Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A BUMP IN LIFE - Amy Ford - One Free Book

Readers, I first met Amy when I attended one of the Embrace Grace meetings where my daughter was giving her testimony about her unplanned pregnancy. My daughter wanted me there to undergird her with prayer, because she was nervous. She has been involved in this ministry for most of the five years of its existence. When Amy started thinking about writing this book, I encouraged her.

Welcome, Amy. What would you like for our readers to know about you personally?
At 19 years old, I had an unplanned pregnancy. I was completely freaked out and was so scared. I had no idea how to be a mom, and I could barely see past just telling my parents. I had convinced myself they were going to kick me out and I’d be homeless out on the streets. My boyfriend felt the same way. He was starting his 2nd year of college and knew his dad would cut him off financially and leave him out on his own. We figured we would need to drop out of school and our lives were over before it ever really began. We decided an abortion was the only way to fix our problem. We scheduled an appointment, and they did a sonogram and determined I was 6 weeks and 4 days pregnant. They started explaining the different methods of abortion and how it would all just go away. I was so emotionally distraught that day that I ended up passing out at the clinic and began hyperventilating. When I came to, I remember nurses fanning me and trying to give me some water.

A nurse helped me up and said, “You are not getting an abortion today. You can reschedule an appointment for another day but today is not your day. You are too upset.” 

That was the day that my life changed forever. We accepted this baby into our lives and moved forward with our future, hoping for the best. My parents didn’t kick me out like I thought that they would. My boyfriend’s parents didn't cut him off financially like he had convinced himself of. Our life wasn’t over. It was only beginning.

Seven and a half months later, I gave birth to a child destined for greatness. A son who has a plan and purpose for his life designed by an amazing God. I ended up marrying that cute boyfriend of mine, and we went on to have three more kids who will be world-changers. 

Reflecting back on that season of my life of having a crisis pregnancy, loneliness stands out to me the most. After I grew up in church and went to a Christian private school, my friends weren’t really sure how to hang out with me anymore. It wasn’t that they didn’t like me, it was more of just not knowing what to say. Do they congratulate me or do they offer apologies? They had no idea so they just stopped calling. Going to church with the evidence of my sin so obvious to everyone made me feel awkward as well as fellow church-goers ... so I stopped going. Shame and guilt overwhelmed me. I always felt like my pregnancy was like the elephant in the room. No one felt open and comfortable enough to talk about it but I just knew everyone was thinking about it. 

Fast forward to now. I want to make a difference and reach out to these girls who are walking out like I once did. I want to inspire churches to create a safe place for the girls to come where they won’t feel judged. I want these girls to connect and make new friends and not be lonely during their pregnancy. I want to honor their brave decision to choose LIFE and not death. Five years ago, a friend, Salina, and I started a program at Gateway Church in Southlake, Texas, called Embrace Grace.

Since then it has grown within the church as well as multiplied to churches in multiple states. We have now started our own non-profit organization, Embrace Grace, formed for the purpose of inspiring the church to provide emotional, practical and spiritual support for single young girls who find themselves with an unplanned pregnancy. The primary goal of Embrace Grace is to empower churches across the nation to be a safe and non-judging place for the girls to run to when they find out they are pregnant, instead of the last because of shame and guilt. We provide curriculum for the churches as well as cover the costs to organizations that may not be able to afford the expenses involved with helping young women with crisis pregnancies.

If the church, the body of Christ, would join together to support these girls who choose life, young moms will be more open to not aborting their babies. Whether they keep their baby or place for adoption, Embrace Grace is a support system for them as they begin their journey of being a young mother or blessing another family with their baby. Emotionally and spiritually healthy mommies, parent emotionally and spiritually healthy babies. Through the Embrace Grace program, lives are saved and generations are being changed.

Tell us about your family.
My husband, Ryan is my high-school sweetheart. I have four amazing children – one in high school, middle school, elementary, and one in diapers. They are ALL spread out. Jess my son is 14, Mackenzie is 11, Landry is 7 and Judah Brave is 2. They keep me busy!

Have you written other nonfiction books?
This is my first book I have ever written.

Do you have any other books in the works right now?
I just now started writing my second book so it’s still in the early stages. I’m so excited about it – it’s about adoption.

