An impressive show of solidarity and independence had over one million Spaniards in the street, protesting the government's proposal to liberalize abortion laws. Although the EU/UN does not have an official mandate of abortion advocacy, both organizations have pressured member states, especially developing nations, to change legislation in favour of open access to abortion.
(h/t BIG BLUE WAVE)
We pray for the conversion of all those who refuse to acknowledge that human life belongs only to God.
Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations."
-- Jeremiah 1:4-5
To be or not to be? There is no question!
The question of "being" is something philosophers have long pondered. What is the meaning of being and what is the source? In the passage before us, we have our answer. We have being because we are known by God.
For God to declare that he knows and sets apart the prophet Jeremiah even before he is conceived indicates that our being rests in God's own being. Because He is and because He wills we, therefore, are and do. The Apostle Paul says as much when he declares before the philosophers of his day, "In Him we live and move and have our being" (Acts 17:28).
One of the tragedies of the abortion culture is that life in the womb has been so heartbreakingly devalued. To embrace the arguments of the "pro-choice" crowd one must conclude that the child in the womb doesn't exist, isn't there, has no being. But nothing could be further from the truth. That child is known by God and, as such, has being.
Lord God, we confess that in You we live and move and have our being. Because You are, we are. May we find grace from You to affirm the being of every human and may we labor to make this truth known to the world around us. Amen.
Rev. J. Kirk van der Swaagh
Pastor, Conservative Congregational Christian Conference
40 Days For Life
Pray that God will continue to bless the efforts that have gone into the 40 Days for Life campaign, as we trust Him for the results.
Now these are Your servants and Your people, whom You have redeemed by Your great power, and by Your strong hand. O Lord, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who desire to fear Your name.
-- Nehemiah 1:10-11
Nehemiah provides an awesome blueprint for volunteers in God's service, particularly those responding to the devastation abortion has caused our nation.
Nehemiah grieved for God's reputation as he witnessed the condition of the city walls of Jerusalem. The walls were broken down which was seen by neighboring people as a sign of weakness on the part of Jerusalem's God. No wall meant no security for the city and its people.
We learn from his story that he covered every detail in prayer; inspired others to join the cause; organized others to help do the work; confronted opposition directly and turned to God when discouraged; and finally celebrated what was accomplished and gave God all the glory!
Like Nehemiah, we must acknowledge God's sovereignty as we serve Him before a mocking world. We too need to be reminded that we are "fighting" for our families. We too must have an attitude of confession and repentance before a Holy God. We must pray for strength, refute slander, and not be diverted from our work.
Like Nehemiah, we will draw attention from the enemy when we are seeking to protect the well-being of God's people. We too must stand firm and seek God's help to persevere until the task is done. We too will be victorious.
Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in heaven and in the earth is Yours. We pray for your continued guidance and protection throughout the remainder of this 40 day campaign. May we be steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in Your work, knowing that our labor will not be in vain. We pray in the name of Jesus, amen.
Co-host, "Point of View" Talk Show
40 Days For Life
From Halifax, Nova Scotia:
Ellen has been working with Campaign Life Coalition for 20 years now, and she is a veteran in Nova Scotia's pro-life movement. She was there on McCully Street when the Morgentaler clinic was in operation. She organizes every Life Chain in the fall and every March for Life in the spring.
And now she is the organizing force behind 40 Days, she keeps the schedule humming and she makes countless phone calls to fill the vigil hours.
Here is what Ellen has to say about her experience with 40 Days for Life:
Dear vigil attendees,
The 40 Days for Life campaign is a focused vision to access God's power through prayer, fasting, and peaceful vigil at the site where abortions are committed. Our presence is a strong witness that we abhor the killing of pre-born children and are offering up to God our prayers for the souls of these children and also our prayers of repentance, asking God to turn hearts and minds from a culture of death to a culture of life.
When I arrive at the vigil site, I immediately feel a sense of calm. I usually walk up and down carrying the small sign while listening to Christian music, unless it is raining, at which time I sit under the umbrella and pray. One very rainy morning, I arrived rather early - 7:30 am - and did my walk about. After the "early bird" attendees left, I sat under my umbrella and prayed, and prayed, and prayed some more until I realized that an hour surely must have passed. I had forgotten my watch and my cell phone had died so I checked with a worker near by, and indeed my hour had finished and I was now into the next. 2 l/2 hours passed before someone else arrived - and you know what? - I didn't feel anxious or angry that I had been there that long. In fact, I felt so blessed and refreshed. You see, I'm a very busy person - I spend most of my time working out of my home for Campaign Life doing pro-life work, as well as church work, all in between running with my children. And although I attend Mass daily, rarely, if at all, do I spend time in quiet prayer - one on one with the Lord. So this day I thought .... the Lord wants us to come to Him and He is calling me to a deeper prayer life! I believe the forgotten watch and dead cell phone was a message for me to stay put and continue praying. So I thank God for the "no-shows", which allowed me to stay quiet and know that He is near.
