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I often hear and read that moms who conceive from sexual assault aren’t believed that they were raped when they decide to keep their baby. They are called names and are expected to share custody with the rapist. These facts are just the tip of the iceberg. Due to this unjust treatment, I am compelled to share this report. This paper was written for a sociology class. I could add so much more to the Biblical Principles section and the solutions, but I decided to leave it as is. My hope is that my readership will contribute helpful comments to this and share this blog to bring education to this issue. 

Part 1: Social Problem Described

As students of sociology, we have learned that all our small group interaction falls into microsociology, which will affect our sociological economy as a whole community. For this reason, it is important that as a society, we acknowledge that we are failing children born from sexual assault in many facets. This report will cover only one specific problem and a possible solution for the specific problem labeled. By allowing the alleged rapist father to have any parental right to the child conceived from his deviant and possible criminal (depending on conviction) behavior of sexual assault of the child’s mother, the system that should be protecting the child, is actually allowing the cycle of abuse and deviance to be passed to the offspring. For the purpose of this article, I will expound on four specific cycles of abuse and deviance and how presenting clear and convincing evidence should be enough to remove parental rights in cases of sexual assault paternity.

Cycles of abuse depend on how the pregnancy occurred. What type of sexual violence did the woman suffer that resulted in a child being born? The four types of sexual assault that I will expound on are incest/rape, intimate partner sexual assault, marital rape and sex-trafficking. Objectively, a woman who gets pregnant from these assaults do have the options of birthing and keeping the child, birthing and giving the child up for adoption, or obtaining an abortion. The presumption made for this article is that the mother is choosing to birth and keep the child. For each type of deviance, I will give a scenario that has been experience by a survivor child.

The deviance of incest is a criminal offence in the United States when it is prosecuted. Unfortunately, the perpetrator isn’t always caught and brought to justice. In cases like this, a girl gets caught in the cycle of incest/rape, can get pregnant and have a child. Once such case happened in 1977-1978. A young girl suffered incest/rape at the hands of her father. She got pregnant and had a baby girl. The social service system fails to help her, leaving her and her baby in the hands of her deviant/criminal father. The baby girl grew and was also raped by her biological rapist father. In this way, incest is perpetrated to the next generation. This first-hand account is my very own story. The ongoing incest within my family created macrosociological and microsociological problems within our family and community. Healing from the abuse and effects of being raised by my biological father have effected how I relate to my community as an adult. One report states, “There are some researchers (Matsakis, 1991) who report that children who have been sexually abused by a relative suffer from even more intense guilt and shame, low self-esteem, depression and self-destructive behavior than children who have been sexually assaulted by a stranger.” (Atwood, 2007) In my case, I was conceived from incest, raised by my biological rapist dad, who then molested and raped me for 10 years. The effects are long standing.

The second type of assault I will detail is intimate partner rape. This happens when the relationship is no long one of mutual love and consent. The female in the relationship was forcibly made to perform the sex act. This lead to conception. Even in cases where the biological father is charged in the rape, the family courts will still give him parental rights. This action places the child conceived from his heinous and criminal act, in an unsafe environment. There are cases where the child has then been either physically and/or sexually abused by the rapist father. There is a better way to protect the child, which I will explain later in this report.

Marital rape is very close to intimate partner rape, but it can be harder to fight because of the legality of the marriage contract. Once the woman is able to safely get away from the physical and sexual abuse, including rape, often based on the 14thAmendment of the Constitution, family court judges will give the alleged rapist father rights to the child conceived from his rape of his now estranged wife. In this case, the child is a boy. He spends weekends with is abusive father. He is learning these deviant and socially unacceptable behaviors. It sets him up for a life of poverty and possible issues with the law just like his biological father. His rapist father having parental rights after committing sexual assault against his wife isn’t what is best for the young boy or his immediate community.

Finally, let’s take a serious look at what happens when a child is raised by his or her rapist father who is a sex-trafficker. This is a very closed system. If the child hasn’t been aborted, then the child is considered an addition to the “family.” If the child is a girl, she will be groomed and trained to be sold. The younger she is sold the more money her rapist father will get. He may even have a go first in her training. If the child is a boy, he will be trained by his biological father to sell women, to objectify women and to be a pimp just like his rapist father. The cycle of abuse and deviance continues. Society is broken in this crucial area for another generation because rapist fathers get parental rights. What can be done?

The main solution to the social problem of alleged rapist fathers having parental rights is to adopt a method of allowing the mothers of the child to present before the courts a clear and convincing standard of evidence, showing that she was raped. Since the issue of removing parental rights isn’t a criminal matter, the need to have findings “beyond a reasonable doubt” isn’t needed. An effective means to remove parental rights from the accused father is to use the less stringent means stated above. In a 2014 journal article, the author explains, “By creating a presumption rather than a strict requirement, a judicial hearing will still be required to determine if said presumption applies in specific factual situations. These hearings create an accessible forum for mothers to prove why the rights of the rapist should be terminated and, at the same time, protect the due process rights of all parties.” (Stevens, 2014) (quote from Hasting Law Journal Page 896) This solution would provide mothers a viable way to protect their child born from the violence committed against them.

