Join us for a conversation with Misty Phillip about abortion, pregnancy loss, and the God who forgives and comforts. Misty shares her vulnerable testimony of finding freedom in God's forgiveness after having an abortion. Through her repentance, she has become an advocate for the unborn and shares about the sanctity of human life.
After also experiencing pregnancy loss and the stillbirth of a baby boy with a life-limiting diagnosis (and choosing to carry him), Misty shares how she grew in faith through her losses and pain. Her testimony is one of redemption and points us to the hope of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
In this episode, we discussed:
Guilt and shame after having an abortion
Finding freedom in Christ's forgiveness and grace
The importance of confession of sin and the sharing of our testimony
Combating the lies in culture from the Enemy
How God can heal the wounds of an abortion
Honoring your baby's life by sharing the Gospel
How do you become spiritually mature through trials?
Gratitude in the midst of grief
God's sovereignty and how He never wastes our suffering
The hope and promise of Heaven for all babies who pass away
Full transcript below.
Each episode has a special Hope Guide that you can download by clicking the button below. It is packed with hope-filled resources and extra information from the episode!
Discussion / Application Questions (leave your answers below in the comments!)
Misty shares that when we cry out to God and stay in His Word that He is faithful to carry us through. He is close to the brokenhearted and comforts us in our sorrow. How have you felt the Lord's presence in your grief? Name specific examples of His faithfulness.
In this episode, Misty vulnerably shares about the abortion she had when she was young and how she stuffed the pain, guilt, and shame for years. She finally found freedom in Christ when she accepted His love and forgiveness. If you've had an abortion, are you struggling with the weight of shame? Have you repented and accepted His forgiveness? Write a prayer crying out to Him.
Revelation 12:11 says that we overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony. Misty believes that we can help others who are walking in the darkness of grief or shame by sharing our stories. Even though it's difficult, that's how we overcome. Who can you share your story with? What other avenues could you share your testimony?
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MEET OUR GUEST
Misty Phillip is the founder of Spark Media and the host of the By His Grace Podcast. She is passionate about equipping Christian communicators through events, a podcast network, a magazine, and an online community.
Misty has a powerful story of redemption after experiencing an abortion, ectopic pregnancy, a miscarriage, and the stillbirth of her son due to a life-limiting condition. In her regret and pain, she found forgiveness and freedom in Jesus Christ.
Connect with Misty:
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MEET OUR HOST
Ashley Opliger is the Executive Director of Bridget's Cradles, a nonprofit organization based in Wichita, Kansas that donates cradles to over 1,250 hospitals in all 50 states and comforts over 26,000 bereaved families a year.
Ashley is married to Matt and they have three children: Bridget (in Heaven), and two sons. She is a follower of Christ who desires to share the hope of Heaven with families grieving the loss of a baby.
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Episode 27: Abortion, Pregnancy Loss, and the God Who Forgives and Comforts with Misty Phillip
Ashley Opliger: [00:00:00] You’re listening to the Cradled in Hope Podcast on the Edifi Podcast Network. I’m your host, Ashley Opliger. I’m a wife, mom, and follower of Christ who founded Bridget’s Cradles, a nonprofit ministry in memory of my daughter, Bridget, who was stillborn at 24 weeks.
Cradled in Hope is a Gospel-focused podcast for grieving moms to find comfort, hope, and healing after the loss of a baby. We want this to be a safe place for your broken heart to land.
Here, we are going to trust God’s promise to heal our hearts, restore our joy, and use our grief for good. With faith in Jesus and eyes fixed on Heaven, we do not have to grieve without hope. We believe that Jesus cradles us in hope while He cradles our babies in Heaven.
Welcome to the Cradled in Hope Podcast.
Ashley Opliger: [00:00:53] Hi friends, and welcome back. I'm so grateful to have my friend Misty on the podcast today. I met Misty through her network of podcasters and attended her Christian podcast conference in Nashville this past spring. I've enjoyed getting to know her, and I know you will love her too. Misty is a dreamer and a doer passionate about helping people spark their soul message. She encourages people to use their story to give God glory.
