Friday, December 1, 2023

Part 1 of an #Interview with Camille Cates, Author of Moving Forward After Abortion


Part 1 of an Interview with
Camille Cates, Author of
Moving Forward After Abortion

Even though each woman’s story is different, the challenges that follow an abortion can be similar. Counselor Camille Cates has spent nearly three decades counseling women and helping them to answer these questions. In Moving Forward after Abortion: Finding Comfort in God, she speaks to women who may be facing hurt, confusion, and unanswered questions after an abortion, helping them find grace and mercy in God’s love. She helps readers to see that God is forgiving, gracious, merciful, and loving and offers comfort to those who come to him to experience restoration instead of brokenness.


Q: Could you share a little bit of your own story and why you have such compassion for women who have had an abortion?


I was twelve years old when I came to know Christ while I was at a summer church youth camp. But I went home after that experience and didn’t have any one-on-one discipleship. My family life wasn’t really centered on Christ and no one taught me how to cultivate my relationship with Christ. 


When I got into high school, I began dating and became sexually active. Midway through my junior year, I became pregnant. The young man with whom I became pregnant didn’t want anything to do with me or the baby, so I was on my own. My parents eventually found out that I was pregnant and my mom asked me if I wanted to have an abortion. I told her, “No. I want to keep my baby.” Thankfully, my parents were supportive, I graduated a year early, and two weeks after my baby was born, I began college full-time.


I was trying to get my life back on track but still craved a romantic relationship and wanted my daughter to have a father. I began dating another young man who seemed to care about me and my daughter, and our families had similar values. We became sexually active, and I became pregnant again. We were considering getting married, but when my parents found out, they began pressuring me to have an abortion and questioned how we were going to raise two children while we did not even have stable careers yet.


However, we never came to a decision together as my boyfriend next did something that turned my world upside down. One evening, he was watching her while I was at work. My mom came up to my workplace and told me that I had to come to the hospital because something had happened to my daughter. I found out that he had sexually assaulted her and had shaken her to death. She was gone. He was arrested, and I was alone . . . and pregnant.


We hadn’t even left the hospital yet and my parents started pressuring me to have an abortion. The days after my daughter’s death were a blur. I really wrestled with the Lord and was drowning in grief and confusion. I succumbed to the pressure and had an abortion four days after burying my daughter.


My life spiraled for a few years, but God brought me back around to him and his faithful love. I ended up getting married, but my previous abortion was wreaking havoc on our marriage. God evidenced his love and grace to me again when he helped me to find biblical healing through a Bible study written to help women who have had an abortion.


Seeing God work so incredibly in my life through his Word really fostered compassion in me for other women who have had an abortion to experience hope and healing in Christ. I began to share my story with others as well as how the gospel of Jesus radically transformed my ashes into beauty for God’s glory.


Q: Each chapter addresses a common question that women ask following an abortion. What are some of those questions you cover in the book?


There are seven chapters, and each chapter title asks a different question that so many women I have counseled have asked:

Who Can I Turn to after My Abortion? is meant to guide women on the importance of seeking help first and foremost from God, then being able to share their thoughts and struggles with a trusted friend, pastor, or counselor.


Is God Going to Punish Me for My Abortion? is a prominent question in the hearts and minds of women who have had an abortion. This question is answered by looking at God’s nature, his care for his children, and his goal to change us to be more like Christ, not punish us in anger.


Why Can’t I Just Move On? was meant to address why many people who have experienced abortion feel stuck. The reason this happens is often due to trying to justify their decision to abort. I explore what God’s Word says about the desires behind their abortion so that they can begin moving forward.


Will I Ever Stop Feeling This Way? discusses the complexities of emotions a woman (or man) feels after an abortion and how to work through and respond biblically instead of either being driven by their emotions or feeling numb in trying to suppress them.


What Do I Do with These Thoughts about the Baby? guides the reader to biblically process their grief and aids them in acknowledging and celebrating the personhood of his or her aborted baby.


Why Am I Struggling with Forgiveness? exposes the myth of self-forgiveness, which many women have believed is essential to moving forward after abortion. Instead, it helps them to believe in and accept God’s forgiveness. Additionally, this chapter encourages the reader to extend forgiveness to those who were involved in the abortion decision.


How Do I Leave My Abortion in the Past? Helps the reader identify how the past might be affecting the present, especially within marriage, parenting, and sexual purity. It also leads them to discover the importance of sharing their testimony of what God has done to heal (sanctify) them from their abortion.