As a social problem, it may seem hopeless that rapist fathers have access to the children that they conceive through their deviant and criminal acts. Often survivors would agree with this sentiment, however this problem doesn’t end with how the community and law can help. We are each called to act as an individual to be a light in the world. This issue affects each and every one of us.

Part 2: Biblical Principles to Social Problem Defined

As Christians, we look into social problems and feel overwhelmed by the immensity of the issue in front of us. We forget that we have the Gospel to offer to the sin problems surrounding us. How do we help where alleged rapist fathers are gaining parental rights to their biological children? Our hearts should be grieved for the children and mothers, angered at the injustice as we seek out what Christ Jesus would have us do to bring about change. The Lord Jesus grieved when He saw the brokenness in Jerusalem. Luke 19:41 says, “And when He drew near and saw the city, he wept over it,” First, I believe that our hearts must break over the injustice that is happening to these children.

We shouldn’t stay in a broken state over the problem. It should move us to action. God’s Word gives us clear direction on how to help these children. Let’s start by being their voice. The children born from sexual assault are stigmatized and discriminated against. Their very lives have been devalued. They need God-fearing men and women to speak up for them. Most children conceived in sexual assault are born to mothers who do not have the financial means to fight legal battles beyond what legal aid they receive. Titus 3:14 tell us to devote ourselves to good works especially in cases of urgent need and to not be unfruitful. How much more urgent of a need is there than to protect a child from being influenced by his/her rapist father? This may seem like an impossible task, but Ephesians 6:11 reminds us to put on the full armor of God to stand against the devil. Within the context of that passage, we are told that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood.

Lastly, I want to focus on what specifically Godly men can do to battle this social problem. Until laws are changed, children will be placed into custody agreements with their rapist fathers. I want to encourage God-fearing men to challenge the men around them to fear and honor God! Preach the Gospel message that Christ Jesus came to earth, lived a sinless life, died a cursed death on the cross, was buried three days and rose victoriously from death to prove that He is who He said He was. His is God, our Judge and Advocate. He is our Redeemer. I know this may sound like preaching, but the only way to save the children being influenced by these fathers is to raise those men up! Jesus Christ is the only way to bring change to a man’s heart. Also, in Psalm 82:3-4, we are told,

“Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

Men of God, lead out in this call! Show these children what the heart of Father God looks like!

Bibliography

Atwood, J. D. (2007). When love hurts: Preadolescent girls’ reports of incest. The American Journal of Family Therapy, 35(4), 287-313. doi:10.1080/01926180701389644
González-López, G. (2015). Family secrets stories of incest and sexual violence in Mexico. New York: New York University Press.
Reddington, F. P. (2009). Sexual assault: the victims, the perpetrators and the criminal justice system. Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press.
Stevens, M. E. H. (2014). Rape-related pregnancies: The need to create stronger protections for the victim-mother and child. Hastings Law Journal, 65(3), 865.

 

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My Rapist Father is My Pimp?

Does this title shock you? Are you rattled that someone would be bold enough to write such a thing?

Unfortunately, waking up to your rapist father also raping and pimping you out is a very real horror for untold children and young girls in our country.

I am a person conceived in incest/rape and a woman who has survived sexual assault at the hands of my biological father, step-father and other men for 16 years and several stand-alone rapes in my adult years. From all the years of sexual assaults, I know of at least two pregnancies as a result. Sadly, I lost both to miscarriage. I have spent the last four and a half years of my life researching in detail the plight of moms who get pregnant from sexual assault and the people (from the preborn to those alive today) who were conceived from sexual assault. Children conceived from sex-slavery/trafficking fall into this category.

While I knew about sex-slavery and trafficking, it didn’t hit mean that the women trapped in this life would full under sexual assault conception until I began to dig deeper into my own story. As I realized that had I not been rescued by my church pastor in my sixteenth year of life, my stepfather would have trafficked me. He had introduced me to other men who like to explore me without crossing a certain line.

I was told just how beautiful and desirable I was.  Men would look on me as though they owned my body. I didn’t have a choice to say NO! I was told that I brought it on myself.

As I realized the implications of what would have happened if I had indeed been forced to have sex with these men, I could have gotten pregnant. It was then that the entire world of prostitution and sex trafficking changed for me.

While I have not actually been pimped out to other men by my rapists and abusers, I know what it is like to have my biological rapist father take what he wants from me. Despair and hopelessness filled my soul because for a time, it seemed that no matter where I turned, no one saw me! No one saw the blood running from my wounds. Family didn’t see it. “Friends” didn’t see it. There was no way out!

The GOOD CHRISTIANS looked the other way and said that I asked for it!

Do you realize how many young women in the trafficking industry are raped by the fathers that raped and impregnated their mothers?

