Thursday, March 12, 2020

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made and That's a Fact!

Hello out there - I hope you're all doing well! I thought it was time to share the
following information again. I hope that you will share it also!

Did you know…that at the moment of conception when we were smaller than
a grain of sugar this is what happens!?!

Day 1: Fertilization
The sperm joins with the egg to form one cell. This single cell contains the

complex genetic makeup for every detail of a new human being. It has already
been determined if the baby is going to be a boy or a girl, a son or a daughter!
From that moment of conception the color of the baby’s hair and eyes,
their skin tone, and their height is set.
After fertilization, nothing new is added but oxygen, nutrition, and time!
Isn’t that amazing?!

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
before you were born I set you apart;
I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.    
                                  - Jeremiah 1:5
"Truly you have formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother's womb. I give
you thanks that I am fearfully, wonderfully made; wonderful are your works.
My soul also you knew full well; nor was my frame unknown to you when I was made in secret,
when I was fashioned in the depths of the earth.”  Psalm 139:13-15

1st Month (1-4 Weeks)
Did you know that a developing baby's heart begins to beat at just 18 days? Isn't that
amazing? Muscles are forming, and arms, legs, eyes, and ears have begun to show.
2nd Month (5-8 Weeks)
By six weeks the jaw forms, including teeth and taste buds. The baby begins to swallow
amniotic fluid, and some have been observed hiccupping.
The kidneys begin to function. Fingers and toes are developing.
At seven weeks a baby's chest and abdomen are fully formed.
3rd Month (9-12 Weeks)
The baby now has fingerprints, turns his or her head, and opens and closes their mouth.
The sex of the baby can already be determined.
4th Month (13-16 Weeks)
This little baby is growing, and will be between 8-10 inches in length, and weighs about
one-half pound by the end of the fourth month.
His or her little ears can hear their momma's heartbeat, and external noises.

In this picture I am holding a fetal model that is the same size as an unborn baby at 16 weeks                          in their mother's womb.

5th Month (17-20 Weeks)
This little one is growing bigger and moving a lot. Some babies have been seen sucking
their thumb during a sonogram at the fifth month.
6th Month (21-24 Weeks)
A baby's oil and sweat glands are functioning. This little one is growing rapidly and his or
her lungs are becoming more developed.
Let the children come to me; do not prevent them.....
Then he embraced them and blessed them,

placing his hands on them.     Mark 10:14 & 16
My husband is holding the fetal model that is the same size as an unborn baby at 22 weeks in their mother's womb.                       

7th Month (25-28 Weeks)
This little baby boy or girl now recognizes his or her mother's voice. They exercise by stretching and kicking as they grow even bigger. They can use their senses of hearing, touch, and taste. They can even open their eyes and look around. If the baby is a boy, a son, this is when his testicles descend from the abdomen into the scrotum. What a miracle a new life is.

“Any country that accepts abortion is the poorest of the poor.” Saint Mother Teresa

“How can there be too many children? That is like saying there are too many flowers.” Saint Mother Teresa

8th Month (29-32 Weeks)
Now the baby's skin will thicken, with a layer of fat stored underneath. This helps with insulation and provides nourishment. He or she will swallow a gallon of amniotic fluid per day. The mom will be able to feel an elbow or heel, sometimes a little rear end, as her son or daughter kicks and moves in this cramped area.

“A society will be judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members: and among the most vulnerable are surely the unborn and the dying.” – Pope John Paul 11
9th Month (33-36 Weeks)
He or she will gain one half pound per week, and they are getting ready for birth. The bones in his or her head are soft and flexible to more easily mold and go through the birth canal. Did you know that 90% of our development happens in the womb?!
Planned or unplanned, a baby is a baby.
If you are pregnant and need help, please call the following number:  
         1-800-712-HELP/ 1-800-712-4357
Tell them what town you live in or give them your zip code. They will direct you to the nearest pregnancy help center. All services at pregnancy help centers are free.
Blessings to you and yours!
Bye for now, Sharla

Monday, February 24, 2020

When You Know it's a "Sign" - Follow Through

Good morning out there! This morning I was looking for a link on my computer
and an old blog post from 2014 popped up. I did not have my blog pulled up and
did a double take as I looked at the post. The template was the first one I used and
it has a picture of me when my hair was short. This post was from April of 2014
and since I started my blog in March of 2014 it was one where I didn't even have
a title because I hadn't figured out how to do that yet! I re-read the post and felt
a pain in my heart, probably close to the pain I felt when I wrote it that day.
I believe in signs and for whatever reason, I know that I must share this post again.
I took a picture of it because I couldn't get it to download. It was just frozen on
my computer screen, like a blaring message that needed to be shared once more.