The V.G. Hospital site is a place of Grace where we are indeed walking on Holy ground in the spirit of our Lord. Abortions are performed there daily and even when it rains, so be faithful to your commitment and don't let the devil get you down!
God bless, Ellen
Many of us know community organizers like Ellen Chesal. They sacrifice in their own daily lives striving to save the lives, and souls, of their fellow man. Let's get behind these people by putting our own selves 'out there'. Let's make some real communities.
We pray for the strength to love those who do not love us.
But the Lord said "You have had pity on the plant for which you have not labored, nor made it grow, which came up in the night and perished in the night. And should I not pity Nineveh, that great city, in which are more than one hundred and twenty thousand persons who cannot discern between their right hand and their left, and much livestock? Should I not be concerned about that great city?"
-- Jonah 4:10-11
God doesn't value people and things like we do. Jonah loved a shade tree more than an entire city of sinful people. We love our dogs more than a terrorist. We love our cars more than a beggar on the side of the road. And sometimes, we love our money more than a child growing in a desperate teenager's womb.
But God isn't like us. Genesis 1 tells us that humans were the capstone of God's creation. We were created on the sixth day after God had completed the land, the stars, the plants and the animals. Therefore, His love for us is greater than His love for a plant, an animal, or any other created thing. And the book of Jonah tells us that He loves even the most sinful people and seeks to bring them into His merciful arms. And it's a love that seeks to touch all of his created children: that desperate teenager, the baby growing in her womb, even tyrants and terrorists. So it's up to us to imitate God's merciful love by helping and praying for those who persecute us, and those who don't love us back.
Gracious God, loving our enemies seems like one of most difficult things you could ask of us. Please remind us that this is how you love and that if you ask it of us then you will give us the grace to do it. This we ask through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Lutherans for Life representative to the National Pro-life Religious Council
40 Days For Life
Those European megalomaniacs just can't stand independent thinker Vaclav Klaus. With Ireland's second-vote cave-in, they're feeling their oats.
France and Germany want to stifle the freedom of the Czech people's choice....so what's new!?
May those who hold life as trivial realize that we live because God wills it so.
Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this, in His hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.
-- Job 12:9-10
Job was a man acquainted with grief, trials and tribulation. He had everything taken from him, including his family. He endured sickness, ridicule and judgment from his friends. Everyone gave him advice about his situation, questioning his spirituality and his God. Job's circumstances were bad but he never loses faith. Why? Because "the hand of the Lord has made all life." Created by God, he knows his life has meaning and purpose, regardless of the circumstances.
In our present culture, we've lost that basic truth; every life is made and allowed to live by God's sovereign authority. As people who pride ourselves on our independence, we have a hard time acknowledging our dependence on God. From our creation, when we were knit together in our mother's womb to our last breath, God's word is clear that "in His hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind."
It's time for us as individuals, and as a society, to recognize that we exist by God's grace and turn back to Him, honoring His word and His teachings. Why? Because our world is full of Jobs, people who are dealing with trials and tribulations and hurting desperately. Job's response should be ours as well. Regardless of what we face (even an unplanned pregnancy) God in His wisdom and mercy will redeem it. How do I know? Job's friends who doubted God's sovereignty cry out to God asking for help, God instructs Job to pray for his friends and after he does, God restores all that Job had lost. In other words, because Job never lost faith and knew and trusted His Creator, the Lord blessed Job.
Thank you Father God for being the Creator of my life and every life. Please give me, and the society in which I live, an appreciation for your gift of life. Please help us set aside our pride and acknowledge that we need you. Show me how I can honor you today in response to all the blessings you bestow so freely. In the name of Jesus, amen.
President, Anglicans for Life
40 Days For Life
Pray that we each will daily put on the full armor of God, so that we are strong in the Lord and the power of His might.
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day and having done all, to stand.
- Ephesians 6:12-13
I am confounded to see how the battle over the issue of life is perceived more often in churches today as political rather than spiritual. Ironically, the enemy has used this twisted perception to silence many in the body of Christ. We must see the battle for what it is and if we are to be prepared to face the spiritual enemy on the issue of abortion, we must daily "put on" the armor God has given us:
* Gird your waist with Truth (vs. 14) - Commit your emotions to believe truth and to speak truth, regardless of the repercussions.