They are being raped and pimped out by their biological fathers! Look at the sweet face of the baby girl in the picture above. She was already violated at that age by her rapist father! LET THAT SINK IN! Who will speak for her?

I am the little babe in the picture above. My innocence taken at nine months by my biological father who raped his teen daughter. He took me and abused and raped me until I was ten years old. I will be the voice that no one was for me and the voice of so many like me.

 Each of our cities and towns cry with the voices of the children and young ladies being raised by their rapist fathers who are now repeating the same horrid crimes and selling them for profit. Are your eyes and ears open? Can you see the trail of blood and tears? These ladies shop with us in the convenience stores, pass us with their heads down, yet are praying that we see their cries for help. So often we look right passed them.

I write this blog because I know that Christ Jesus loves each of these women! His heart aches for them. It is angered at the horrors that they live in each moment that they breathe. His tears fall for them when we look away. WILL YOU CONTINUE TO LOOK AWAY? WILL YOU REMAIN SILENT? We are called to speak up for those that do not have a voice! WILL YOU BE THAT VOICE? I, ROWENA ABIGAIL SLUSSER, WILL BE A VOICE!  

This issue can seem so overwhelming and heartbreaking. It can seem that there is no way to overcome such evil, but God’s word tells us that Christ in us is Greater that the evil one in the world! We fight in the Power of Christ Jesus. So, pick up your Sword and take your stand.

For more information on my organization, please visit http://www.facebook.com/treasureofvirtue

For an organization that fights against sex-trafficking, please visit http://www.jarsofhope.love

 

 

 

 

 

Conceived in Rape-Incest and Pregnant by Rape Twice

I am sharing my story for every girl who lives in silence, and for every person to understand that all life has value and is worthy of protection.

I was conceived in father/daughter rape-incest. My  biological mother was molested by her father throughout her childhood and was 15 when I was born. She was offered an abortion by a doctor who had asked her if she had been a “bad girl,” to which she responded that she had not, because she really had no understanding of what he father had been doing to her. This doctor completely failed to help her break free from the molestation, incest and rape. In fact, Child Protective Services also failed to protect my mom, even though they were called by the school authorities, and while at school my mom told them what was happening. Nevertheless, they ultimately sent her home to be abused for several more years. Despite the pressure to abort, once my mom knew she was pregnant, she understood that a life was growing inside of her which she could not kill, and so, she refused the abortion and chose to bring me to birth.

When I was born, she said she loved me like a baby doll, but did not know how to care for me. As a result, her parents, Ruben and Rosa, raised me as their own until I was around 4 years old. At that time, she told me that she was my mom. Since I didn’t believe her, I asked Ruben and Rosa if this was true, and they confirmed for me that it was indeed true — they said that what birth-mom said was correct and that she really was my mom. I remember feeling confused, and to help myself deal with the confusion, I would call Rosa mom or mamma, and my birth-mom, I would call Becky or mother. I remember feeling weird in public because Becca was my sister to the public. Overall, I still saw Becca as my sister and friend, even though I knew she was my mom. (During this period of time from ages 0 until I was 10 years old, I knew my birth-mom and her siblings as my siblings. I grew to love them as such. Even after I found out the truth, I still loved these people as my siblings, except my birthmom.)

My earliest memory of abuse is as a baby. My father, Ruben, started to physically and sexually abuse me from around 1 year of age until I was 10 years old. In once instance, my grandmother Rosa even caught him and threatened to divorce him if he ever did it again, but I was too scared to tell her what was happening. I knew what he was doing was bad, though I didn’t know the name for it. I knew that he was bothering me and I didn’t like it. He was a big man (350+ lbs) and he was violent, so I was terrified of him. I felt so dirty, defiled and ashamed. There are so many memories of the sexual abuse and a great deal of pain in recounting any of them.

My young mom did her best to protect me. One of my memories of her protecting me was around the age 8 or 9. My father was upset with me about not doing a chore right, so my mom (Becca) told me to hide under the sink and be real quiet. I did, but felt guilty because I knew what he would do to her. Sure enough, he gave her my beating. I could hear it and see from a small hole. Other times, she would ask me if he was “bothering” me. I know I would tell her both no and yes. She would ask me if I would want to go or stay if she ever left, and I would tell her that I definitely wanted her to go! Finally, on November 16, 1988, she secretly took me out of school with the help of our oldest sister, Rachel. My mom and I ran away with family friends to Plainview, TX, and it was about 7 years before I saw my father or my grandmother again.

Within a couple of months after moving, my mom told me the truth – that my father had sexually abused her as well, and that I was a result of that abuse. It didn’t shock me because I had a feeling he had been doing the same things to her, but I definitely felt confused, gross, ashamed, and worthless, and wondered how my mother could really love me.