I've saved the picture of the blog post and will add it below. The truth isn't always
easy and many times it is really an eye opener - except for those who choose
to be blind. As I re-read that post from almost six years ago - it reminded me why
I started this blog. I will continue to do all that I can to help people see and
understand the ugly, awful truth about abortion.

 I know that the words are hard to read on the picture so I will retype them below:
 Do you ever have a moment when something really grabs your heart, you know, all of a sudden you think of something that you just have to talk about, you just need someone to understand what you are trying to say? Well this is it for me, this is  my moment. I was scrolling past the pictures I've posted on my blog and I came to the picture of the Pro-Life Rams hammering the crosses into the ground at ASU to display the "Cemetery of the Innocents" and all of a sudden I realized that babies who are aborted aren't even buried. They are not even buried! These innocent babies are not even buried! The remains of aborted babies are picked up by a medical waste truck, to be thrown away like garbage. I know this is not something anyone wants to hear, it's not something I even want to think about but it is the truth, and that is why we have to stop abortion, we have to! A baby is a gift from God, a baby is not medical waste. Oh my gosh, why? How can we let this happen?
 I know that most of you who read my blog feel like I do, and I'm thankful for all of your encouragement and support. I know that many of you work hard for the pro-life movement, stand up for the pro-life movement, but if there is someone reading this blog who wants to do something but doesn't know what to do or where to start, here are some suggestions. Please pray for an end to abortion, vote for an end to abortion. Speak up about the ugly truth of abortion. Buy a pro-life bumper sticker, do something, anything is better than nothing. That is why I started this blog, I pray that this blog helps someone make a life choice. I pray that someone who reads this blog will guide someone else to make a life choice. I don't know if this blog will ever help anyone, I want it to, I pray it does, but at least I know I'm trying to do something. I will not give up, I will not be silent.
Please God, open our eyes, open our ears, touch our hearts, give us the strength, guidance and discernment to stop abortion. In Jesus Holy Name, Amen.
                                                                                      Bye for now, Sharla

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Being a Voice for the Precious Unborn

Hello out there! Greetings on this chilly day - 47 degrees and all is well!
I was reading some of the scriptures in my Magnificat monthly book which
includes; daily prayers, scriptures, readings for the daily Mass, stories about
the lives of some of the Saints, morning prayers, evening prayers - it is full
of God's word!
I'm going to share the scripture and intercessions from the morning prayers
for today, February 20, 2020.
Isaiah 48:20b-21
With shouts of joy proclaim this, make it known; Publish it to the ends of the
earth, and say, "The Lord has redeemed his servant Jacob. They did not
thirst when he led them through dry lands; Water from the rock he set
flowing for them; he cleft the rock, and waters welled forth."

I'm only going to share one of the intercessory prayers. This one really touched
me and I think it applies to many of us.

The response is - We put our trust in you!
(When I am reading through these prayers I usually personalize my response.)
For example - today my response was, "O God, I put my trust in you!"
You led your people through the sea dry-shod:
- let us put our trust in you as you lead us through
this day's challenges.
R: "O God, I put my trust in you!"
As I read that, I included a challenge I'm dealing with, it really personalizes
the prayers for me.
I just wanted to share that as a way for you to use whatever daily devotional
you read from to help personalize it for you. (I hope that makes sense!)

