Day 22 – October 17, 2012

I know I’ve mentioned this before, today, being Wednesday, is the day that the babies are delivered by dismemberment in Germantown and I was so grieved for the lives of these children today.  I have no idea how many children died in Germantown this week, but just one is too many.  This morning was very different for me, something I’m generally not used to doing.  The Lord had me keep a silent vigil this morning in honor of those who died today.  I didn’t pray anything this morning, I just was there in silence and after about a half an hour I decided to read the scripture.  I felt impressed to read the book of Habakkuk, which is probably not one of those books that is read so frequently or that one would just of think of reading as I did this morning.  But, as is so true with the Lord, it was the right book to read today.  The book only has three chapters, so it’s a quick read.  Habakkuk’s name means to wrestle with or embrace as in a particularly bothersome issue, i.e. ABORTION.  The prophet attempts to explore the issues of why God has allowed evil.

A study by Hampton Keathley at Bible.org does a good job of looking at the book of Habakkuk and explaining the idea of questioning God or wrestling with God over the evil and injustice seen in the world and why this okay to do.  But more than that, this book is about faithfulness.  It is about the faithfulness of God to redeem His people and bring justice where there is evil and it is about the rewards we receive for being a faithful people.   I must remember to remain faithful to that which God has called me and recognize His sovereignty.  I must also realize that the answers I want may not come when I want them or in the way I want.  It is important to remember that God does not condone evil and His will be done on earth as it is in Heaven!  By the end of the book Habakkuk was able to see this and proclaim praises to God.

Though the fig tree should not blossom
And there be no fruit on the vines,
Though the yield of the olive should fail
And the fields produce no food,
Though the flock should be cut off from the fold
And there be no cattle in the stalls,
Yet I will exult in the Lord,
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
The Lord God is my strength,
And He has made my feet like hinds’ feet,
And makes me walk on my high places.

Habakkuk 3:17-19

Day 21 – October 16, 2012

Some days just feel like they are  far more difficult than you think they should be and this morning was one of those mornings where prayer was very difficult.  I was not understanding at first why today just felt so hard.  I’m mean, I’ve had a few days, so far, where prayer seemed like more work than usual but today was different. Today, I felt almost stuck.  I felt as if I had been silenced.

About half way through the hour I came to some conclusions.  First, this week, I’m focusing my prayer on the women who have abortions and who’ve had them in the past.  But the main difference of course in Germantown is that you really only get one shot at seeing a woman change her mind.  If someone is not able to reach her on a Sunday in Germantown, before she goes into the clinic, then the damage is done and there is no going back, there is no changing your mind, this woman now has a dead baby in her womb for three days until it is delivered on Wednesday.  The second conclusion I came to this morning was that I was feeling completely hopeless.  Why was I there today, there was nothing that I could do to change the situation this week.  Today, I could really feel the atmosphere of death.  My heart just ached for these women though.  How many of them must have gone through this process and in doing so wished that they could change their minds?  How many women have suffered through those three days after their baby has received the fatal injection of  Digoxin hoping they weren’t carry a dead fetus in their womb?  I would dare say that many found themselves in that place over the years.

But what about that hopelessness I sensed today?  The Lord is gracious and He reminded me that He is victorious, that He is risen, and that He has conquered sin and death.  Is He saddened by all of this?  Yes, of course He is.  But everyday, I receive email reports that provide updates around the world from the various 40 days for life campaigns that encourage me when I read about the number of lives that are saved.  I’m encouraged every time I hear about even one woman who changes her mind, walks out of Carhart’s clinic, and instead walks across the parking lot to the office of Germantown Pregnancy Choices where she will find out about real help and real options that will save her life and the life of her baby.  I’m sure those moments also make the Lord happy.

As we persevere in this fight for the lives of the unborn “let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” (Galatians 6:9)

Day 20 – October 15, 2012

The start of new week in the 40 day journey means a new focus for prayer.  This week my focus will rest on those who’ve had abortions.  I will be using the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary  (the resurrection, the ascension, the descent of the Holy Spirit, His glorious return*, and His reign over all the earth*) this week as I focus my prayer on the women who have had abortions.