Plainview was supposed to be a new start, but unfortunately, we ended up in an abusive cycle again. My mom met my step-father at church, and he was a charmer. He swept my mom off her feet. I don’t remember exactly how I felt about him, but I do know that I wasn’t happy that he was taking my mom away. Shortly after my 11th birthday, he talked my mom into letting me spend the night with him and his girls, and she took his youngest son. That night, my future step-father sexually abused me. I tried to tell my mom, but the church we were going to gave her bad advice, and they blamed me. After that, I felt alone and trapped as the abuse continued over the next five years.

At age 13, I became pregnant by my step-father, though hadn’t realized at the time that I was actually pregnant because I didn’t understand what was going on with my body, and now that I’ve experienced four miscarriages in my life, I realize that I was pregnant by him, ending sadly in miscarrying the baby. He had told me that if I ever got pregnant, he would force me to have an abortion.

Until after my sixteenth birthday, I was trapped in a very destructive relationship with my step-father. He was completely warped and told me strange things such as that he wanted to marry me and wanted me to raise my younger sisters and brother. I prayed for a way out! I thought that I would suffocate from the inside and out. My way out was close, though I didn’t know that at the time.

My family started going to a new church. This church would be the path to freedom that God used to end the abuse. One day, in June of 1994, my mom walked in on my step-father raping me. The feeling of doom was so thick, I was smothered by it. I was sure that my mom was going to send me away, but the next day, she went to our pastor and told him what happened. This time, the pastor called the police. Finally, my cage door was opened!

He was charged and arrested, my step-father and mother got a divorce, the grand jury indicted him, but then the prosecutor cut a plea bargain, so he spent 10 years in prison. Although some would call this justice, I remember feeling at the time very upset that I did not have my say in Court and I wanted my voice to be heard. Finally after all of these years, I have the opportunity to be heard!

I have survived sexual assault and rape by my biological father, uncle, half-brother, step-father and other men. Healing started to happen as I sought out counseling. At the age of 19, I met my future husband. He was the first man who treated me with respect and dignity. We dated for two years before getting married in October of 1999, and he’s been my biggest supporter.

While my husband was away for training with the United States Navy, when I was 22 years old, I was raped by a stranger in a home invasion while I was sleeping. I did everything “right” – I went to the hospital where we reported it to the police, and I had a rape kit done. I was offered the Morning After pill, but I declined because I knew the risks involved. The perpetrator was never caught. My husband came home within 48 hours of the rape, and we moved to a new location for obvious reasons.

About a month later, I had a positive home pregnancy test. I was scared and alone. My husband was back at Naval Training again. I went to a pregnancy clinic, not knowing the difference between a pro-life pregnancy resource and an abortion-friendly clinic which encourages and refers out for abortions. At this clinic, I was strongly encouraged to have an abortion — particularly because I was pregnant by rape. I was completely shocked and appalled! I told them I did not want an abortion, and I promptly left. I told my husband that I was pregnant, and I asked him if he would raise the child with me. I was so scared that he might say no! He told me that just as I was a miracle, this child is also a miracle, and that he would love the child like his own. In that moment, I felt secure and protected, but at the same time, I felt unworthy of such unconditional love. Within another month, I began to bleed, and I either miscarried or had a false positive pregnancy test. I had a accepted the fact that I was going to have a baby, and felt sad realizing that the baby’s life was gone. In the years since, I have grieved the life of this child and gave the baby a name: Delaiah Rose.

I have had five miscarriages and the doctors told me that it was my genetic makeup due to my conception which makes me more susceptible to miscarriages. Gratefully, my husband and I have two healthy children together. My path of healing has taken so much hard work, but it has been worth it — God has been so gracious to me! I reconciled with my biological father before he died and forgave him. Working with my mom to rebuild a broken and confused relationship is a process and ongoing. I am a Christian and find my Hope in Jesus Christ. I have come to a place of peace about my conception and I can now voice my deep found identity in the One who created me.

I have now shared my story as person who was conceived in incest/rape to educate the public about the my people group, sharing how moms and children affected by sexual assault conception need love and support. I am also a sexual assault survivor advocate and speaker with church groups, youth groups, college groups, in the media and testifying before the state Legislature. I desire to speak to the value of life — even the lives of those who, like me, were conceived in incest and/or rape. As I have come to see my life as a precious gift given to me, I want the unborn lives of all to be protected from abortion, and I want every child to be protected from sexual assault.

I recently celebrated 18 years of marriage with my husband Casey. We have two beautiful children — a son and a daughter. My family and I attend a local Baptist church near Lynchburg, VA. I attend Liberty University. I hope to become a professional Christian/Biblical counselor specializing in sexual assault conception. I have started an organization called Treasure of Virtue (ToV). ToV was created to bring resources together for women who conceive from sexual assault and the children who were conceived in sexual assault. I know God is calling me to use my story to offer hope and healing to others, and to show His goodness in my life! If you would like me to speak at your event or are looking for more information, you can contact me at treasureofvirtue@gmail.com. Also visit, like and share my Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/treasureofvirtue

The Exception…Could It Be Me?

