A few years ago, I met a young man who was raised Catholic. Jeremy ended up coming to our church through a mutual friend, and we became friends.
Soon after, we knew we wanted to go deeper in relationship. Initially we followed the dating guidelines discussed with my parents, who are pastors.
Traci and Jeremy began dating while they were in college together (Photo Courtesy of Author)
But then it became difficult because we lived only 15 minutes away from each other, both attending the same college with a similar circle of friends. On my mom’s birthday, about five months after we started dating, I found out I was pregnant.
I had received a scholarship to Vanguard University for cross-country and my boyfriend a soccer scholarship for a college in Florida. I was scared and devastated; our congregation is huge, and I didn’t want to be judged. Jeremy decided that we should abort the baby since we were going to be concentrating on school.
It seemed like the right decision at the time, but I knew it was wrong. One night I was crying, feeling so much confusion. I don’t know how The Ramp ended up on my TV, but it did. Some of the worship and teaching programs from this house of prayer in Alabama I had heard before, but none like this one.
Lou Engle, wearing his red Life Band, preaches to students on the sanctity of human life (Photo: IHOP KC / Flickr)
Sharing how he launched Bound4LIFE years ago and mentioning his red Life Band, Lou Engle spoke about the value of every life including in the womb. He wept over the “innocent bloodshed” of abortion and said God had a plan for every child and every woman—especially to bring healing to any young mother who had made a wrong decision.
Engle said a prayer for those to repeat if they committed abortion and wanted forgiveness. I prayed the prayer, even though I had not gone through with the abortion yet, and received salvation. I called Jeremy up and told him I was keeping the baby.
Jeremy and I went through a lot together, but we ended up having our daughter Aubri. We got married soon after, with the support of our parents.
I recall telling my mom how we wanted to head up a Bound4LIFE chapter when they were ready for us. Last summer, they prayed and felt like it was time; soon we became chapter leaders.
Traci and Jeremy recently visited Disneyland with their daughter Aubri (Photo Courtesy of Author)
Our beautiful daughter will turn four years old this August. I thank God for Bound4LIFE, faithfully proclaiming a message that impacted my life—and saved our family. If it wasn’t for this ministry, our Aubri would not be here and we would not be married. I would not be the person I am today.
Traci Renteria is a wife, mother and teacher at a local Christian high school. She and her husband Jeremy lead the local Bound4LIFE chapter in Norwalk, California.