Two nights ago - Tuesday, February 18th - I spoke at the RCIA Class at
St. Joseph's Catholic Church. RCIA stands for "The Rite of Christian
Initiation of Adults" and is a process developed by the Catholic Church
for prospective converts to Catholicism. I converted to Catholicism at the
Easter Vigil in 1987 - almost thirty-three years ago.
I was honored to speak at this class and I loved sharing my conversion story.
Some day I will re-share that with you, but today I want to tell you about
the rest of what I talked about that evening. The format for this week was
to discuss the importance of human dignity, respecting all life from conception
to natural death. I took my fetal model set and some pictures. I wore my
t-shirt that says "every life is worth living" and my story began. I told them
that there are people who are known to wear many hats but instead of hats,
I wear many different t-shirts and the one I had chosen for that night matched
the topic of conversation. I love sharing stories of life, love, hope, and joy,
but in life there are also stories of sadness, grief, pain, and regret.
I won't go into all that I shared, but as I spoke I could see the expressions
on their faces as a certain story would resonate with them. I'm a pretty animated
speaker and there is always laughter and usually some tears. I enjoyed visiting
with everyone as we took a break. I thanked God for guiding me and giving me
the words I needed to say. My heart overflowed with joy and hope.
I like to add pictures to my posts. I was thinking about what picture would go
best with this story. I opened my closet door and started pulling t-shirts out.
I arranged them on the end of my bed and saw a collage of messages!

Sometimes you can be a voice for the weakest among us without talking at all.
                                                                                   Blessings to you and yours,

Sunday, February 9, 2020

And Through it All - Life Goes On!