* Put on the breastplate of Righteousness (vs. 14) -It will protect our hearts - the innermost springs of our beings - from all unrighteousness so evident in this fallen world.
* Shod your feet with the preparation of the Gospel of Peace. (vs. 15) -Preparation is vital if we are to be effective in God's work.
* Taking the shield of faith (vs.16) - The Accuser will instill doubt, fear, and guilt. Faith acts as an invisible shield that deflects such false accusations.
* Taking the Helmet of salvation (vs.17) - A helmet protects the head, the brain and in turn our mind and thoughts. Satan hopes we will set aside divine revelation for human reasoning.
* Taking the sword of the Spirit (vs.17) - The Word of God, the only offensive weapon in this armor, was used by the Lord Jesus against Satan. The living Word is powerful and effective.
Our armor is complete. We are ready to wage war, and the next verse tells us how, "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the spirit." (vs.18)
Dear Lord, as you lead us into the spiritual battle of abortion may we be reminded that the battle is truly Yours. We thank you for equipping us with Your armor. Lead us daily to put it on! Thank you for allowing us to serve under your command, and for hearing our requests for direction and protection. Thank you for the victory that is ours because of Your Son Jesus, amen.
Co-host, "Point of View" talk show
40 Days For Life
May God's justice sober our society, and may mercy triumph over judgment.
Surely for your lifeblood I will demand a reckoning; from the hand of every beast I will require it, and from the hand of man. From the hand of every man's brother I will require the life of man. Whoever sheds man's blood, by man his blood shall be shed; for in the image of God He made man.
- Genesis 9:5-6
The value of every human being can hardly be seen more clearly than with this verse. God, the King of the universe, has created all human beings in his image, and declares forthrightly that shedding the blood of any individual will require the blood of the one who shed it. God's concern for human beings is not limited to any particular group. Indeed, his concern is universal, and includes male and female, young and old, born and unborn, disabled and able-bodied, the citizens of every nation on earth.
Abortion, the deliberate killing of the unborn, is the shedding of innocent blood. Surely the blood of millions upon millions of innocent children cries out to God. It is true that we live in an age of grace, and yet this passage (among many other texts which express similar sentiments) should give every thinking Christian pause.
Christians of all people, entrusted with the Word of God as we are, must take a stand. We must speak out. We must do all that we can to protect the innocent, to pursue justice, and to encourage the repentance of all those who bear responsibility for this great evil. Only in this manner can we hope to forestall the judgment that must otherwise surely come.
This passage should also be seen as an encouragement to educate and disciple our children and grandchildren about what it means to be human, and the responsibility that will become theirs in this ongoing struggle.
O Father, forgive us for our lack of courage and our want of compassion for the unborn and for those lost and hurt by abortion. Fill us anew with your Spirit. Renew our minds, strengthen us in righteousness, help us be people of salt and light within our nation. May every human being, from conception to natural death, be treated with the respect due those made in your image. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Rev. John Brown
Director, United Friends for Life (United Church of Christ)
40 Days For Life
We pray for a renewal of our zeal to offer generous help to the unborn and their families.
If I have despised the cause of my male or female servant When they complained against me, What then shall I do when God rises up? When He punishes, how shall I answer Him? Did not He who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same One fashion us in the womb?
-- Job 31:13-15
The ground is level as we stand before God.
Job lived with an awe provoking sense of God's expectation of him, particularly regarding his obligation to care for the weak and needy. He knew that in God's economy everyone stands on level ground when it comes to our status as God's creatures. Because of that central truth, we must take care of each other.
Job also knew that he didn't deserve any of the good things God gave to him. Instead, those blessings came to Job from God's benevolent heart. As an extension of that knowledge, Job instinctively linked his obligation to be generous to others to God's kindness toward him.
As in Jesus' parable of the unmerciful servant (Matthew 18:23-35), Job knew that it is an egregious sin to deny to others what we enjoy ourselves. He actually calls down on his own head severe condemnation and even punishment should he fail to share with others out of his own abundance (see verses 16-23).
Proverbs 3:27 reads, "Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so." Some things are so obvious that we don't even need to pray except to ask of God forgiveness and the power to do what so obviously needs doing.
God, forgive us when we try to explain away the obligation we have to help others who need help. Enable us to not devalue them because they are in the circumstance that they are in, but to see them for what they are, those, who like us, were formed by your hand in their mother's womb. Amen.
Rev. Rob Schenck
President, Faith and Action, and National Clergy Council
40 Days For Life