Sanctity of Life Sunday is January 20th. As the day approached I asked myself “Why am I pro-life?” It wasn’t something that happened over night. I wasn’t intentionally raised to be. So, what was it? For me it was a process of tears and revelation.
I never really cared. I didn’t care what a woman did with her body. It wasn’t any of my business. Besides, I questioned if the unborn were really alive. Although I was a Christian, I was content with believing, “I wouldn’t want it to happen in my family, but I have no say in what others do. They should be free to choose.” It wasn’t an uncommon way of thinking. It seems to be pretty common.
Not that long ago God began to dismantle my stronghold beginning in 2011. God took me on a journey through His word that gave me new insight into the purpose of family. It is the subject of a book that I wrote titled, The Elisha Principle: Revival through Sonship, which I will self publish this year. Learning about God’s heart for marriage, children, and the family opened my heart to to the issue of abortion.
One evening, I was spending time with my friend and pastor when one of his daughters asked about the book I was writing. I explained it was about how God uses spiritual adoption to restore inheritance to those who may not have come from Christian families. And my heart was that the black community especially would grab a hold of the principles. After she listened to my explanation she mentioned a conference that was coming up in the area. It was a conference about how abortion disproportionately affects the black community. There was an opening in my schedule, so I went. It far exceeded my expectations.
I was floored. Here’s a short video that was presented at the conference. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rix6XHw7IxI . It was more than statistics and numbers. I had the opportunity to hear testimonies of women who had gone through abortions and those who were faced with the choice. I met people who are on the frontlines caring and ministering to hurting families. I heard of how God can restore the most shattered heart. God used that conference to plant a seed in me. Although all of this was eye opening information, God nailed it to my heart, by what happened next.
It was about 5 in the morning when my wife excitedly woke me up. She said, “Its positive.” My eyes strained to focus on a white stick that she was waving in my face. “What?” I replied sleepily. “It’s positive, I’m pregnant.” It took a while before it finally sunk in. I’m just no good before 7am. When it finally did, I immediately went into daddy mode. You, know worrying. We became parents the moment we learned she was pregnant.
I was so excited to learn that we were pregnant that I bought a camera. I used my wife to set our friends and family up so I could record their jubilation as we told them the news. Our friends were so happy. I caught them jumping up and down, crying, shouting, and laughing as we told them the good news.
Unfortunately, we lost that baby. And again later in the year we lost a second. I remember talking to my wife Charmayne in the doctor’s office as she explained how “empty” she felt just before the miscarriage. Somehow, before the first sign of trouble, she knew when the life inside of her was no longer there. We grieved for a long time and in many ways still are, but through it all God is good and will be glorified in good times and bad. If you are one of those who ever wondered if a man feels the loss of an unborn child I can tell you, that I feel like an orphaned parent.
The immense value of life was imparted to me through those experiences. During the last presidential election my number one issue wasn’t the economy, or taxes, healthcare, or war; it was life. Our country has gone through and will go through times of economic hardship. There will be other military conflicts. Democrats and Republicans will still point their fingers at one another. Now, all of these seem small to me when over a million children are loosing their lives. I’m proud to say that last year was my first year as a life voter.
I understand why many unbelievers do not valuing the unborn like I do. It is the Spirit of God that gives revelation. Although it is important to point out that there are many who value life with no religious basis at all. My frustration is with believers. Like Paul says, “For what have I to do with judging outsiders.” There are many people who like to use that verse without acknowledging the rest. Paul goes on to say in the same verse, “Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?” (1 Cor 5:12). I use to get fiery over the subject with other Christians. Since then, my frustration has been replaced by grace. God gave me grace in my ignorance. It wasn’t even a year ago when He changed my heart.
However, grace doesn’t stop me from sharing my story, articulating my point of view, supporting political candidates, policy, and organizations that share my heart. In fact, I believe that grace is the catalyst for my fervor. Reflecting on his own sinful behavior Paul said, “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord who has enabled me, because He counted me faithful, putting me into ministry, although I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an insolent man; but I obtained mercy because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of the Lord was exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.” (1 Tim 1:12-14). Grace empowered Paul to work harder, spend more time with the Lord in order to bring about change to his culture.
I cannot sit on the sidelines. The abortion option has already robbed me of several family members. James 4:17 tells me, “Whoever knows the right thing to do and does not do it, for him it is sin.” Grace empowers me to show mercy, be patient, and just as important get to work to change a culture for what I know to be a righteous cause. This is why I am pro-life.