Life and death

This morning my thoughts have been swirling about life and death. Last night I went to a prayer vigil at an abortion mill. I realize the mere mention of praying at an abortion facility makes the majority of people uncomfortable. Thoughts and prayers are tossed all over Facebook when a loved one dies. Even the most hardcore atheist typically accepts prayers for comfort from friends that may or may not actually lift him up in prayer. Yet, if say I was praying to the author of life for the human lives to not be led to death outside a place that leads to death, you can silence a room of Christians and expect a loud refrain of euphemisms regarding the “choice,” of women to be in charge over life or death of their son or daughter from the opposition.

I wore a shirt that said “Human Rights for All” to the vigil. My shirt elicited angry response from a woman created in the image of God that advocates for women’s “human right” to end the life of their unborn children also created in the image of God for any reason they see fit.  I do believe in human rights for all human beings regardless of any factor, starting with the most basic right to life. She wanted to know why I wasn’t at the Black Lives Matter meeting. I may have quipped that I was a bit busy taking care of the black lives that matter. All lives do matter, and anyone marginalized or in a vulnerable position is in need of extra protection.  There we agree!  Yet, that premise compels me to walk in dark places such as the sidewalk of the abortion mills. The women walking in there have heard this false narrative about choice sang out so loud and often without challenge they have become blinded to what the choice steals from them.  Both women and the children they carry need an advocate for truth and life. 

Yesterday morning I sat in the hospital room with my friend overflowing with love for her newborn baby son. This same mom was not so excited when we met on the sidewalk of the Capital Care Abortion mill six months prior. She was there to take care of a problem.  Her friend told her she'd find a solution to sad circumstances at the abortion facility.  She walked into a recovery room where the lie of what abortion offers was unmasked. She saw a mom staring at her sonogram, the image of her son or daughter that was living when the image was taken and wasn’t as she stared at it with tears streaming.  She saw another mom rocking in pain.  When she was redirected to the "right" place and was told they'd give her medication to take care of her pain and it was a safe quick procedure she recognized the pain of what the other mothers had done would not go away with a little medicine.  She bravely walked away and chose to honor the life of her son and made the best choice of her life (according to her now). The body of Christ rose up and rallied around this mom to support her as she lived out the choice to parent her son with tangible help.

As I held that little boy I could only imagine the lives he will touch. His great grandmother thanked me for helping my friend, but in reality I had little to do with it. I was praying for God to orchestrate events in a way only He could and to work in the heart of a mom willing to choose life. God gave her an opportunity to see light and truth.  She was willing to respond and the world will be different because of this one life.  His life has purpose.  The children and grandchildren he may have some day will have purpose. The son, the brother, the friend, the  the student, the employee, and the husband he will be will also influence each person he knows.  

What is the call to speak for life, for those of us in Christ? We must first remember that the battle is not against flesh and blood but rulers, authorities and principalities of heavenly realms. It’s not against the people that oppose us, but against the one that came to steal, kill and destroy. Satan didn’t tell Eve “Defy God.” He slips in doubt in asking, “Did God really say that?” He does not tell us today “Kill your son and daughter.” He says, “It’s your choice.” We are instructed to rescue those being led away to slaughter and to love our neighbor as ourselves (ALL of our neighbors). FIFTY-FIVE MILLION of our most vulnerable neighbors have lost their lives in the name of choice. We must speak the truth in love from the pulpits to the sidewalks from the grocery stores and coffee shops to everywhere conversations and life happen. We can not be quiet when the culture around us is screaming lies and half truths.

 If we are people dead to ourselves and alive in Him, we will have his boldness even when it makes others uncomfortable.  When three people are being killed a day in your back yard (Toledo, Ohio) to the violence of abortion we have no right to comfort. If we believe that whatever we have done for the least of these brothers and sisters we did for Jesus we will not be quiet. When we think about our resources we acknowledge they are gifts from the Lord, not our own.  How are you will to leverage your what you have for others to simply have life? There is an American genocide going on. While people are sitting in pews on Sundays or at worship on Good Friday others lives are being taken and often the church is too polite to talk about it.  We are not called to politeness.  We are not called to act in a spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind.  Pastors and leaders I implore you to lead by example.  Take a stand to speak and act for the least of these.  When every member of the body of Christ stands united with the power that rose Jesus from the grave we will end abortion in our nation.