What kinds of hobbies and leisure activities do you enjoy?
My favorite place to be to get refreshed and revived is the beach! I get so many ideas and dream so many new dreams being right next to the water. I spend a lot of time visiting sweet babies in the hospital or hanging out with young, single mommas. I love uncovering talents and dreams inside other people and helping them lay out a vision for their future. Dreaming BIG is my favorite!

Why did you write the featured book?
Nearly half of pregnancies among American women are unintended, and about four in ten of these are terminated by abortion. (Guttmacher Institute, 8-11)

These statistics are staggering. Unplanned pregnancies are at a record high. With the pro-life movement rallying with full force to save as many babies as they can, as well as some states already implementing the 24-hour law, girls are taking a little more time to really process the choice they are about to make. And because of these recent changes, more babies are being saved.

In A Bump In Life: True Stories of Hope and Courage during an Unplanned Pregnancy, I have put together some incredible and inspiring stories of brave girls, who found themselves with an unplanned pregnancy, facing a life-altering choice. These are stories of how God turned what may have been the most desperate and hopeless situation they have ever been through into a beautiful blessing, changing their lives forever.

Just like the girls themselves, each story is unique. This book is a picture of hope for all girls going through an unplanned pregnancy or even family members affected by it. From a preacher’s kid who grew up in the spotlight struggling with guilt and shame on the platform, to the girl who could never break free from drugs and found out she was pregnant in a jail cell, to the rape victim who found herself pregnant—they all end with one thing in common: HOPE. Even though they were going through the most difficult trial in their life, God’s mercy and favor was abundant as they turned their hearts to Him, trusting in their Heavenly Father. What the enemy meant for harm, God changed into blessings—from ashes to beauty.

What do you want the reader to take away from the book?
If you are going through an unplanned pregnancy, I hope this book helps you realize you are not alone. I pray that anyone going through or connected with this situation will feel encouraged and move from feelings of loneliness, shame, and worry to the far more lasting joy that is God’s redemptive blessing of a child.

Where on the Internet can the readers find you?

Thank you, Amy. You have been an inspiration to me. I love to watch what the ministry is doing to help women and save babies.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
A Bump in Life - Christianbook.com
A Bump in Life: True Stories of Hope and Courage During an Unplanned Pregnancy - Amazon.com
A Bump in Life: True Stories of Hope and Courage During an Unplanned Pregnancy - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

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Anonymous said...

would love to win. Angela in Ky

Unknown said...

Thank you for featuring Amy. What a tremendous testimony for others to follow. The book is an inspiration to young women who find this is their story to. There is such a need for the Embrace Grace program in our world today. And young women need to know their are people and programs to support them. I will say a prayer for your endeavor to reach all who need it.
Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Quitman tx

Melanie Backus said...

Amy Ford sounds like an amazing person. The decision that she and her boyfriend finally came to was the best decision ever. She is the best possible person that can help a girl in the same situation that she was in years ago.
Embracing Grace, a beautiful title.

Melanie Backus, TX

Katie said...

Sounds wonderful! I love reading testimonies like this one. I'm from NC.

Katie G.

bonton said...

Thanks for your testimony, Amy! So inspiring - glad that you are using it to help others! It's amazing, & wonderful - how God is able to use our painful experiences, not only for our benefit, but - for that of others, also. There are SO many women that need to hear your testimony!

Would love to read "A Bump in Life" - thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!


Library Lady said...

I would love to win this book for my church library. I have several bumps on the road of my life lately.
Thanks for entering me in the giveaway.
Janet E.

Jackie Tessnair said...

I would love to wn this book.I would love for my daughter to read it.Thanks Jackie Tessnair from N.C.

Mary Preston said...

What an amazing post. Thank you for sharing. I'm looking forward to reading this book.

Mary P


mongupp said...

I love true stories, especially about saving babies.
Monica, Ontario

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me!!
Sharon Richmond Bryant

Jean said...

Thank you for this opportunity.

Jean Kropid
West Palm Beach, FL

rubynreba said...

A Bump in Life looks very good!
Beth from Iowa

Roanna said...

I would love to read this book! I am involved in the pro-life movement (did an internship with a national pro-life organization this past summer) and I have a passion for the pre-born.

Please enter me.

Roanna in Ohio