Misty is the founder of Spark Media and she equips Christian communicators and podcasters through virtual and live events, a podcast network, magazine, and a thriving membership community. She is the host of the By His Grace Podcast. Misty has a powerful story to share of loss and redemption.
Before we get started and welcome Misty, I do want to give a disclaimer that we will be talking about abortion in our episode. We understand this can be a sensitive topic, but we want to bring it into the light. For the mom who has made this choice, there is grace and forgiveness and space to grieve your baby.
Misty's testimony is one of both regret and redemption, trial and triumph. She is vulnerable in sharing the hard parts of her past and how God's grace has brought her freedom. Speaking for myself and Bridget’s Cradles, we hold pro-life values and believe in the sanctity of human life. But at the same time, we believe there's no sin too great for God to cover it with the price He paid on the cross.
We pray this episode would bring light and freedom to those who are grieving a baby they aborted and bearing the weight of their shame. Misty also shares about grieving her natural miscarriages and baby who had a life-limiting diagnosis. There is something for all of us to learn and be encouraged by in her testimony. We pray her words would bring peace and hope. Let's welcome Misty.
Ashley Opliger: [00:02:38] Welcome, Misty, to the Cradled in Hope Podcast. We're so glad you're here today.
Misty Phillip: [00:02:43] Thank you, Ashley. I'm so excited to be here with you today, my friend.
Ashley Opliger: [00:02:47] Well, I have been so inspired by you. And we've talked about, in your introduction, the Spark Media organization that you've started, the Spark Conference for Christian podcasters–you do so many things in the world of Christian podcasting. And you've been such an inspiration to me as we've started this podcast. I've really enjoyed having the community of other podcasters.
And I got to go out to your conference in Nashville in March and hear you speak, and we just had a wonderful time learning. There was so much wisdom and encouragement there. And through that conference, I was able to learn more of your story and find out that you have experienced many losses.
And so I really would love for you to share your story, your testimony with our grieving moms because you have so much wisdom to share and so much hope.
Misty Phillip: [00:03:39] Yeah. Thank you so much for having me here. I am a mother of seven, but I have three amazing young men that God has gifted me with here today.
My story starts back long before my motherhood journey began. When I was. 12, my brother died and it wrecked my family. And I got into trouble in school, and I started drinking and doing all of the wrong things. And I was raped when I was in junior high and I had always wanted to save myself until I was married. And I just longed to be a mom, and that was even from a little girl.
I think we have these hopes and dreams and desires. We think about what things are going to look like, and that was very strong within me. But then when my brother died and I was raped, I felt like the world, like everything was just upside down.
And I just looked for anything that I could do to fill that void and that pain in my life. And I started doing drugs and was promiscuous because I really thought it didn't really matter. It really does matter, but we'll get to that in a little bit.
And I became pregnant when I was in high school and I was on a lot of drugs, serious amounts of drugs. And the enemy just wreaked havoc with me and just lied to me that this baby was going to be deformed, that my parents would find out I'm doing drugs, that I wouldn't be able to handle the situation, just lie upon lie. And I was deceived into thinking that abortion was the answer.
And so that happened when I was in high school and I stuffed that pain. And when I was in college, I had a conversion experience where I really knew that I didn't like the way my life was going and that I wanted something better. And I began praying and crying out to Jesus. And I just said, “Please Lord, bring me my husband. I'm tired of dating. I don't want to do this anymore.”
And I met my husband and three weeks later I was pregnant. Well, I wasn't married. And we just knew from the moment we met, it was love at first sight. And so I didn't want to get married because I was pregnant, because I thought that was not the right thing to do.
In my pregnancy, my dad died and it was another compounding of grief. But God blessed me with an incredible child, who is now 28 years old and is an amazing young man. And then after that, my husband and I, we tried to have more kids and I wasn't getting pregnant. I think probably the stress of being a working mom and trying to manage all of the things limited our ability to get pregnant.