This morning I spent the majority of the time meditating on the resurrection and on how that applies to the situation at hand.  Jesus, who willingly went to the cross for us, for our salvation did not stay on the cross or even in the tomb but on the third day HE ROSE AGAIN!  As I began to pray for the women who’ve had abortions, particularly here in Germantown, I became painfully aware of how spiritually dead these women are and how much they are in need of a resurrection.  They need a re-birth!  Those who promote abortion as something acceptable and justifiable and who claim that there is no repercussion as a result, I’m convinced, are hiding behind their own pain and trying to convince themselves, along with everyone else, that there is nothing to this act of murder that was just committed.  That might be an easier sell when trying to convince someone in the very early stages of pregnancy – you know, the whole lump of cells argument – which is really no argument, but that’s for another discussion.  But here in Germantown, when the babies are delivered by dismemberment every Wednesday, you have to be so emotionally shut down and spiritually dead to be able to walk away from that scene, what else could you think?  These women are in need of a resurrection in their spirits; they are in need of a re-birth.  They need to be awakened, not only to the great offense they have committed against their creator, but also to the healing and reconciliation that is available to them as well.

Below is a devotional by Kevin Burke, Executive Director of Rachel’s Vineyard Ministries that touches on this idea of seeking healing and restoration for women who have had abortions.

INTENTION

May the King of the Universe, who entered this world as a helpless infant, give us the humility to be healed.

SCRIPTURE

My power is made perfect in weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

REFLECTION

The great mystery of the Humility of God is very near and dear to the mission of those serving in pro life and in a special way, post abortion ministries across this nation.

For those wounded by their participation in abortion, the door to healing often feels like crossing an abyss of great fear: fear of judgment, fear of being torn apart by the pain, by self hatred and rage at those who hurt and abandoned you, and manipulated you in your time of temptation.

The door to healing is humility. It is born in the inability to no longer control the pain, to live with the consequences of that tragic decision to reject life. The heart cries out, “I have committed a grave offense against my Creator and I am consumed by regret, grief and sorrow!”

Jesus proclaimed, “I am the Vine, you are the  branches” (John 15:5). To bear the greatest fruit, the branches must be pruned. Each level of pruning of the vine requires a deeper level of humility so that we can abandon ourselves to His will.

This is not a lofty theological concept as much as it is an earthy experience of pulling weeds, tilling rocky soil, pruning and healing the vines. “If a man wishes to come after me, he must deny his very self, take up his cross, and begin to follow in my footsteps” (Matthew 16:24).

PRAYER

Lord, during these forty days, we ask that with each day of this sacred vigil, everything in us that separates us from your perfect will would be pruned from our hearts and souls.
In this blessed freedom may we experience a powerful anointing of your Holy Spirit. Filled with confidence and trust may we proclaim with the mother of Jesus, “Let it be done to me, according to your Word.”  We pray also for those who have participated in abortion, that they might find a way to humble themselves and come to you.

(*these last two glorious mysteries are not those traditionally used)

Day 18 – October 13, 2012

Today marks the end of another week in the 40 days for life campaign and a week with prayer focused on the abortion clinic worker seeing the light of Christ.  This morning, as I walked up and down the sidewalk, the Lord gave me prayers for workers in the abortion industry but also for the city of Germantown.  I began to pray that the light of Christ would shine down on the city of Germantown and that all who lived in this city would be affected by this light.  I prayed that the Germantown itself would become a City of Refuge, a place of healing for those caught in this industry.  God set apart cities that were called Cities of Refuge when the land was being divided up among the Israelites.  These cities were specifically created for people to flee to when they killed someone (Numbers 35).  Now the idea behind these cities was to protect someone who accidentally killed another person, which sadly is not the case with the abortion clinic.  There is nothing accidental about the act of abortion.  However, God is merciful and ready to forgive us the minute we turn to Him.  This is why I prayed that the light of Christ would invade the city of Germantown and why I prayed that it would become a city of refuge.  When people leave the abortion industry it is because their eyes have been opened to the truth of what is going on around them and because of that they need time and space to heal and to overcome any guilt they may find themselves feeling.  Please continue to pray for the abortion clinic worker, that they will have the courage to leave the industry and that the light of Christ will shine brightly in their lives.