I woke up this morning, on my 14,453rd day of life. The idea that I was unplanned and conceived in incestuous rape, floods my thoughts today. Who wanted me? My mom didn’t even know she was pregnant with me. My father may have wanted me, but why would he? He raped is daughter and that is why I am here. He should have been my grandfather. Most of my biological family on my father’s side wishes I would just go away. In the world’s “tolerant ” eyes, I am a stain in their evolutionary chain. In the eyes of some “Christian pro-lifers,” I am demon spawn, or evil offspring, a bastard or anything but a person created in God’s image. Right now the US House passed a 20 Week Abortion Ban which would ban late-term abortion. This bill, which if passed by Congress and signed by the President, would save unborn babies’ lives, excludes the lives of the  unborn babies conceived in rape, incest, or any other sexual assault that could fall under those two catagories.

Pro-lifers who say that EVERY life matters but support a bill that excludes the lives conceived in a horrid and tortuous way are acting in a hypocritical nature. Not that I am not calling pro-lifers hypocrites, but the belief that save some as long as they are not the rape/incest conceived is hypocritical. Supporting an abortion ban with any exception is the easy way. Matthew 7:12-14, “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”

Ask yourself, “Would I want to be the exception?” Christian pro-lifers should give thanks  that the God who chose them didn’t put stipulation on their lives. He sent His son to die for them; each “Christian pro-lifer” by name. As Christians, we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the principalities and powers in this evil age. (Eph. 6:12) Again, while humans are writing and voting on this ban and others like it, my battle isn’t against flesh and blood or their blinded bias. My battle is a spiritual one. God and Him Alone is the giver of life.Any law that give the okay to murder one class of unborn children is not from God!

This bill and those like its are “feel good” bills. Pro-lifers can say that they supported something good. Imagine for a moment if God told Moses that only the Jews who were between the ages of 20 and 35 were to be rescued from Egypt! How different the story of the Exodus would be. What if Jesus said Go into only three nations and preach the Gospel. Would you be saved? What if on the cross, Jesus said that his death would only save the people with blue eyes? Would you be saved? That is what exceptions are! Can you not see that exceptions for rape, incest and sexual abuse conceived babies is doing what I described above?

We, as Christian Pro-lifers should not SETTLE for a ban with exception. Lawlessness and murder are the hallmarks that clearly define abortion, but is having a ban with exceptions allowing that lawlessness and murder to be perpetrated towards an entire demographic of people really showing the heart of Creator God? NO! NO! NO! Why are some of us supporting a bill that excludes so many lives?

So back to my story. Why would I care if I am valued? Because I am created in the image of God! I had a friend, who was conceived in rape, tell me that truly the only value at the start of our lives came from God. As I thought about what she said, I could identify. Only God had a plan for me.

Psalm 139:13-16 says, “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.”

Ephesians 1:4-5 reminds me that he predestined me for adoption. Ephesians 1:4-5,”even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,” Ephesians 2:10, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” This verse reminds me that I have been called to good works, which were prepared before hand for me. What can I take away from these verses? God knew me, knew how I would be conceived, knew that I would not be valued in this world. BUT He valued me, my life and gave my life meaning and a calling! This is why I stand and fight for the lives of babies conceived in rape, incest or sexual abuse.

Right now, God is knitting together a baby boy and/or girl. He is giving them distinct personalities, eye colors, life-callings and purposes. And right now, if this bill passed, these babies would be on the chopping block. Why? Because they were conceived in incest, rape or sexual abuse. This “ban” would make it legal to torture them in the womb. They would die violent and painful deaths. And think of their moms! Their moms are terrified and feel trapped. Many women are forced by their perpetrator to have an abortion. Likewise, families (even Christian families) pressure and shame women into having an abortion. This ban doesn’t protect the most vulnerable of women; instead it harms and victimizes them further. This ban is anti-woman!!!!!

I want to wrap up by telling you where I am today. By God’s grace and my mom telling the doctor “NO” to the abortion offered to her, I am now married 18 years and have two children. I share my story of how I have and am overcoming 16 years of incestuous rape, sexual assault and various other forms of abuse. Thankfully, I survived being raped by a stranger at age 22. My life is valued by my beloved husband, my son, and my daughter. I have other biological family members who would like for me and my story to disappear because I choose to stand for TRUTH! My church family also supports and values my life and those like me.

While I am aware that this bill will probably continue on with the rape exception, I must stand for the lives of the unborn left on the alter of politics. Jesus tells us in John 13:34-35, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” Is a ban on abortion with a rape exception truly loving one another? Truly? Is this exception not a plot written by man? Proverbs 14:12 says, “There is a way that seems right to a man,
but its end is the way to death.” Also Proverbs 14:15-16 tells us, “The simple believes everything,
but the prudent gives thought to his steps. One who is wise is cautious and turns away from evil, but a fool is reckless and careless.”