And we finally got pregnant and I was so excited! And back then, we didn't do all the ultrasounds that they do nowadays, and our son was born with club feet, so his feet were upside down and backwards. And he had surgery the first week of his life, and he was in and out of the hospital the whole first year of his life.
And then when he turned one, he started having grand mal seizures and he seized continuously for several days, and as a result, has a brain injury. He is 23 years old, but I remember when he was born, looking at him with his feet upside down and backwards, and I looked at his little face and I said, “God, he's perfect. He's just perfect.”
And so after Connor was born, we wanted more children. So we tried to get pregnant again, and we did. And I remember going to my eight-week appointment and we could hear the heartbeat was good and strong, and they did an ultrasound and they couldn't find my baby.
And my doctor was leaving to go on vacation, and he was like, “This doesn't make sense because your hormones are testing really high, but we can't find the baby.”
And he said, “Let's just go in, it's going to be a really quick procedure to see what's going on, in the morning before I leave to go on vacation.”
And so my husband is there at the surgery center, he’s in the waiting room. The doctor’s like, “It’s going to be 30 minutes in and out.” Well, by the time I got back to the OR prep room, I had begun hemorrhaging and am so lucky that I'm alive, because you can bleed out on the table and there's nothing that can be done.
That 30-minute procedure ended up to be several hours, and I had a cornual pregnancy, which is a form of an ectopic pregnancy. It was very dangerous and I nearly lost my life.
And there was so much grief there. And I remember going to my Sunday School class and people don't always know what to say. My friends knew that I had just lost this baby and my Sunday school teacher, who's a guy, said, “Misty, you don't even look pregnant.” And it was just like …
Oh, sometimes people are insensitive. They just, they don't know. They don't even know, and they say things that are just hurtful. And so that was really hard because I had just come off of having a child with special needs and I thought we were going to have this next baby. And then to have that surgery, it was really hard.
But God continued to do a work in my heart and in our life, and then I found out I was pregnant again. And this time, I began bleeding about six weeks into my pregnancy and cried out to God. I was actually at a Sunday School function. And when you have your period, you know that feeling. And I was like, “Wait a minute, this shouldn't be happening right now.”
And I went to the bathroom and I was bleeding, and I ran out and I told everybody, And they sat me in a circle and laid hands on me and prayed over me. And I ended up being on bed rest my entire pregnancy, but that's when my third son was born.
And he is amazing, and we named him Ian, because that means a gift from God, because we knew, we weren't sure that he was going to come to be. And so we really fought hard on our knees for him and considered him a gift.
And then we miscarried not long after that. And we really tried to get pregnant again, because we felt like our family wasn't complete. And so we gave it to the Lord and said, “You determine the number of kids that we'll have.” And so we just gave our womb to Him, and we prayed over that and like, “Lord, You're sovereign over that and we trust You with whatever's next.”
And I didn't get pregnant, and I didn't get pregnant, and I didn't get pregnant, and I didn't get pregnant. And we're just like, “Well, I guess that's it. We're done.” And a few weeks before I turned 40, we found out I was pregnant.
And this is kind of a funny story because I called my husband, who was at work, and he was in a meeting in a conference room. And he had plugged his phone in, because it was about to die, on the person's desk.
And we have a rule in our house. If I call multiple times in a row, something's up. You've got to answer the phone. So he saw me call, he saw me call, he saw me call. He was in the middle of a presentation, and he said, “Do y'all mind if I answer this real quick?” And he put it on speakerphone and he said, ”Hello.”
And I go, “I’m pregnant!”
Ashley Opliger: [00:11:13] Oh my goodness.
Misty Phillip: [00:11:15] In front of this whole group of people, and we were so thrilled! We were so excited that God had blessed us with another child. And we went to the 16-week ultrasound, because I thought, “Maybe I'm going to get a girl this time.”
And I had my mother-in-law with me and I had my youngest son with me, and he was just like, “Look, it's so cute,” because he could see on the ultrasound. And the tech began measuring and measuring, and we knew that something was not right.