Day 17 – October 12, 2012

As the week draws to a close I continue to pray for the clinic worker at the Germantown clinic and especially pray for this new worker who began working there this week.  I pray that she will have the courage to stay away and not return to the clinic next week.  I pray that she will be influenced by the light of Christ, even after only one day in Germantown.  I believe that she can and was affected by His light.

Today I would like to share a devotional by Father Frank Pavone from Priests for Life

INTENTION

May all understand more deeply that the pro-life message is rooted in the two basic truths of life:

There is a God

He isn’t me

SCRIPTURE

And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. Genesis 2:7

REFLECTION

From the beginning of the Bible until the end, the theme is echoed that God alone has dominion over human life. He made it; shared it; died to save it; will raise it up forever.

The act of creation described in Genesis 2:7, and earlier in Genesis 1:26-27, is a sovereign act. God did not have to do it, and would have been happy forever without us.

Yet without our asking for it or earning it, God brought us out of nothingness and into life, and sustains our existence at every moment. And He does so in Christ. “For by Him all things were created…in Him all things exist” (Colossians 1:16-17).

“You are not your own,” Paul declares in 1 Corinthians 6. God alone owns us. While He entrusts us to the care of one another, He does not allow any human being to own another.

A Southern California abortionist, James McMahon, once explained how he justified killing children after 20 weeks gestation by partial-birth abortion.  He did not deny that this was a child, but rather asked, “Who owns the child? It’s got to be the mother.”

The struggle over abortion is really a struggle over the dominion of God. The Christian individual, and the Christian Church, cannot sit idly by when others declare that God is not God.

PRAYER

Lord, we are yours. Thank you for breathing into us the breath of life. Thank you for claiming us as your own. May our words and actions in defense of human life proclaim to all the world that you alone are Lord of life and death, Lord of our freedom and of our choices. We pray in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Day 16 – October 11, 2012

I have to say that I really love it when I find out that I am on the same page with God!  Yesterday, I wrote about how I prayed for a miracle, for just one person who would receive the gift of courage to walk away from the abortion industry forever and last night I received an email from the Germantown Campaign Director who wrote the following:

“Praise: Two of the workers from Germantown Reproductive Health Services have not been there for over a month and we believe they have stopped working for Carhart.  Praise God! Please pray for the two workers that have left (as well as those that remain).”

Amazing right, I know!  So, now the second part of his email was a continued prayer request which is:

“Prayer: A new clinic worker started work at the abortion facility today.  Please pray that she was horrified by what she saw on her first day.  For those that don’t know, Wednesday’s are the day that the babies are dismembered and delivered piece by piece.  Please pray that she was so disturbed by what she saw today that she will quit and not come back on Monday.”
 
I will continue to pray for this woman who started work at the clinic yesterday.  I know that it can be tough to find a job in this economy these days, so I’m sure that even if she was horrified by what she saw yesterday, quitting a job, any job, takes a lot of courage.  You never know when you will find another one.  I recently watched a video that Abby Johnson made which was directed toward clinic workers, and in that video she said, none of you, as a little girl or a little boy said that when you grew up you wanted to kill babies.  When I heard that statement, I was completely blown away.  I had never thought about the life of a clinic worker from that perspective.  Of course that’s true. No one would ever consider this as a child and say this is what I want to do when I grow up or aspire to a career in the abortion industry.  More than likely, the person who works in the abortion clinic or with Planned Parenthood ended up there because they were looking for a way to help women and thought this was the way to do it.  Now they are trapped and can’t get out or think they can’t get out.  But God is greater than any circumstance and it’s our job as believers, when given the opportunity, to show the love of God to people in such a way that all fear is disarmed. 
 