I stand and speak for All unborn lives for the Glory of God. All this is pointless if it only brings glory to me or any other person. Jesus died and saved me. He chose me to glorify Him! To Jesus Christ only be the Glory. I will end with Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

I have already shared this on Facebook as a note, but I wanted it on my blog as well. It is important that the message that every life, no matter how it was conceived be fought for and valued. To all my readership, please like and share this on Facebook and Twitter. Thank you.

Have you every rested your head on your hand and heard your pulse? It is amazing to me to hear my pulse. I was reminded just how precious each heartbeat is. Take a moment, and join me as I explain. Earlier this week, I received a very hateful email in response to my story that has been featured on LifeSiteNew.com. The writer was venomous with her words. I have been encouraged to write a response to this email. Following some time of prayer and mediating on what the Lord wanted me to do, I have decided that for now, I want to address one sentence in the email.
The writer told me the following, “I would of aborted you instantly and if I was you, I would of prayed to have been aborted.” Let me tell you, I am a strong Christian. I know that I am loved and that Christ loved me so much He died for me, but reading those words hurt. More than I can put into words. To be told that she would have ABORTED me is telling me that she would have MURDERED me. To tell me that if she were me, she would have PRAYED to be ABORTED is to tell me that I should have PRAYED to be MURDERED! I am being told that my life is of no value even to myself! I had to remind myself that this writer must have much pain to spew such hate and that Satan must be really unhappy with what God is doing in my life to send his fiery darts at me. I had to remind myself that in Ephesians 2:10, I am told, ‘For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.’ (Read the entire chapter of Ephesians 2. It is so encouraging.)
I initially just tossed the email into the trash, but thought better of it. I shared the entire email with my closest family and friends to pray for me and with me. These type of emails are an attack. It opens several different windows into the hearts of those who call themselves “pro-choice” or ‘pro-abortion”. For this woman, I believe there was a wound, either for her or for someone she knew. Often when we are wounded, we speak from that pain. When we encounter this type of reaction, we must remember James 1:19-21-”Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.” (Bold emphasis mine) Before we respond, we must seek what the Holy Spirit wants us to see and say.
My initial response was to throw away the attack. Harden my heart so that I would not get hurt by it. This would give the enemy victory. It would silence me. Instead, I will be quick to hear. I will hear the cry of the heart of a broken woman. Broken by life. So broken in fact, that she would prefer death of a life than to give life. I will hear the scream for love. Love? Yes, love! She may not realize it, but she desperately needs love, especially the love of ONE who can make her whole. We must show love and compassion to those who attack us. Jesus gave a beautiful example of this love and compassion on the cross in Luke 23:34a, “And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” This doesn’t excuse the behavior, but opens the door for repentance. As we are quick to hear, we leave room for a change of heart.
Next, we are instructed to be slow to speak. What does this mean in the context of the line from the email that I referenced above? When I read the words that she would have murdered me through abortion, and that she thinks that I should have wanted to be murdered through abortion, I want to argue with her about the insanity of her thoughts. I mean, any sane person wouldn’t say or write those words to another person! Often, when presented with untruth or hurtful comments, we feel the need to defend ourselves or our beliefs. However, if we take a moment to stop and pray, the Holy Spirit will give us the right words to say or not say. This woman has heard talking points. I will most likely not respond directly to her. I will pray for her. I will not right a hateful post about a hateful woman. Instead, I will enlighten my readership on how to glorify Christ in fighting the good fight in standing up for those lives affected by sexual assault conception.
After prayer and a time to cool down, I will speak loudly to proclaim God’s word over the lie that my life should have been murdered. We are told in Psalm 139:13-16, “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.” In Ephesians 1:4-5, we are told, that if we are believers in Christ, the following is the truth, “even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will.”
Out of the three commands in James 1:19, slow to anger is the last last listed, but I think that it is the hardest to overcome. Is it wrong to get angry? No, I do not believe it is. The Bible tells us to be angry and not sin and to not give opportunity to the devil. (Ephesians 4:26-27) The command in James 1:19 is to be slow to anger. Why do you think that is? I think it is because often when we are angry, we cannot do what James 1:20-21 tells us, “for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.” Ungodly anger leads to filth and wickedness. That is what led to the vile words within the email that was sent to me. For this reason, I must not respond with anger.
Do not misunderstand me. I do feel anger! How dare someone tell me that I should have been murdered! However, being slow to anger, I respond with gentleness and self-control, allowing the Holy Spirit to temper my thoughts and words. Through these actions, I hope to allow the Lord to work on my behalf. Through this process, I am able to express my thoughts and feelings on how this email has affected me. I can then explain how I am able to handle it.
If I had just trashed the email, I would have missed out on an opportunity to write about this experience. Every single circumstance is an open door to share what Christ is doing in my life. At the start of this blog, it was to be a few sentences long for a Facebook page post. As you can see, God had other ideas. I have been working long and hard behind the scenes this last year with Treasure of Virtue. Not much has happened on the Facebook page or in organization as a whole. You may be asking why I am bring this up in a blog about an vile email. The point is that earlier this year, I announced that I came up with a slogan for Treasure of Virtue: Every Heartbeat is a Treasure. By this woman attacking my very life, she highlighted the very reason that Treasure of Virtue exist.
As I continue to move forward, I know that hate mail will come reminding me that there are those who are hurt and angry. Those who believe that abortion in the case of sexual assault pregnancies will spew venomous world like those quoted above, but as long as I remember James 1:19-21, I will be able to speak the truth with confidence and love. I will be able to hear my heartbeat and know that Every Heartbeat is a Treasure.