And she asked my mother-in-law and son to leave the room and called the doctor in. And she said, “You need to go have a Level II ultrasound, and you need to go see a fetal-maternal specialist because these are the things that we surmise are wrong with your child, but we don't know for sure. And so we need to take it to the next step.”
And so we went and did that and we heard, “Your son is incompatible with life.” He had two chambers in his heart. His brain was malformed. His arms and legs were shortened. He may have spina bifida. There was a whole bunch of things that were wrong with him. And they said, ”Most people in your position terminate the pregnancy.”
And we said, “No. He's fearfully and wonderfully made, and God has a purpose and a plan no matter how long he lives, and we’re going to keep this pregnancy as long as the Lord allows it.”
And then we went into hyperdrive with prayer and having all of our friends and all of our family praying. And our son Liam was, well, I say he was born in Heaven, he was stillborn. He had Trisomy 18 and all the other things that I said were wrong. And it was a difficult time.
My friends wanted to come to the hospital and be with me during the birth. And I said, “No, this is something really personal and private that my husband and I have to do together.” And so we did. We had candles and we had praise music on when he was born, and we hired a photographer to come in and take pictures.
And I think I told you this before, but I thought he was going to be a lot bigger because I was probably at 22 weeks pregnant, 22 or 24, somewhere in there. And the problem is I went to a doctor's appointment and my doctor told me his heart had stopped beating. And she said, “I want you to go home and try to have him naturally.”
Well, I went home over the weekend knowing that he had passed, but he wouldn't pass. And so I ended up having to go to the hospital and be induced, but we had the sweetest, calmest time between my husband and I.
And then we had our family come in, and we had the photographer come in. And what we had bought as booties ended up being the little cap that we put on his head because he was just so tiny.
Then we cried, and we prayed, and we sent him off to a funeral home, and we had a casket that was way too big for him. So I love the cradles that you have, which are just precious.
But I had friends that didn't understand why we were having a funeral, but my boys were grieving the loss of their brother and I needed to shepherd them through it. I needed it. My husband needed it.
But those same friends grieved the loss of their miscarried child that they had never grieved before, because in the funeral we said, “The Lord gives and the Lord takes away Blessed be the name of the Lord.”
And I was in such a peace bubble that I was going around ministering to other people.
And it was this confounded thing, that they're like, “How can you be okay?”
“It's only because I have the hope that lies within me that I could be okay.”
And I told you that my brother had died when I was young and my mom got really angry with the Lord and didn't go to church, and was very angry and depressed and struggled with anxiety, and really had a difficult time through my growing up. And she saw me lose my son and be okay, and to be able to love on people.
And one of the things that we really wanted our pastor to do at the funeral was to share the Gospel, because that is why we're here. We're here to give God glory. And if my son in his life and death could bring glory to God, it's what I wanted. And he shared it in such a clear way that I think my mom, really for the first time, grasped the love of God and ultimately came to know the Lord before she died.
Ashley Opliger: [00:16:06] That’s so amazing.
Misty Phillip: [00:11:07] Yeah. So that is my motherhood journey in a nutshell.
Ashley Opliger: [00:16:12] Misty, you have been through so much since you were a little girl, walked through so much loss, so much pain and suffering, and to see how God has redeemed your pain and walked you through, and I think coming up to Liam’s birth into Heaven, you had already such a journey with Jesus that you learned to persevere in faith.
And your spiritual maturity had grown so much in that time that you were able to experience peace that surpasses all understanding and have a clear mind and perspective of Heaven and eternity to minister to other people.
I think because you had been through so much already and you really learned to trust Jesus and understand His character, that He's faithful through it all, even when life looks so different from what you had hoped or expected it to be.
And so I would love for you to share: How did God get you through that time? How did He develop that spiritual maturity and that trust and surrender to His will and not your own?
Misty Phillip: [00:17:14] Yeah, many years of being at my kitchen table with my Bible open, going, “Help me, God. How do I get through this?” Because those were not the only losses and grief that we suffered during that time. And life was just hard.
And so He really, like you said, He was building that into me on a daily basis, just being in His Word, seeking His hope and His answers. But He actually prepared me in a really interesting way. I discovered Ann Voskamp about the time.
