client. Experience does help, but every week I still get so nervous. However, I do know that when I need words, I just have to pray and God will supply!
Some weeks, no one comes in. Other weeks, I'm so busy I don't even have time to stop and THINK! Every time I talk to a girl, my heart understands a little more and figures out how to do this thing called compassion. Sometimes I share my story so they know they aren't alone. Sometimes I just listen. Everyone is different, and although my goal for each girl is the same (let her know we care, not just about her unborn baby, but about HER, and where SHE will spend eternity), sometimes the path to that goal takes different detours.
This new ministry is scary, exhilarating, fun, and sad, but mostly eye-opening. I am so glad I listened to God's nudging to get involved in something completely OUT of my comfort zone. If there is something you are struggling with obeying God about, trust me--He won't ask you to do something He won't help you through!
If you want more information about Sav-a-life (we changed our name and are now "Positive Choices") or know someone who could benefit from free parenting classes, you can visit our facebook page here.