Heart thoughts of a Redeemed Survivor

I want to share a page from my journal. For the past three weeks, I have been on a roller coaster of emotions. I faced a deep-rooted fear that was planted when I was around 4 years old. In the process of working through my healing, I had another blow that involved my rapist of 5 to 6 years. I know that the talk of rape and its effects is very uncomfortable for most people, but it is a very real horror with real, long lasting consequences. For the first time in 22 years, I may see a few of my rapist children. Even writing those words sends shivers down my spine and causes my stomach to turn. I share this because it occurred to me that there are other survivors of long-term and short-term rape/sexual assault who might have or will struggle with this very issue. Often, we are told that we are just emotional or taking things to personally. Well, I will tell you that it is very personal. So please read and share:

How one man can cause such deep pain and rifts breaks my heart. It has been 22 years since he got caught in his crime. His crimes against me went on for about 6 years. His crimes grossly affected me, but they also affected my loved ones. Sitting here, I have new realizations of how Christ protected me from a certain future. I am in anguish over the place I am in. My heart cries out words I can’t write because they are to graphic to repeat. I long to be understood but only He really knows. I forgive! I forgive! But the pain is real. The struggle is real! The wounds are real. The story isn’t fiction; it happened over and over, day and night. By His stripes, with His nail-scarred hands, beneath His blood, I am overcoming, but the pain, the choices I face, the choosing to feel! It is real!!! Sorrow, horror, anger, heartache, distress, pain: they are real for a crimes committed against me over and over again. I rest in His peace but must sit here in tears as He continues yet another open heart surgery on His redeemed daughter. No pain-numbing meds for me. I must face this. I must make this choice for my good and my children’s good. He is for me. He is protecting me. I only need His validation. He is with me. Release everyone else, their thoughts and choices and cling to Him for dear life! He is the only one who can know intimately the crimes that caused this heart attack.

~ The Heart Cries of His Redeemed Daughter

Thank you for sharing in my healing. Encourage the survivors in you life.

You Want Me To Forgive Who?

This is a copy of the speech I gave yesterday at The Courage Conference. I hope it is a blessing to those who read it. 
Good Afternoon. My name is Rowena. It is a privilege to be here today. Let us begin with prayer.
I would like to start with a story of a young man, sentenced for crimes he
didn’t commit. Here is a list of his perpetrators:
A.) A friend betrayed him
B.) The rest of his friends abandoned him.
C.) Religious and Community leaders conspire against him to murder him.
D.) Government officials use the legal system to sentence him to death, knowing he was innocent.
What did man say about forgiveness?

As we continue our time together, we will explore how forgiveness is the day to freedom from the strongholds that bind us tightly. We will discover the Author of Forgiveness and His commands to follow in His footsteps.

You might be wondering if I know what its is like to be told the I must forgive. My life story is one of redemption and forgiveness. Let me share with you parts of my story. I will start with a list of sinful actions that I have had to ask forgiveness, followed by a list of sins committed against me.
Here is the list of my sinful actions for which I have had to confess and ask to be forgiven of:
>Being a sinner in general. My salvation was at age 5.
>Hating my dad for abusing me.
>Hating my childhood mom because she didn’t protect me.
>Hating my real mom because she didn’t believe or protect me.
>Hating my step-father because he raped me.
>Being unfaithful to my husband by having sexual conversations with
another man online.
>Giving in to same-sex attraction desires by participating in inappropriate
behavior with other women while being married to my husband.
>Threatening to leave my husband and children in anger.

Here is a list of the sinful actions of others against me which I have extended forgiveness:
>The first 10 years of my life consisted of sexual abuse by my dad, older brother and uncle.
>At age 4, it was revealed that my older sister was actually my mom.
>At age 10, I was told the truth of my dad also being my
grandfather because he raped his daughter and got her pregnant.
>My dad was a pastor of a church.
>When I was 10, we escape my dad’s grip and move to a small town in
West Texas.
>During ages of 10 and 11, sexual abuse started by my future step-father.
>The pastor of the church we were going to, blamed me for my future
step-father molesting me, saying that I had a demon that made men
molest me.
>Molestation turns to rape and all types of sexual assaults at the hands of
of my step-father from ages 10-16.
>Raped at age 20 by a stranger, in my home, while my husband away for
military training.
>After my 30th birthday, I found out that my husband struggled with porn
addiction.
This list isn’t complete, but it give you a glimpse of the path of forgiveness in my life.

I share this list with you to give you a foundation to help answer the question, “You want me to forgive ‘Who’?”.