Hello out there! This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad!
It seems like I'm always saying, "I haven't had much time to write posts for my
blog lately." Today is a new day and I guess it is time to share what has been
going on in my life.
Let me begin with thanksgiving and praise. I am truly blessed to have such a loving
and supportive family. I have also been blessed with loving and caring friends and
that includes my parish family. I've had so many amazing "Prayer Warriors" praying
for me and my family. And believe me, I have felt the power of their prayers.
December is a busy month for all of us. I went for my yearly mammogram in
mid-December. I have gone every year since I turned forty - I'm adopted and
don't know what my family health history is so I make sure that I follow all the
health screening guidelines. I received a phone call the day after my mammogram
and to summarize what happened next; diagnostic mammogram, needle biopsy
that showed cancer (caught very early) and appointments scheduled with an
oncologist for January 2nd and a surgeon later on. Jim and I told our adult
children and family that all would be well and we had a wonderful Christmas.
I don't care how old your children are - you always want to protect them.
I knew they needed to know the truth but I sure didn't want to worry them.
Jim and I met with the oncologist and he felt like I needed a special type of MRI.
We traveled to Abilene about ten days later and I had the MRI. It looked good,
I met with the surgeon the next week and scheduled surgery.
Before I go on I want to include something else. January is a very busy month for
pro-life people. I kept praying, "Lord, give me the strength I need, to do all that I
need to do." I was very happy when my surgery was scheduled for January 31st.
I was able to participate in the Silent Prayer Vigil we had scheduled for January
22nd, the 47th Anniversary of Roe v Wade. Our prayer vigil was held at noon
in front of the Tom Green County Courthouse. There were at least 130 people
who came to peacefully pray on that day. That evening I was blessed to spend
time with the youth at Sacred Heart Cathedral. We did a thirty minute
pro-life presentation for the 6th - 8th graders and then went down the hall and
did another thirty minute pro-life presentation for the 9th - 12th graders. I love
talking to our youth - they are amazing!
Saturday, January 25th - road trip with three of my oldest grandkids! On Friday
night, January 24th, I picked up my grandkids for a sleep over. My grandson
was turning 14 the next week and my granddaughters are 12 and 13. These
are only three of our grandchildren, we are blessed with ten! I knew that they
would understand and enjoy traveling to Austin for the Texas Rally for Life. We
were meeting up with several people from San Angelo and the surrounding
areas there. Three charter busses full of our friends and parish families were
leaving at 5:30 am on Saturday morning. Several families, like us, were taking
our own vehicles. Jim fixed breakfast burritos for us and helped us get every
thing loaded up. He was smiling and waving as we drove out of the driveway
at 5:45 am. I think he said something like, "better you than me!" That was just
fine with me! The kids and I had a great time. We met everyone in Austin
at St. Louis King of France Catholic Church for Mass. It was packed! Families
and youth groups from all across Texas. We ate lunch in the Parish Hall
afterwards. The Knights of Columbus had grilled hamburgers and we sat down
and ate with our friends. The next part was a little  nerve racking - driving to the
parking place where we were going to meet and march to the Capitol. I'll just
say this - we made it! We parked and caught up with everyone else and then
we marched. The kids loved it! There were posters everywhere. They all had
such neat and unique messages. The kids were holding posters we picked up
at the church. They said that next year they're going to make their own. I wish
you could have seen all the happy, smiling faces. Being around all the young
people who are pro-life - they get it, they really do! My grandkids loved it all.
When someone would holler, "We are" and everyone else would holler back,
"Pro-Life!" My grandkids voices were loud and proud. When we made it to the
front lawn of the Capitol there was music and singing. We heard from different
speakers, someone who survived an abortion and political leaders as well.
When the Rally was over we went inside of the Capitol. The State Capitol of
Texas is a beautiful building. My grandkids went up the stairs and around all
the balconies. They would wave at me - I was tired and decided to stay on the
ground floor of the rotunda. They took so many pictures and learned so much.
I was glad that I had been able to take them inside to see our State Capitol.
We finally left and went looking for where we parked - we have already figured
out an easier plan for next year! I took them to visit some of our oldest and
dearest friends who happen to live in South Austin. They haven't seen the kids
in quite awhile. They had snacks ready for us and we had a nice visit. We left
and drove a little ways back into town and had dinner at Cheddars. The food
was good and our waiter was really sweet and a young man himself.
He asked what we were doing there and we told him all about it. He seemed
really interested and shook our hands and told us to have a safe trip back home.
We left the restaurant at 8:00 pm. We had a long drive ahead of us to get back
home. All was well until we stopped in Brady. I filled the Explorer up with gas
and everyone went to the bathroom and got a drink. I'm not sure what happened,
but delirium set in as soon as I started the engine. The kids started laughing and
wheezing, and then would laugh harder. This went on for about thirty-five
minutes, about the time we made it to Eden. I told them that I needed some
quiet time and they laughed harder. I started laughing too but told them in a firm
"Nana voice" that I meant it - knock it off! The remaining 45 minutes was quiet
and I was thankful. We took my 13 year old granddaughter home first, her dad was
waiting for her.  My other two are brother and sister and live another thirty five
miles away. They were going to spend another night at Nana and Pa's house.
As we drove across the low water crossing that is close to our home the dense
fog hovered above. It was midnight and past time for us all to be snug as bugs
tucked in our beds! We thanked the Good Lord for a safe trip home. I told
the kids goodnight and I slept like a log! The next day I was exhausted but I
was thankful that I had been able to take my grandkids on that trip. I pray
that I will be able to take each and every one of them as they grow older.
God had answered my prayers - I was able to participate in all the pro-life
activities we had planned for January. Now it was time to pray for my surgery.
I had a lumpectomy and some lymph nodes removed on Friday, January 31st.
I've heard back from pathologist - they got it all and my lymph nodes are
clear. Once I heal up from the surgery I'll have to have spot radiation for
4 - 6 weeks. I'll know more when I go back for my appointment next week.
They kept saying I have breast cancer and yes, I guess I do/did. But mine was
caught early. I just think of it more as a bad spot they had to take out. I'm
thankful it hadn't spread.
I think of all the women who have breast cancer, who've had to have
mastectomies, radical mastectomies, and had to endure chemotherapy and
radiation too - my heart goes out to each and every one of you!
I pray that you have great doctors:
oncologists, surgeons, etc. I pray that you are blessed with prayerful
people surrounding you and covering you with their prayers. I pray that
your family is supportive and encouraging. I pray that you are not burdened
with bills. I pray for your healing and your well being.
I have hesitated about posting this because it is such a personal thing. But I
hope my post will remind women why it is so important to get a mammogram
every year.
Our lives are busy and crazy sometimes - but the one thing I realize is life
does go on. Whether today is a good day in your life or maybe one full of
turmoil - reach out to others, let them surround you with prayer.
I have been blessed with cards, homemade meals brought to our home, roses
from my husband who has also been a strong shoulder to cry on. Our daughter
has come to help clean and organize. We've been blessed with gift cards for
meals, and the list goes on. The prayers, so many people praying for me and my
family - I am beyond humbled and truly blessed.
                                                           Blessings to you and yours,
                                                           near or far, wherever you are!

