Supporting Life

Life

Our society is critical of hypocrites in general, and especially judgmental of perceived hypocrisy within the Christian community. Yet, consider the double standards espoused by our culture. And no where are they more obvious than in the area of protecting life.

Think of the convoluted logic that passes laws to protect unborn eagles but not unborn human babies. Or social mores that advocate protecting women from physical and sexual abuse, but have no problem ending the lives of females inside the womb—the ultimate physical abuse.

How is a Christian to respond to this double standard when it comes to valuing life?

Throw a pity party at the injustice of it all?

I’ve talked to many believers who figuratively and (literally) throw up their hands at the unfair way our culture treats Christians. Citing the adage, “you can’t fight city hall,” they give up. They stop voting, they stop serving, they stop interacting with society. After all, if the culture is against you, what’s the point in trying?

Gloat over those who disagree with us?

Other Christians appear to rejoice in the coming judgment of those who stand against God. They gloat about the hell and damnation unbelievers will face. Their message seems to be, “You’re making life miserable for Christians and killing babies now, but you’ll get yours!”

Shred our opponents with intellectual arguments?

I recently saw a post on social media titled, “Intellectually Shredded!” It celebrated the debate victory won by a believer over his unbelieving opponent.

Christians mock the illogical presumptions of those who live as if God doesn’t exist and claim pre-born babies aren’t really alive. They cite facts with the goal of chalking up a decisive victory against unbelieving opponents. The problem is, our motivation may deteriorate into winning the argument instead of the person.

While these options are practiced all too often, there’s a better way. The way of living with integrity, loving well, and serving humbly. The way modeled by hundreds of thousands of employees and volunteers in crisis pregnancy centers across the United States.

Living with integrity

The world is watching how Christians live. Yes, they may be watching us to catch hypocrisy, but many are watching because they want to know if Christianity is real. Do we put our money where our mouth is? We say we believe certain things, but do we live consistent with those beliefs? For example, we say we’re pro-life, but how do we support the ministries that work to protect life? Do we give of our finances? Our talents? Our time? We need to walk our talk if we’re to have any credibility with those who don’t share our beliefs.

Loving well

When Jesus told His followers to love their enemies and pray for their persecutors (Matthew 5:44), He wasn’t speaking theoretically. Jesus prayed for His executioners when He said, “Forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34 NIV).

Today, when we speak of unbelievers and abortionists going to hell, we ought to remember what D.L. Moody has been quoted as saying: “When we preach on hell, we must do it with tears in our eyes.”

Serving Humbly

One of the best examples of humble service I have ever witnessed is the work done day in and day out in crisis pregnancy centers around the country.

The work of employees and volunteers on the front lines of the pro-life effort is often unnoticed. Men and women who support those responding to an unplanned pregnancy provide counsel, support, and material resources. Clients may receive services such as pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, STD/HIV testing, and parenting classes. They offer these services without pressure in a safe, non-judgmental environment.

Equally important are the abortion recovery services offered to those who have chosen to terminate life, but then live with the physical, emotional, and spiritual consequences of their choice. Clients never hear, “I told you so.” What they do experience is love, and lots of it.

The Sanctity of Human Life is marked annually, the third Sunday in January. This year, we’ll observe it this Sunday, January 21, 2018. As you learn of the work being done in the crisis pregnancy center near you, will you do more than just listen? Will you live with integrity, love well, and then find a way to serve humbly with your time, talents, and resources?

The difference you make will last for eternity.


For or Against ?

The Christian community has taken a stand on the issue of abortion. To end a pregnancy is to end a life. Not potential life. Life. We object to abortion. We work to change civil laws that violate God’s moral law. We fight for the plight of the unborn.

The world knows we are for the life in the womb. They know we are against abortion. But do they know we are also for the mother?

Every year, more than one million abortions are performed. At least one-third of American women will have had an abortion by age forty-five.

Before we dismiss this as a problem outside the Church, surveys indicate 78% of those who have had abortions claim some religious affiliation. One survey indicates that one in five women who aborted their baby were born-again or evangelical Christians. Hundreds of thousands of women sit in church each week with a secret that is destroying them. These are women we know and love: our friends, daughters, sisters, wives—maybe even our mothers…or ourselves.

The baby in the womb is not the only victim of abortion.

Women with abortion in their history often struggle with Post-Abortion Syndrome. Symptoms include guilt, promiscuity, and suicidal thoughts. Eating disorders, emotional isolation, and alcohol or drug abuse can follow. Crying spells, depression, and nightmares are common experiences.

Yet these women struggle with connecting their past abortion to the symptoms they experience sometimes decades later. They become experts at stuffing the event behind them, convinced that what’s past is past, unrelated to their present circumstances. Even if they are saved and serving in church, they are emotionally stuck, unable to get past the abortion that altered their life forever.

Confidential abortion recovery programs provide an opportunity for women to receive the support of facilitators and peers who understand their pain. Many of these facilitators and peer counselors have abortion in their own history and have experienced God’s forgiveness, healing, and restoration.

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Post-abortion recovery classes address biblical principles that apply to all areas of life, not just abortion. Participants discuss topics such as the need for healing, the character of God, post-abortion symptoms, and the importance of forgiving and being forgiven. Forgiveness is an especially significant turning point because of the condemnation they expect from God and other people.

“Love the person, hate the sin” has almost become a cliché within Christian circles. Yet it describes our need to stand for life even as we reach out to offer healing and freedom to people shackled by the pain of abortion.

When abortion occurs, we lose a life. If Christians respond with compassion to the mother, we – and she – may gain a life: the eternal life of a woman who personally experiences God’s grace, forgiveness and restoration.

Surrendering the secret of abortion is painful, but it is a critical journey.

If you are burdened with the secret sorrow of an abortion in your past, contact a local crisis pregnancy center today. For locals on Florida’s Treasure Coast, call Confidential Abortion Recovery Experience (CARE) – a ministry of Care Net Pregnancy Services of the Treasure Coast, 772-249-2473. The call is confidential. Don’t wait another minute to begin your healing.

And for the rest of us? For or against. The world knows what we are against. Let’s start showing them what who we are for.