I will demonstrate four key points on forgiveness. The are:.
1. How Christ extends forgiveness on the cross and commands us to forgive too.
2.What forgiveness is not and what it is.
3. Name the “Who” (and “What”)
4. Practical way to work through forgiveness (Pray, forgive, bless)

To move forward, let’s start wth the young man in the introduction.
Main Point 1. He had plenty of wounds inflicted on Him. Have you guessed who this person is? It is our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Here are verses from the Bible about forgiveness:
A. Mark 11:25
And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.
B. Matthew 6:14-15
14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, 15 but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
These verses are commands from Jesus. He commanded forgiveness, but do we
see Him forgive? YES!!! Let us look at the Scriptures. Luke 23:33-35 says,
“33 And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. 34 And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”[a] And they cast lots to divide his garments. 35 And the people stood by, watching, but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!”
He forgave them in the middle of causing him harm.

Now that we have examined Christ forgiveness and His command to forgive…

Main Point 2. Let us dig deeper into what forgiveness is not and what it is
A. Forgiveness isn’t saying that sin is okay or allowing it to continue.
Jesus died for the forgiveness of sin, so the sin did happen and was wrong. It was so wrong, that Jesus shed His blood for it on the cross. Ephesians 1:7 says, “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace,” Other verses that speak to Christ forgiveness through the shedding of His blood are Hebrews 9:22 and 1Peter 3:18a.
Forgiveness comes after repentance. Repentance is “turning from sin.” Mark 1:4-“John appeared, baptizing in the wilderness and proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.”
B. Forgiveness isn’t waiting to receive an apology. Refer to Luke 23:33-35 and
Jesus forgave having no apology extended to Him.
C. Forgiveness is not forgetting.
example: How many of you have heard “Forgive and forget!”? I have
heard this from family members who harmed me. I have forgiven them,
but I cannot forget.
D. Forgiving doesn’t stop the pain.
example: I can tell you that the pain of my sexual assaults is very real.
Feeling pain from your memories doesn’t mean that you haven’t forgiven. I will discuss forgiveness and painful memories in a session tomorrow.
E. Forgiveness isn’t trusting again quickly or reconciliation.
example 1: I forgave my father for sexually abusing me. Should I let him
meet my children and hug them? NO WAY!! There is not trust there.
example 2: My older brother molested me. I have forgiven him, but
do I have to have a trusting relationship with him? Nope. I can be kind
and love him with the love of Christ and my relationship ends there.
F. Forgiveness and Justice
1. In talking about forgiveness, justice is not neglected. Although I
forgave my abusers and rapists, I pressed charges on them and
pursued justice through the legal system.
2. Ultimately, justice will come through Christ Jesus. The person
who you forgive will either come to faith in Christ and justice will
be met at the cross of calvary, or they will receive the ultimate justice
in eternal separation from God in hell for being unrepentant.
G. Forgiveness is an ongoing event.
1. Sometimes you forgive someone and they keep on sinning, so you
continue to forgive. (Remember Jesus said seventy times seven.) Now if
you or your loved ones are in danger, remove yourself(s) from danger.
2. Other times, you forgive a person or persons, but then memories or
triggers happen. Forgiveness may be needed again to block bitterness
from taking root.
example: My husband puts is hand on my knee when he is driving.
All of a sudden I remember my step-father hurting me. I quickly
pray a prayer to forgive him in that memory. I release him to God
and pray for his salvation.

Main Point 3. Where are you on the path of forgiveness?
A. New-never herd about forgiveness before.
B. Informed-You have heard about forgiveness but haven’t
put it into action
C. Starting to apply the knowledge of forgiveness to your life.
D. Been forgiven and following Christ command to forgive.
E. Walking in freedom.

Main Point 4. Name the “Who.” (and “What”)
A. As you have listened to me talk, “who” came to mind?
B. What was the circumstance?
example: I choose to forgive my dad for raping my mom and getting her
pregnant with me, for causing me to have a huge hole in my heart,
and for sexually abusing me too. I pray that he finds faith in you,
Jesus, for his salvation.

Thank you so much for your attention.
I know that this topic has been intense and painful for many of you. My heart is with you. I love you and have prayed for each of you as I prepared to speak on this topic. I can attest to the fruitfulness of forgiveness. I have been forgiven by God and my significant others for many things. It is freeing to have the debt for those wrongdoings forgiven. Because I have experience forgiveness, I know that my key points are a way of working through forgiving others. Again, these points are : 1.) Christ forgave and commands us to forgive like He did. 2.) What forgiveness is not and what its is. 3.)Where are you on the path of forgiveness? and finally, 4.) Name the “who.” (and “what).

I hope that this session has been a benefit to you on your journey with Christ. Thank you for taking the time to attend this session. If you would like more information on my story or have questions about forgiveness, I will be available after this session. You can also email me at treasureofviritue@icloud.com. More of my info is on the slide above.
I pray the peace Christ dwell with you.