Walden: Children are a gift from God

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, September 29, 2010

“Children are a gift from God” was the message given by guest speaker Kirk Walden at the 16th annual Sav-A-Life banquet.

Walden, president of LifeTrends in Goodl-ettsville, Tenn., and former professional golfer, walked banquet attendees through the story of how God used him in the ministry and proved that message to him.

Walden spoke of how when he was teenager he ran from God, but eventually the Lord used his sister to get him on the right track.

“I wanted to play golf, and I told God, ‘I want to play golf, and I don’t want you to get in the way,” he said.

Walden said that when he began looking at colleges, no one was knocking on his door for him to come and play golf. His sister invited him on a road trip that would change his life forever.

“It was to go with a college group from Auburn to the beach my senior year,” he said. “I took my Bible with me that my sister gave me, and I couldn’t get enough. That weekend, the Lord began to change my life.”

Fast-forward several years, when, at the age of 28, he became the executive director of a women’s pregnancy care clinic. It was there that he learned just how precious every child is and that, “where we are weak, the Lord is strong.”

The ministry grew through the years, with nine out of 10 mothers choosing life once they saw their baby on the ultrasound, he said.

When Walden’s wife left him with three young children to raise on his own, he said, “I decided to quit on the inside, but my Sunday school group would not let me give up.”

But his story has a happy ending, he said.

Walden has since remarried, and he and his wife, Jennifer, have added two additional children to the pack, which is a miracle in itself, after Jennifer overcame ovarian cancer.

Walden said it’s through the last two pregnancies God has shown his that “children are a gift from God.”

Walden issued a plea to event-goers to become a Sav-A-Life partner in some way.

“I’m not going to ask you to do something I’m not willing to do,” he said. “Sav-A-Life is in need of a new ultrasound machine.”

Walden said new machines cost $30,000, and said the organization needs about $15,000 for marketing.

Sav-A-Life of Covington County is an interdenominational non-profit Christian ministry committed to helping pregnant women make the choice of life. The ministry sees approximately 100 visitors per month, and, according to literature handed out at the banquet, four future mothers have changed their minds about having an abortion already this year.

“I’m talking about Sav-A-Life becoming the first choice for everyone with an unplanned pregnancy,” Walden said. “We’ll remind everyone that children are a gift from God, and their children may be their gift to a family who can’t have one on their own.”

The Rev. Larry Cummings, director of missions for the Covington Baptist Association introduced Walden; the Baptist College of Florida Praise Team provided special music during the banquet; the Rev. Clyde Northrop, former chairman of Sav-A-Life board of directors, gave the invocation; Amy Davis, executive director of Sav-A-Life gave a video presentation; and the Rev. Jimmy Allen, pastor of the First United Methodist Church of Opp and Sav-A-Life board member, gave the benediction.