It had been a particularly stressful season at the clinic. We were getting weird phone calls from fake clients, our latest event was not the great success we hoped for, and we were experiencing tension between staff members.
Of course, these trials were in addition to the interesting things that happen on a daily basis when you reach out to folks facing unplanned pregnancies.
Pro-life work is not for the fainthearted.
During challenging times, when opposition is evident but the fruit of our ministry is not, we do well to remember for whom we do this. We can’t afford to lose focus. We can’t forget that, ultimately, all our efforts must be motivated by obedience to our loving heavenly Father.
Here’s the thing: God is well pleased with the work done by local pregnancy centers. I can think of at least ten aspects of this work which make His heart glad.
1. God appreciates and rewards courage. Those who do pro-life work demonstrate courage just by being involved. In our culture of death, this is hardly a glamorous, popular ministry. Speaking up for those who have no voice takes bravery—sometimes because of face-to-face conflict, and always in terms of spiritual warfare. God lists cowardice among some pretty serious sins (Rev. 21:8). He likes our courage because it demonstrates our faith in Him.
2. God is pleased with obedience. The reason for the existence of pregnancy centers is our conviction to obey the Law above the law. We follow God’s commands above human law, which, in the case of abortion, makes provision for the intentional killing of innocent human beings. God’s Law protects all His image-bearers, born or unborn, and it is this Law we uphold daily.
3. God wants His mercy to be made known. Pregnancy centers reveal God’s merciful nature by offering compassion to both the unborn and their distressed parents. Your actions say something about the nature of God, who first describes Himself in Scripture as “…the Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious…” (Exodus 34:5-7). The Hebrew word for mercy in this passage is similar to the word for “womb.” How fitting to display the mercy of God by protecting those still in the womb.
4. God wants post-abortive people to be healed. Pregnancy centers use the language of mercy when talking about the potentially triggering topic of abortion. Your kindness in this regard draws post-abortive individuals to seek healing instead of hiding—and when they do, you lead them into the mercy and freedom found in Christ.
5. God values human beings. Pregnancy centers realize that pro-life ministry is not just about rescuing cute little babies; it’s about rescuing people. Lives and destinies hang in the balance. Tomorrow’s men and women are in danger of being killed before they are born, let alone grow up to adulthood. You work to do this ministry as effectively as possible, not because you think baby clothes are sweet and you enjoy bundling diapers, but because every preborn person matters to God.
6. God wants the gospel to be shared. You know that God wants none of His pre-born children to be offered up on the altar of “choice.” You also know that God does not want anyone to perish with regard to their eternal destiny (2 Peter 3:9). Your work not only saves the lives of the pre-born, but offers life to mothers, fathers, and children which is abundant and eternal—a life found in Christ alone.
7. God wants to rescue a broken generation. As pregnancy centers rescue the lives of the pre-born and minister abundant life to their mothers and fathers, they also reach out to a generation which has experienced more chaos, confusion, and heartbreak than any previous one. You wade into the mess of today’s bewildering sexual landscape and offer compassion and wisdom to young people who have lost their moral compass and any hope for real, healthy, lasting love.
8. God wants to transform human communities. This is what pregnancy centers do every day, one conversation at a time. You speak blessing over those who come into your center, no matter if their background is generational poverty, or their family members struggle with addictions which have landed them in the local jail or hospital again and again. You know these patterns aren’t inevitable in the lives of your clients because you know the power of the gospel.
9. God wants the local Church to reach the local community. Pregnancy centers provide a wonderful bridge between those who are part of the local Church and those who would never darken the door of a church. You provide a safe place where distressed women and men can come and receive compassion, hope and help—a place where they can see what the Christian faith looks like, and a place where they can come to know Christ.
10. God wants His Church to function in unity. Pregnancy centers bring together many different types of Christians for the cause of life. Fundraising banquets, Walk for Life events, and even the daily work of a center—all of these bring believers from many churches together. God finds this “good and pleasant” (Psalm 133:1). He is honored when we set aside our differences to serve Him shoulder to shoulder.
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These are a few of the reasons why God is pleased with what pregnancy centers accomplish every day. So take heart. No matter how challenging your work, God is well pleased.