Q: Of course, we focus on the stories and emotions of the women who have had abortions, but what about the men you refer to as the forgotten fathers?


Abortion impacts men too, the forgotten fathers of an abortion decision. Whether they pressured the mother of their child to have an abortion or they were helpless as she made the choice without considering how it would affect him, men need to biblically process their abortion experiences too. They are often hurting and live with incredible guilt and shame, and many have the same questions that the women do but they have never been able to voice them to anyone. It’s important to remember that both the mother and father are impacted by the sin of abortion.


Q: Many women who become Christians after having an abortion fear that God will punish them for what they did. What encouragement do you offer them in letting go of that fear?


In Moving Forward after Abortion, I challenge the reader to consider the nature of God. It’s important to understand that God doesn’t punish us as our sins deserve because judgment fell on Jesus on the cross. It’s vital to understand the difference between punishment and God’s design for discipline in our lives. He disciplines his children because he loves us. “Is God Going to Punish Me for My Abortion?” is a great chapter to dig in to find comfort from God’s Word by looking at his loving nature and discovering how he sees us in spite of our sin.


Q: Can you talk about the importance of acknowledging and grieving your baby?


Some women and men who have experienced abortion never acknowledged their baby. They seem to think only of the abortion as an act that occurred. It’s as if they have never stopped to reflect on the nature and personhood of their baby or even the fact that it was their baby that was aborted. For those who had abortions further in the past, it could have been harder to think about abortion as ending the life of their child because ultrasound technology was not very advanced and it was not as easy to see the personhood of their unborn child (especially when they were coached to believe it was a simple cluster of cells). Now we have advanced technology that enables us to see the features of a baby in the womb and know that a heartbeat, brainwaves, and more occur at a very early age of gestation. Not only that, but from Scripture we see that life begins at conception. The Bible relates conception to personhood. In the Old Testament, the word conception means to be “with child.” In the New Testament, the word root word for conception means “to receive a person.” 


Acknowledging that abortion caused the death of your baby brings the freedom of being able to grieve the loss of that child. For many who chose abortion, they don’t believe they have a right to grieve over their loss because they caused it. But it is good and right to grieve over what God grieves over and he grieves the loss of your baby. He welcomes you to grieve with him over that loss and to let him comfort you as only he can.

Moving Forward after Abortion: Finding Comfort in God

Ask the Christian Counselor Series

By Camille Cates

September 5, 2023 / Retail Price: $11.99

Print ISBN: 978-1-64507-312-3

RELIGION/Christian Ministry/Counseling & Recovery

Click here for the full interview.

Read a Preview

About the Author

Camille Cates is a biblical counselor and a public speaker with a passion for ministering to women in crisis. She has written and spoken extensively on the topics of pregnancy care ministry, post-abortion trauma counseling, sexual abuse, and God’s design for sex and sexuality. 


She is the author of Moving Forward after Abortion and the minibook Pregnancy Crisis: This Wasn’t the Plan


Cates and her husband, Troy, have three adult children and reside in the metro Cincinnati, OH area. 


Learn more about Camille Cates and her story at You can also find her on Facebook (A Gritty Gospel Life) and Instagram (@agrittygospellife).

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Fractured Lies (Lantern Beach Exposure) #RomanticSuspense


Fractured Lies 

(Lantern Beach Exposure) 

March 29, 2023

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

A Family for the Orphans: An Uplifting Inspirational #Romance (Triple C Ranch, 2)


A Family for the Orphans: An Uplifting Inspirational Romance

 (Triple C Ranch, 2) 

November 28, 2023


This inspirational romance gripped my heart with the cover and title. It was a touching story from the heartbreak with the children to a delightful heartwarming tale.  Heidi Main penned just the right amount of drama, emotions, and characters that were realistic. There is a theme of wanting the best for the orphans along with letting go of personal dreams to fulfill what God truly called Walker and Trisha to do. The faith message is clear that with God at the center of a life the impossible can happen. I look forward to the next visit at the Texas ranches Main has in her stories.


I received an early copy of the book without any obligation to write a positive review. I have expressed my own thoughts.

Monday, November 27, 2023

Capturing Hope (Heroines of WWII) #historical #WWII


Capturing Hope 

(Heroines of WWII) 

November 1, 2023


Crouch captured the history of Poland invasion in 1939 with her well researched history and brought this part of WWII to life. The heroine and hero were complex with characteristics surviving multiple obstacles and aiding others. Their compassion for innocent children shined brightly. There were several unexpected events that gave way to one earth shattering read, along with suspense, traumas, faith and budding romance. I appreciated how Crouch ended the tale in her epilogue.