I discovered her blog when I was pregnant with Liam, and a friend of mine told me about her and she was like, “You have to read this book. It's called A Thousand Gifts.” And the book is about being grateful in the every day, in the every moment.
So even when I was pregnant and carrying this baby that I didn't know whether would live or not, every day, instead of being like, “Oh, I'm getting so fat,” or whatever, that I would normally be all upset about, I would be like, “Thank You, Lord, that You've given me another day to be pregnant. Thank You for ..,” every little thing that I could be grateful for.
And I think that heart of gratitude really prepared me so much. So between prayer and being in the Word of God, and being surrounded by a family who loved me and a community of believers who loved me and poured into me, and then just having that heart of gratitude, I think it changed everything.
Because it's not what I wanted, but I trusted that God was sovereign and if He allowed it for a reason and that there was purpose in this pain and that He would use it, because God doesn't waste anything.
And so I tried to wake up every morning and be grateful. Now, that doesn't mean that every morning was easy and I was running around the house and birds chirping and flowers blooming. It was hard, but God was with me in the middle of it all. And His love, in Zephaniah says His love sings over us loudly.
And when we press into Him and we are in His Word and we cry out to Him in our grief and in our pain, He is so faithful to carry us through, like the Footprints poem says. There's one set of footprints because He was carrying me through. And that's what He does because He loves us so much that He died for us. And He comforts us in our grief because He's near the brokenhearted.
Ashley Opliger: [00:19:55] We hope you are enjoying this episode so far. We want to take a quick break to tell you about some resources our ministry provides to grieving moms.
On our website, bridgetscradles.com, you can find hope-filled resources on grieving and healing including memorial ideas, quotes & Scripture, featured stories, and recommended books and other organizations. We share ideas on how to navigate difficult days such as due dates, Heaven Days, and holidays.
In addition, every month I lead Christ-centered support groups for bereaved moms called Hope Gatherings, both in-person and online. You can find a list of upcoming dates and sign up for our next support group on our website.
Lastly, we would love for you to connect with us on Facebook and Instagram. You can find us on these three pages: @bridgetscradles, @cradledinhope, and my personal page @ashleyopliger. You can also join our private Cradled in Hope Facebook group for grieving moms to find community. We would be honored to hear your baby’s story and be praying for you by name. Now let’s get back to our episode.
Ashley Opliger: [00:21:06] I love that you shared about gratitude, I think it’s so important. There's a verse that says that we should do that with thanksgiving and praise. And that's gratitude, just having a heart that's thankful for each gift that He's given us.
And with each of our babies, whether they've gone to Heaven or they're on earth, each day is a gift because we're not promised, even you and I and everyone listening, we're not promised to live till tomorrow. Each day that we have on this earth, that we have breath in our lungs is a gift.
And even in the midst of suffering, there are things that we can be grateful for because there really is scientific proof about how gratitude does change your brain and your perspective, and can lift you out of the depths of despair. And we know that ultimately the hope of Jesus is what can do that.
And I love that you talked about God's love for us, because He loves us so much that He is present with us. He's weeping with us. He cares. He wants to be in our pain with us. He's not afraid to sit in the really hard and the really dark places with us, because of His own life. Jesus was the Man of Sorrows. He came and lived a life of suffering and was mocked and tortured and crucified. And so if there's anyone that ever lived on this earth that can identify with pain and suffering, it’s Jesus, and we can bring our pain to Him.
And I want to talk now about your story with abortion, because there is grace for the mom who has made that choice. Both you and I, we are very pro-life and we believe in the sanctity of human life, but we also know that there is grace and forgiveness for the woman who has chosen abortion, because like you said in your own story, there is so much deception around abortion, so many lies from our culture, from the enemy that are really coercing and pushing women to make this decision when it's really not best for her and of course not best for her baby.
And so would you share your story of finding grace and freedom from the shame and the guilt of that decision and how you have learned to grieve that precious baby, as well as your other babies that passed away naturally?