One more thing - Last night we were blessed to do a pro-life presentation at
a girl's retreat that was held for 7th - 12th graders at one of our parishes.
One of my friends picked me up (I still can't drive) and we met another friend
and spent time with these amazing young ladies and the team of women in
charge of the retreat. We shared information with them and they were very
informative as well! Talking to our youth - letting them know that they are
special, and that God has wonderful plans for them, that we are all "fearfully
and wonderfully made" - I pray that I will be able to reach out to our youth
all the days that God gives me voice - and one young lady said - "We have to
be their voice" and she was talking about the precious unborn babies.
Matthew 18:1-4
At that time the disciples approached Jesus and said, "Who is the greatest
in the kingdom of heaven?" He called a child over, placed it in their
midst, and said, "Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like
children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles
himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

Friday, January 24, 2020

Perseverance - Pro-Life - #WhyWeMarch

Hello out there! Tomorrow I am taking three of my oldest grandkids to the
Texas Rally for Life in Austin. This is going to be such a great experience for
them! I will write all about it on Sunday or maybe Monday!

We had a Silent Prayer Vigil in front of the Tom Green County Courthouse
from 12 noon - 1:00 pm on the 47th anniversary of Roe v Wade (Tuesday,
January 22, 2020). There were between 132 - 136 people and it was peaceful
and full of prayerful people. It was an ecumenical gathering and spirit filled!

That evening I was blessed to spend time with the 6th - 8th grade youth and then
the 9th - 12th grade youth at Sacred Heart Cathedral. We discussed pro-life
issues and I showed them the Touch of Life Fetal Model display. I love sharing
the positive message of life with our youth - Respect Life from Conception to
Natural Death.

The following are two blog posts that I wrote after Jim and I went to our
first Texas Rally for Life in January 2015.  (Part 1 and Part 2)
It was an amazing experience!

This post will be #438 - I've been writing stories since I started my blog on
March 22, 2014. I wondered when I began if I would find enough to say -
well I've found plenty to share and sometimes I don't get to write as much as
I would like to because of busy, busy days!
Each story is from my heart and the following prayer is one I wrote in the Spring
of 2016.
And today I pray it again and include -
Blessings to you near and far,
Blessings and peace wherever you are!
 I pray that your day is full of blessings.If you are sick, I pray that you will get well.
If you have lost a loved one, I pray that you will be comforted.

If you are anxious, I pray that a feeling of peace will wash over you.
If you are lonely, I pray that someone  will reach out to you, I pray that you
will know that even though I may not know you,  I really do care.
If you are struggling financially, I pray that God will send you what you need.
If you are struggling with addiction, I pray that God will give you strength
and courage to give up whatever is holding you hostage.

If you are in a crisis pregnancy, I pray that you will be directed to the path of life,
and guided to all the help that is available for you and your baby.
If you are a caregiver, I pray that you will get the rest you need, and know that it
is ok to take time for yourself.
Dear God, I pray for peace all across the whole world. I pray for peace in every

country. I pray for those who seek refuge.
I pray for those who are hungry and thirsty. I pray for the homeless and the lonely.
I lift all the intentions I've listed above to You, God our Father.
I pray for anyone and  everyone who might be suffering or going through any
of the things I've written  about.
Please God, show us how to take care of each other, to love one another and
help us to be discerning in all that we do. Thank you for today, please guide us and
help us to live the way you want us to. Please keep us safe and help us to look to
You, and not the world for direction and answers.

 In Jesus Name I pray, Amen.
Saint Mother Teresa -
Please pray for us!            

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Silent and Peaceful Prayer Vigil Planned for the Anniversary of Roe vs Wade

The 47th anniversary of Roe v Wade is  Wednesday, January 22, 2020.
Please join us on that day as we gather for a time of silent prayer and reflection.
We will meet at the Tom Green County Courthouse in San Angelo from 12:00 noon -
1:00 pm. We are inviting people of all faiths to join us as we remember
the almost 62 million unborn babies that have been aborted in the United States since
January 22, 1973. This is also a time to pray all those who have been hurt and those
who need healing from a past abortion. This will be a peaceful gathering. Come and
stay the whole hour or drop by during your lunch hour and pray for a few minutes.