Thank you to Barbour Publishing for a copy of the book without any obligation to write a positive review. I have expressed my own opinion.



Sunday, November 26, 2023

Joy Filled Greetings By Sharon Musgrove #devotional #Sundaythoughts

Joy Filled Greetings

By Sharon Musgrove



“This letter is from James, a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ. I am writing to the “twelve tribes”—Jewish believers scattered abroad. Greetings!”

James 1:1 NLT



Vacationing on the Hawaiian Islands is a true delight!  Sunshine, warm ocean breezes and vibrant blue waters are a soothing balm to my frazzled mainland soul.  Conversely, the zesty pineapple and sweet papaya revive my taste buds during winter’s lull in fresh produce at home.  It is a sensory feast that contrasts the gray days of Oregon.


While I delight in all the tangibles, it’s the Hawaiian “Spirit of Aloha” that I desire most.  This spirit of aloha is a lifestyle of love and unity the people embrace.  The Hawaiian word Aloha is associated with hello and goodbye, but also means love, kindness, compassion, and grace.  So, when greeted with, Aloha, it is more than an acknowledgment that we see each other.  The heart behind the word says, May there be friendship and love between us!


I want in on that.


It turns out, the early church also had a single word of greeting that included in its meaning, not only love, but the good news of Jesus Christ!  “Greetings” is the Greek word “chairein,” which also means rejoice!


My favorite use of this word in the New Testament occurs in James 1:1 (NLT) (italics mine): 


“This letter is from James, a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.  I am writing to the “twelve tribes” —Jewish believers scattered abroad.  Greetings!”



There are two amazing things about rejoice as a greeting here.  First, James describes himself as being a slave of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ...and he is happy about that!  James writes to Jewish refugees, a people ousted from home, with generations of oppression in their history.  Yet he reminds and encourages them with a good news attitude.  Rejoice! 


Secondly, James continues, post-greeting, to encourage believers by suggesting they should consider the trials they continue to encounter as “opportunity for joy.” 


Wait, what? 


“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.  For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.  So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.”  James 1:2-4 NLT


How, on earth, do you rejoice when feeling cut to the bone? 


James reminds that while we reside physically in a world that hurts us, God is using that hurt to spiritually heal us by making us less like people who persecute, and more like Himself.  Allowing God to work in us, we’re moving ahead in His Kingdom, rather than squirreling in a cage.  He brings His Kingdom to earth, through His love working within us.


That is our sunshine on a dark day...our trip to Hawaii in winter . . . Jesus Christ died and resurrected for the reconciliation of the world!  Man unified with God and unified with one another, sounds like paradise! 


Can you feel the sun and taste the pineapple? 


When focused on the dark days, we tend to forget the good news our faith promises.  We need to participate with a more constant reminder of God’s “Aloha Spirit”.


So, what if we change our greetings to help us remember God’s Kingdom ways?  What if we lead with a salutation that is encouraging, both to ourselves and our neighbors?  One that reminds the truth of the Spirit of God?  Would you see rainbows on your stormy days?


Let me be the first.... 


My name is Sharon, and I am writing to you, my fellow follower of Jesus . . .  rejoice!

Author Bio:


Sharon has been writing and teaching biblically based curriculum, Bible studies, and devotionals since 2007.    


She has had the unique position of writing curriculum and teaching for two private, Christ-based, residential recovery programs. Both programs primarily served women in the homeless community.


Sharon has traveled multiple times to Kenya, serving on medical teams and teaching in the rural Maasai communities. She’s been privileged to speak in Leadership camps intended on encouraging and empowering the impoverished, underprivileged, and often abused young women.


Within these ministries, Sharon has witnessed the transformative power of loving words spoken to the broken-hearted. Sharing God’s love and witnessing its transformative power has become her passion.


Sharon and her husband, divide their time between Oregon and Hawaii. They have two grown children. 


Currently, Sharon is encouraging others via her inspirational blog, but prefers sharing face to face. Additionally, she is working towards a degree in Ministry. 



Connect with Sharon:







Friday, November 24, 2023

Julia Monroe Begins Again (Beignets for Two) #womensfiction #chicklit #romance


Julia Monroe Begins Again 

(Beignets for Two) 

October 24, 2023

Part 1 of an #Interview with Camille Cates, Author of Moving Forward After Abortion

  Part 1 of an Interview  with Camille Cates,  Author of Moving Forward  After Abortion Even though each woman’s story is different, the cha...