Misty Phillip: [00:23:16] Yeah. I think that I stuffed the pain for many years and felt the guilt and the shame. And the thing about it is when we have a sin that is hidden, the enemy has a hold on us. And so I walked many years of my life as a believer, but not walking in the fullness and freedom of forgiveness because I didn't tell anybody and just kept that to myself. And the weight of the pain and the guilt and the shame compounded the loss.
And when our son Liam was born, my oldest son was doing a pro-life speech and he shared the story of Liam. And the lady that ran Texas Right to Life came up to me afterwards and said, “Would you please share your story?” And this was like six weeks after Liam was born. And I did.
And that got me started speaking in the pro-life arena, and so I would speak a little bit and then I would stop. And I was invited to speak in Atlanta with a group called Save the 1. And there were several people that had horrific stories of pro-life stories, and I sat through each one of these stories where there had been rape and abuse and sex trafficking and all kinds of things, but these people had chosen life.
And I was there to share my story of Liam, but what God did for me during that time is He broke my heart over my sin and my loss of my child who was aborted. And I confessed it to this group.
And when we bring that sin out into the light, then we can find healing and forgiveness.
And so I knew that God was calling me into ministry, but I wasn't able to take the steps to go into ministry because I was held back by that guilt and shame. But once I finally let it go and came home from that speaking event in Atlanta, and I knew I had to tell my kids.
And that was probably the hardest thing, because I'd never wanted my kids to look at me differently, but I really felt like I was supposed to write a book to share my pro-life story.
And I did, I wrote 40,000 words, but I've never done anything with it because God called me to start Spark at this part of my journey. And I may share that book at another point, because I think right now, like you said, there are so many women who are deceived.
And then I think a lot of the anger that we're seeing coming out of–with Roe v. Wade being overturned–is those women have never had their hearts healed by the Lord.
They've never accepted the forgiveness that Jesus freely offers us. And so they don't have hope, so therefore they lash out in anger because they're trying to justify the pain instead of laying our sin and our burden down at the foot of the cross.
And so It was probably many years that it took me to grieve the loss of that child, but God did it in such an amazing way, by me sharing my testimony. At the end of that event in Atlanta, a lady came up to me and she was bawling and she was in tears.
And she said, “The doctors told me that my child was incompatible with life and I aborted him. And I'm so grieving that I did that.” And she was like, “I'm so proud of you that you didn't do it.”
And I said, “The only reason that I could do that was because I had done the other thing and I knew that it was wrong.” I knew that what it does is abortion brings death into the innermost, sacred space of a woman. And that's something that nobody talks about.
They call it health care and they call it body autonomy. But really, it's bringing death into the secret place that Psalm 139 talks about, where God knit us together in our mother's womb. And so only God can heal the wounds of an abortion.
So if there is someone who is listening to this podcast and they have never asked for healing and forgiveness, I just pray that they would just come to God, who is there with His arms open wide and He loves you so greatly. And you too can walk in the freedom and forgiveness of Christ if you just ask.
And so that is the thing that I think I want your listeners to be left with today is that whether we lose our child through abortion or an ectopic pregnancy, a miscarriage or whatever the loss, is that God is there. He loves us more than we ever know. And His forgiveness is as far as the east is to the west, and He just wants your heart and your relationship, and He wants to heal your heart.
Ashley Opliger: [00:28:31] Absolutely. There is no sin that God will not forgive. Because we're humans, we have a wicked heart that is turned away from God, but His grace and forgiveness is above any and every thing that we can do including abortion.
And so if you're listening, just as Misty said, Jesus is there. He wants to forgive you, to bring you healing because the enemy wants to keep you in isolation. He wants to keep you in the dark, keep this a secret and make you feel so much shame that you can't bring the sin into the light where God can actually heal your heart and bring redemption from your story.
So I want to read 1 John 1:9. It says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Just as Misty said, our sins are removed as far as the east is from the west. The Bible says that He will remember our sins no more.
And so I want to encourage you, knowing that there is grace and forgiveness and healing that can happen, because as a ministry leader, I lead support groups for women who have experienced miscarriage and stillbirth.
