The God of Encouragement in the Fight for Life


I admitted up front in last Sunday’s sermon, “What To Do About Things Like Abortion and Racism,” that every year I struggle more with this particular message than any other. The challenge of speaking from the Bible to complicated subjects like abortion and racism for Sanctity of Human Life Sunday surpasses any other preaching assignment I know of in terms of degree of difficulty. I never feel adequate for the task, but press ahead nonetheless given the stakes.

However, my heart soared after the service when approached by a newcomer to OGC. She wanted to thank me for the message. She told me she had driven by the building often and considered visiting but felt especially drawn to our service yesterday. The story she told me made the “why” plain.

A single mom, she shared with me with tears in her eyes that just six years ago she visited the abortion clinic up the street where we and folks from other churches engage in sidewalk counseling to offer people like her alternatives to abortion at crisis pregnancy centers. She intended to abort her child. The counselors on sight called out to her and she responded. She turned around that day, spared her baby’s life, and has been raising her child ever since.

I say to every one of us with a burden for the unborn and the dear people so conflicted and bound by idols of the heart that they can somehow justify child-killing that every effort made to intercede and intervene counts. Do not give up. Persevere. Your efforts matter. You never know what God will do. Fight the good fight. Even just one precious life rescued is worth the price.

How to Pray in Light of Abortion

Another Sanctity of Human Life Sunday is upon us tomorrow.

If you wish to meditate in advance on my text for the sermon, please see Genesis 9:1-7. The title of the sermon is Why God’s Blessing Means Making Babies Not Murdering Them.

I don’t know about you, but I struggle to know how to pray redemptively in light of the scourge of abortion beyond the obvious.

Scotty Smith, pastor of Christ Community Church in Franklin, Tennessee, a frequent blogger for the Gospel Coalition, posted a helpful piece entitled A Prayer of Advocacy for Unborn Children. In it he expresses the following concerns and requests:

  1. For the courage and compassion to live as faithful advocates for human life.
  2. For the gospel compassion necessary to care for the women and men whose stories are marked by abortion – either as victims or agents.
  3. For wisdom to know how to love and serve those who have had to give up their children before birth to the heartbreak of miscarriage and stillbirth.
  4. For grace to open our hearts and homes to the millions of orphaned children who have made it safely into the world – that our zeal against abortion be matched by our zeal for adoption.

To read his entire prayer, which I wholeheartedly commend to you, click here.