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Weekly Ministry Focus

The LifeHouse
Praising God for five years of miracles
by Tim Palmquist

Five years ago, we began leasing the building at 2428 H Street, strategically located across the street from the FPA abortion chamber. That first day, a couple wandered into our The LifeHouse pregnancy help center building, thinking that it was the abortion facility. A baby was saved, and we weren't even officially open. From that day to today, we continue to watch in wonder as God changes lives.

For years leading up to that day in 1998, we had dreamed of having some kind of a ministry center near the killing center. I hoped for a small office, or at least someplace to store literature. But with an annual budget of less than $4000 per year, it remained a pipe dream.

But my wife Terri always had the faith to believe that God would give us more than just a small office. As we drove by 2428 H Street, she would often say "that building will be ours someday." I would just roll my eyes and laugh.

Terri's dream seemed clearly unrealistic to me. We couldn't afford it! Besides, the building wasn't available. A psychologist had been operating a thriving practice at 2428 H Street for many years.

We tried not to alienate any of the people who worked near the abortion chamber, but this psychologist openly opposed us. When we parked near his building, or talked to his clients, he called the police. One day he arrogantly told Terri "I have so much money that I could buy this whole street if I wanted to!"

Terri responded by saying, "I'm praying that soon that will change, and one day this building will bring honor and glory to God." Within a few weeks, the newspaper reported that this psychologist was arrested for drunk driving. It was a bit of a scandal, because he had the contract with the county to counsel county employees who had substance abuse problems. The county revoked his contract, and apparently his finances began a downward spiral.

On a Sunday afternoon in January 1998, a small handful of us joined together to pray outside the abortion chamber. We were observing the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and had just returned from a memorial service for pro-life leader Bill Newsom who had died unexpectedly.

During the prayer time, Terri noticed a "for lease" sign at 2428 H Street. She became ecstatic, saying that God was answering our prayers. I was thrilled, but still cautious and somewhat skeptical, knowing that we still didn't have the resources to accomplish this.

I thought that the best we could hope for was to find a friendly business who could lease this building, and ask them if we could use one of the rooms. We contacted several people and ministries to try to interest them in the building, but God didn't seem to be moving on their hearts to do this.

Terri made a few phone calls to donors sharing her vision and seeking financial support for this effort. I was still skeptical, but as God moved on the donors' hearts, I began to see that this was His plan, not Terri's.

The past five years have been a challenge, financially and organizationally. We have continued to find it necessary to rely upon God day by day to provide for the needs of this ministry.

But as we have trusted Him, the lives of thousands of women have been touched, one woman at a time; hundreds of babies have been saved, one baby at a time (except for some twins)! Sometimes it seems to me that our biggest challenge is just trying to keep track of all that God is doing (an impossible task, I've found)!

Terri continues to have incredible faith, believing that God is not finished expanding this ministry. The building which today occupies the Family Planning Associates abortion chamber will someday bring honor and glory to God, Terri says. She also prays that a maternity home and mobile pregnancy center can be established.

I am still reluctant to overextend ourselves, but how can I remain a skeptic after witnessing the wonders God has worked in our midst?

More news from Weekly Ministry Focus Vol. 3 No. 8