Throughout the nation, on a January Sunday – close to the date Roe v. Wade was first handed down – churches observe Pro-Life Sunday.
Some display roses on the steps leading up to their stage, in remembrance of the lives abortion has cost us. Others bring in a speaker from a crisis pregnancy center, to allow churchgoers an opportunity to find out how they can be involved. A number of pastors preach riveting, hard-hitting sermons – full of truth, reality, and a call to action. Many, all too many, fail to do anything different at all on Pro-Life Sunday.
Last Sunday, I was inspired when I walked into a church that boldly announced on a large banner that the unborn were part of their Justice and Compassion ministry. Along with the homeless, jobless, fatherless, and poor were the unborn. And this isn’t what some might call a small, “radical” congregation. It’s a large church, located in the suburb of a major city.
And the unborn were right there, boldly – dare I say, proudly – displayed for all to see. They weren’t relegated to the back of the church or the back of churchgoers’ minds, as all too often happens. Anyone taking a stroll through the lobby would be privy to the banner announcing that the unborn are a part of this family, too.
When one member suffers, we all suffer. When one member cries out for help, each one of us ought to answer. As a little card I picked up explained, “Start serving now! Walk. Love. Act. It’s what we do.” The key verse for this church’s ministry is Micah 6:8. The church paraphrases it on the little card: “Do justice. Love mercy. Walk humbly.”
Yes. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes.
What a call to the churches of America – and the world – in this day and age! Do justice. Do it. Don’t merely believe it. Don’t only speak it. Do it. This means getting dirty, getting involved, getting busy. Getting justice done requires action on our part, and it’s not always easy. What action might you or your church take to do justice for the unborn? Find ideas here, here, here, and here. Support mothers through an Embrace Grace or Teen Mother Choices International group. Learn how to help fathers stop abortions.
So far, this church has partnered with just one crisis pregnancy center, and it already has quite the list of opportunities for its people:
- Serve on the focus team
- Make quilts for newborn babies
- Become a volunteer advocate for the clinic’s clients
- Answer the helpline
- Serve as an office receptionist
- Be a mobile clinic driver (an awesome mobile ultrasound unit!)
- Organize the layette closet
- Teach an abstinence and life skills program
- Be on the prayer team
- Serve as church ambassador
- Help fundraise and organize special events
Love mercy. Love it. As Christians, we believe that God loves each one of us – the pro-life activist, the mother who just got an abortion, the single teenage mom, and the Planned Parenthood abortionist. And the mercy of God is what delivers each one of us from making the wrong choices; it’s what brings us to turn from the wrong choices we’ve made and to seek our Savior’s freely offered forgiveness. If we truly believe in this mercy, we must love it, extending it freely as a representative of Christ to everyone we meet.
Walk humbly. Indeed. Truth without humility is often ill-received. The truth on abortion is obvious, once the issue is studied. The pain women experience is plain to see. The number of deaths is staggering, daily. It’s painfully, obviously, truthfully wrong. And we must strive to present this to our culture in an ever-humble way.
This church I walked into on Sunday is on the road to changing America. Person by person, neighborhood by neighborhood, campus by campus, and on it goes. Would that every church and pastor in America would see abortion as an issue of justice and compassion – one that we are compelled to get involved in.
“Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter.If you say, ‘But we knew nothing about this,’ does not He who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not He who guards your life know it? Will He not repay everyone according to what they have done?”
Interested in finding out how and why churches can speak out on a “political” issue like abortion? Go here for the facts, to get your questions answered, and for legal help.