Sunday, March 15, 2015

Book Review - I'll Hold You In Heaven

Recently I picked up the book "I'll Hold You In Heaven" by Dr. Jack Hayford because the title and topic intrigued me and the eBook was only 99 cents.  It was a great read and worth more than that.

Dr. Hayford, in his compassionate, pastoral way, uses this book to give hope to those who have experienced a stillborn child, the death of a newly born child, a miscarriage, or an abortion.

Using scripture, he carefully demonstrates that the lost child is human and that the lost child has an eternal soul and, as a result, their death took them straight into heaven and the presence of God.  He also showed that God knew each of us before we were born and He has a plan and a purpose for each of our lives.

Psalm 139:13-16 (New Living Translation) says "13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. 15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. 16 You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed."

Jeremiah 1:5 (NLT) says “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.

He then shares that the only way that the parents of a child who has died will see them again is if they themselves also get to heaven.  And the only way for any of us to get to heaven is by accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and personal Savior.  He died to pay the penalty for my sins and for yours.

He shared one very touching story.  His church had started a ministry with a vision to provide pregnancy counseling without imposing a spiritual demand on the inquirer, but simply to discourage abortion by showing love and trusting God to work in their lives.  One expectant mother called, who had been abandoned by her boyfriend.  Over time, she decided against an abortion and she accepted Jesus as her Savior.  One Sunday morning, she came to dedicate her little girl to the Lord.  As they were preparing to take communion, Pastor Jack shared her story and said, "This is as dramatic a case as I think you'll ever see, in which brokenness is made whole through the love of Jesus.  This baby would have been broken in the womb, but she wasn't.  Because you prayed, you gave and you loved, she found new possibilities; and here in my arms is wholeness, not brokenness."

Jesus came to heal the broken-hearted and He still restores broken lives today!

That is the message we have to share with the people of Ukraine.  God has placed us here because He wants the good news of his redemptive purpose to be shared with people all around the world.  Our assignment is here.

Denise and I experienced a miscarriage before we adopted Laura.  Dr. Hayford's words spoke directly to me.  And because both of our girls are adopted, we are so glad that their birth parents chose life!

How about you?  Do you have a child in heaven as we do?  Will you join them there?  Do you know what God's purpose for your life is?

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