And we’ll have women in their 30s that are married that are having children, and they'll experience a miscarriage or stillbirth, and they'll come to the group to find healing for that loss.
But then after the group, after all of the people have gone away, and whether it's in person with me or through an email to me, I've had some women message me and say, “Thank you so much for the support group. It was so healing, but I wanted to share, I also lost a baby at 18 when I was unmarried and I chose to have an abortion.
And I am grieving that baby as well, but I'm too ashamed to talk about it in a support group,” because I think there's a fear that sharing that you've made this choice will be upsetting and insensitive to the women who have lost a baby for natural reasons.
And I remember, after I lost Bridget, feeling this unfairness to my loss, feeling like, “Well, I'm a quote-unquote ‘good person.’ I'm a Christian. I wanted my baby. Why did I lose my baby when other women are making this choice to abort their babies?” And that was really hard for me, the unfairness of it.
But as God has healed my heart and I have had this compassion toward women like yourself who have experienced this, because there is so much deception around it and spiritual warfare around making that decision, I really have such a soft spot in my heart, how strongly I feel about my pro-life views, just how important it is to minister to these women and say, “Your baby is just as valuable as any other baby. Your baby was made in the image of God, has an eternal soul that will live forever in Heaven, and through faith in Jesus you can be redeemed and restored into a right relationship with God and you can see your baby again forever.”
And so there is so much hope and healing in your story, and I'm so grateful that God brought you to this place where you could bring your secret out into the light and find healing. So would you talk about: How does God set the captives free from this grief? Because you talked about how it really is a spiritual battle. So how do you combat those lies from the enemy and work through this place where you can find healing?
Misty Phillip: [00:31:50] Yeah. I think it begins with Scripture also says for us to take our thoughts captive because the battlefield is in our mind. And we have to know the Truth of God's Word so that we can compare it with the lies that the enemy is trying to tell us, because the enemy doesn't come to us with these elaborate, far-out lies.
They’re slight truths, but then if we start to spin those things around in our head, they can take us off on a trail. So we have to take our thoughts captive.
But one of the verses that I love the most is in Revelation 12:11, and it says that, “We overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony.”
So Jesus did it all for us on the cross. He paid the price so that we could have forgiveness and redemption, but it is when we share our testimony that we help others. That's part of our healing process as well.
So I say taking my thoughts captive, being in the Word, being in prayer, listening to worship music, sharing my story, even though it's difficult and painful to bring all this up, if I can share my testimony and it can help even one person to get freedom, then it's worth it. And so that's how we overcome.
Ashley Opliger: [00:33:13] I love that you talked about how you have to know God's voice in order to recognize the voice and the lies of the enemy, because if we don't know our Bible and we're not in the Word and knowing what the Truth is, it will be easy for us to be swayed from these slight truths. Because, like you said, Satan is very tricky and conniving in the way that he whispers these lies.
And so for us to know what a counterfeit is, you have to know what the real thing is. And I use this example, I'm writing a book as well, and my Dad, he's a guitar player and he's played guitar his whole life. And he bought a custom Les Paul, I don't know if you know what that is, but a Les Paul, which is the best of the best for electric guitars.
And so he bought this on Craigslist, which is red flag number one. Right? But he got it back to Kansas because he had driven out of state for it. And anyway, when he started playing it, he was like, ”This doesn't sound right,” because he had spent so many years playing the real thing that he immediately knew, “Something sounds off.”
Then when he started studying it. He compared the fake Les Paul to a real one. He realized the knobs at the top where you tune the guitar looked different and the serial bar on the back was different. And there were just all these very slight, very small differences that if you were to just look at the picture of the fake Les Paul on Craigslist, you wouldn't be able to tell it was a counterfeit. But when you compare it side by side to the real thing, you can see, “Okay, this is a fake.”
And so the point that I make in my book is you have to know the real thing and you have to spend time with the real thing, which is God, in order to be able to recognize when something is not right and when it's a lie.