Number of Abortions - Abortion Counters ( 2:25 am this morning (1/4/2020) - the following are the number of abortions:

In United States today - 258
US since 1973: Roe vs Wade - 60,949,964
By Planned Parenthood since 1970 - 8,291,171
By Planned Parenthood this year -2,926
United States this Year - 7,932
US this Year after 16 weeks gestation - 380

I took a picture of the 16 week fetal model I use as a teaching tool. This is the size
an unborn baby is in his or her mother's womb at 16 weeks.
Abortion is legal in Texas up to 20 weeks. My husband held the 22 week fetal model
for me.
Planned or unplanned, a baby is a unique and precious gift from God.
Please mark your calendars and join us. 1/22/2020 from 12 noon - 1:00 pm.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Reflection, Praise, and Prayers

Good morning out there and Merry Christmas!
Today, December 31st is the -
Seventh Day within the Octave of the Nativity of the Lord!
Isaiah 9:5
A child is born for us, and a son is given to us; his scepter of power rests
upon his shoulder, and his name will be called Messenger of great counsel.

Yesterday, December 30th was the -
Sixth Day within the Octave of the Nativity of the Lord! was my birthday! I love that my birthday falls on this special day!
I am thankful for another year of life.

I want to share something from the Magnificat, my daily Catholic devotional.
This book has the readings from the Old and New Testaments
of the Bible and Responsorial Psalms that will be proclaimed at daily Mass.
The booklet also includes;
morning prayers, a hymn from the scriptures, evening prayers, a meditation
for the day, and a short story about the lives of certain Saints.
The following is from the morning prayer section for December 30th.
Jim and I were at the Adoration Chapel when I read these scriptures and the
reflection. I interrupted his prayers because I had to share this beautiful
message from our Lord!

Canticle of Judith 16:1, 13-15
1)"Strike up the instruments,
 a song to my God with timbrels, chant to the Lord with cymbals;
Sing to him a new song, exalt and acclaim his name.
13-15)"A new hymn I will sing to my God.
O Lord, great are you and glorious, wonderful in power and unsurpassable.
Let your every creature serve you; for you spoke, and they were made,
You sent forth your spirit, and they were created; no one can resist your word."
The mountains to their bases, and the seas, are shaken;
the rocks, like wax, melt before your glance."
"But to those who fear you,
you are very merciful.

 1 Samuel 12:2
As for me, I am old and gray. I have lived with you from my youth to the
present day.

Anna had grown old in faith and hope, but when she saw the Child of God's
promise brought to the temple, she sang in her heart a new song of praise
and thanksgiving. One is never too old to be surprised by joy.

It's almost like a gift just for me, to read these beautiful words on my birthday.
I am growing older and grayer. But I am also a joyful woman. I have so much
love in my heart. I really relate to the last line:
"she sang in her heart a new song of praise and thanksgiving. One is never too
old to be surprised by joy."
I pray that God will always help me to see the beauty
in this world, to always be joyful and to be a light for all those around me.

There are going to be a couple of small pot holes on my journey during the
next couple of months but I know that God will be with me through it all.
My mind goes to this hymn and the truth each verse speaks. It is one of my
favorite songs.
The Servant Song by Richard Gillard
Will you let me be your servant, let me be as Christ to you;
Pray that I may have the grace to let you be my servant too.
We are pilgrims on a journey, we are travelers on the road;
We are here to help each other walk the mile and bear the load.
I will hold the Christ-light for you in the night-time of your fear;
I will hold my hand out to you, speak the peace you long to hear.
I will weep when you are weeping; When you laugh I'll laugh with you.
I will share your joy and sorrow til we've seen this journey through.
When we sing to God in heaven we shall find such harmony,
born of all we've known together of Christ's love and agony.
Will you let me be your servant, let me be as Christ to you;
Pray that I may have the grace to let you be my servant too.

I am always praying for you - near or far - wherever you are.
And now I'm asking for your prayers and also praying that
God will give me the grace to let you be my servant too.

The picture below includes my birthday present from my thoughtful husband.
It goes perfectly with the cross he bought for me several years ago.
Together they make a unique and amazing centerpiece for our kitchen table!
Yes, I am thankful and I will sing praises to the Lord!