Please pray for this new employee at the clinic and all of the employees that they will find the courage to walk away from the horror of abortion.
 
For God has not given us a spirit of fear,
but of power and of love and of  a sound mind.
2 Timothy 1:7
 

Days 14 & 15 – October 9-10, 2012

I’m once again writing for two days since I did not have the chance to write anything yesterday.  Sometimes our prayer times are just not that exciting and we do not always receiving exciting revelations or pray exciting prayers.  Yesterday was that kind of day.  I showed up on time, I prayed through the Luminous mysteries of the Rosary and tried to meditate on them as best I could, but I will admit that my mind wandered quite often and I had to keep trying to re-focus myself and stay on track.  Yesterday was a day that I will have to believe that something was still accomplished in the heavenlies simply because I chose to keep a commitment because it is the Lord who is faithful and according to 2 Thessalonians 3 it is the Lord who will establish me and guard me from the evil one!

Today, I’m happy to say, was quite different.  I felt encouraged, almost energized during my prayer time this morning.  As I prayed this morning I had a real sense of expectation today; a sense that there has been a spiritual break-through in Germantown.  The Lord was giving me wonderful prayers to pray this morning for the clinic workers.  While reflecting on Jesus as the Light of the World, I prayed earnestly that as each individual, who works at the Germantown clinic, arrives for work today and encounters someone on the sidewalk from 40 Days for Life, that they will be overwhelmed with the light of Christ in that person.  I don’t know how many people work at the abortion clinic in Germantown.  It may be only a couple of people or it may be 10 people, but, one thing I do know is that beginning today, those individuals can no longer ignore the people praying on sidewalk in front of the clinic because the light will be too bright!  I asked the Lord for a miracle today.  I asked that at least one person would receive the courage needed to turn away from the abortion industry forever. 

 

“It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer;

he enables me to stand on the heights. He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze.

You give me your shield of victory, and your right hand sustains me; you stoop down to make me great.

You broaden the path beneath me, so that my ankles do not turn.”
(Psalm 18:32-36)

Day 13 – October 8, 2012

Today is the start of a new week and a new focus for prayer.  This week I will meditate on the Luminous mysteries of the Rosary.  This set of mysteries is somewhat new for the Catholic church.  I’m not sure exactly when they were added but they were not part of the standard set of mysteries that existed when I was a child.  These mysteries are meant to reveal Christ as the Light of World and indeed He is!  His light is so greatly needed in the dark places of the abortion clinic.  It is only His light that allows us to see in those hidden places as the Lord reveals to us how we should pray.  The mysteries are:

  • The Baptism of our Lord
  • The Wedding Feast at Cana
  • The Proclamation of the gospel
  • The Transfiguration
  • The Institution of the Eucharist

These are all significant moments in the Lord’s life on earth.  The proclamation of the gospel obviously being more than one moment in His life.  My focus for prayer this week is on the clinic worker. I was reflecting on the strategy that the pro-life movement has used since the mid 1980’s when the first crisis pregnancy centers opened their doors.  The focus has been on the moms and saving the babies, which is certainly a right strategy and an effective one.  But I believe a new strategy is beginning to emerge that will also be instrumental in bringing down abortion and that is to focus on the clinic worker.  The clinic worker, the person on the inside with the first hand knowledge of exactly what is going on behind the closed doors is the very person who will be able to effectively and convincingly change the minds of all those who are so entrenched in the culture of death.  The clinic worker whose life has been touched by the light of Christ is the very person who will be able to talk to women who so staunchly believe that their right to choose must be maintained at all costs.  It is the clinic worker who has walked away from the abortion industry who can tell the real truth behind this industry.

I was reminded this morning during prayer of Abby Johnson, a very brave and courageous woman who was the director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas.  As the light of Christ touched her life and opened her eyes to horrors of abortion, she walked away from it all.  Now as she walks with the Lord, she has a ministry specifically to those clinic workers who want to leave the industry – And Then There Were None .