And online, there's a little chart that says God's voice versus Satan's voice, and so we know God's voice is always going to be in alignment with His character and with His Word. He's never going to condemn because the Scripture says there's no condemnation in Jesus Christ.
And so if you're hearing something with condemnation, that's not from the Lord, but if you're hearing conviction, that would be from Jesus. And I think that helps us understand, is this God or is this the evil one, who is always trying to thwart the Truth and get our hearts to go away from God?
And so I want to talk now about after Liam passed away and you were at a different stage in your spiritual journey. You were walking with God, you were ministering to other people, and had this really strong faith and understanding of where Liam was in Heaven and that you wanted to share the Gospel with everyone.
And so as you're in this redemption phase of your story, what encouragement would you have for women as they're walking through their healing to get to a place where they can share the Gospel and proclaim the Good News and comfort others the way they've been comforted by God?
Misty Phillip: [00:36:06] Yeah. I would just say it's okay to grieve.
I think that in our culture, in our society, we don't have a lot of room to grieve. In the Bible, they would have set amounts of time that people would grieve. So first of all, when we experience loss, we have to grieve that loss, but then we give that grief to Jesus, and then we can exchange that pain and that grief for His love.
So when we cast our cares on Him, that's what the Bible tells us to do, cast our cares on Him, He is faithful, like you said, to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness and to heal our hearts.
And I think that's what I would say is to grieve, and then to know that you are loved. And let the Lord heal all of the brokenness within you, because sometimes it's not just the loss of our baby that we're grieving. There may be other losses in our life that we never grieved, as well. So when we open up our hearts to truly let the Lord heal them, then we are equipped to help a sister who's walking through that valley of the shadow of death.
Ashley Opliger: [00:37:27] Amen. Well, would you share how our listeners can get connected to you, your website, your social media channels, also, if we have anyone that's interested in how they can find more information about Spark?
Misty Phillip: [00:37:41] Yeah. I have two websites, just to make things all complicated. The first one is mistyphillip.com. There you will find the book that I wrote, The Struggle is Real: But so is GOD. It's a Bible study on overcoming the struggles of life. And so if there's anyone who's stuck in the struggle, I recommend getting a copy of that.
There you'll also find my podcast, By His Grace, and sometimes when I have things to say on my blog there, but what really keeps me the busiest is Spark Media. You can find out more about Spark at sparkmedia.ventures.
Like you said, we have a conference, we have a magazine, we have a small community that I teach and train and coach, and we have a lot of stuff going on with Spark. So you can find me online everywhere as Misty Philip and Spark Media. The website is sparkmedia.ventures.
Ashley Opliger: [00:38:35] Thank you so much. Well, I just love Spark Media and I'm so grateful for all the ways that you pour into the Christian podcasting world. It's definitely blessed this podcast and I've gained a lot of wisdom from you and from the community So thank you so much.
And thank you for sharing your story. There's so much power in talking about the dark and hard places of grief in our hearts. And so I pray that your story would really shine a light for others to feel like they can start to open up and share and bring their pain to God. And so would you close us in prayer as we end our episode together?
Misty Phillip: [00:39:12] Absolutely, I'd be so honored.
Heavenly Father, thank You so much for this time. I thank You for Ashley and I thank You for the work that she and her team are doing to pour into the hearts and minds and lives of women who have lost.
Your Word says that You came to bind up the wounds and that You are near the brokenhearted and that You came to set the captives free. So I pray if there is any woman who is listening that still needs a healing touch from You, Father, that You would show her how much You love her, how greatly that You love her.
If there is anyone listening who is held back by the shame and guilt of an abortion, I pray that You would bring healing and freedom in their lives so that they can walk in all that You have called them to. And so Father, we repent of our sins. We turn away from our sins and we ask for You to bring healing in Jesus’ Name.
Ashley Opliger: [00:40:16] Amen. Thank you so much, Misty.
Misty Phillip: [00:40:19] Thank you, Ashley.
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Thank you so much for listening and sharing. Until next time, we will be praying for you. And remember, as Jesus cradles our babies in Heaven, He cradles us in hope. Though we may grieve, we do not grieve without hope.
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