Pray this week with me for the clinic workers in Germantown, that the light of Christ will touch their lives and that they will walk away from the abortion industry forever.  Pray also for Abby Johnson and her ministry to those seeking to leave the abortion industry.

Day 12 – October 7, 2012

Sunday, October 7, 2012, day 12 of the 40 days campaign and also the restarting of the abortion process all over again at the Germantown clinic.  I was remembering this morning that Dr. Carhart starts the 4 day process on Sunday with the women who come to the clinic today.  Sunday is not only the first day of the week it also marked the day of our Lord’s resurrection.  Sunday is a day to remember that the One who died for us, who died willingly to save us, is now raised from death to life everlasting.  But, in Germantown it is a day that signals death for the innocents who go unknowingly to their demise.

Part of the gospel reading for today was taken from Mark 10:13-14 – “Then they brought little children to Him, that He might touch them; but the disciples rebuked those who brought them. But when Jesus saw it, He was greatly displeased and said to them, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God.”  I was reflecting on these verses in this context today and just prayed that there would be children to come to Him.  I prayed that there would be many more survivors of the abortion holocaust who would have the chance to live and know the Lord.  This January will mark 40 years since the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision and since that time over 50,000,000 children have succumb to this holocaust.

Lord Jesus, may this be the year that we see an end to abortion.

Day 11 – October 6, 2012

Today started out as I had planned.  I woke up early to go and pray before the clinic but enemy had other plans. He thought that he could thwart prayer to end abortion and for the salvation of souls simply by causing a small mishap with a vehicle.  He is not very bright, nor is he very creative.  I was on my way to the clinic and I blew a tire on the highway – I was fine, the car was fine, just a bit inconvenienced.  I was able to pull off the road safely and figure out what I needed to do and then just wait where I was for someone to come and change my tire.  But, what the enemy hadn’t realized was I COULD STILL PRAY!  It didn’t matter that I wasn’t physically in front of the clinic – prayer can happen anywhere.

I will go off topic slightly today because something is on my heart that I would like to write about.  I was reading this morning in The Message out Luke’s gospel and Jesus said “Get ready for trouble. Look to what you’ll need; there are difficult times ahead. Pawn your coat and get a sword. What was written in Scripture, ‘He was lumped in with the criminals,’ gets its final meaning in me. Everything written about me is now coming to a conclusion.”  I believe we may need to consider taking this scripture to heart given the times we live in.  If things in this country do not turn around we will be looking at difficult times ahead.  If the church remains complacent too much longer about the abortion issue it will see other unwanted invasions.  Right now our religious liberty is at stake with the current HHS mandate as it is written which provides for tax payer funded contraception, abortion-inducing drugs, and sterilization.  By virtue of the fact that ALL employers, including those religious convictions go against such things, must provide these must provide these at no cost to their employees, they believe they would be forced to go against their conscience.  Many Christian employers have already filed law suits against the government. If these employers hold fast to their convictions and do provide their employees with insurance they will be fined and the fines will bankrupt the companies.  This kind of government coercion in America is unheard of.  Last weekend a movement began in Washington DC that I pray will continue, no matter the outcome of the election.  That movement is known as ActsFive29, which taken from the scripture is referring to Peter standing before the Jewish Council and declaring that they will obey God rather than men when it comes to unjust laws.  The church of Jesus Christ can no longer sit by idly while these things happen.  We will be like the frogs in the slowly boiling water, never aware of how hot the water is getting until we are suddenly cooked.  I would challenge anyone reading this blog today to watch the movie For Greater Glory.  Here is what is posted on the movie’s website:

What price would you pay for freedom?

In the exhilarating action epic FOR GREATER GLORY an impassioned group of men and women each make the decision to risk it all for family, faith and the very future of their country, as the film’s adventure unfolds against the long-hidden, true story of the 1920s Cristero War ­the daring people¹s revolt that rocked 20th Century North America.

This movie is based on a true story on something that happened virtually overnight less than 100 years ago!