Wednesday, 02 December 2020

Five ways people in the pro-life movement enjoy privilege (but not the kind you might think)

Last week, I wrote a post expressing appreciation for the great work done by folks at pregnancy help centers across the country and around the world. 

In that same spirit of thanksgiving, I want to express my gratitude to God for calling me to pro-life ministry.

Having been born to Christian parents, I came to faith in Christ early in life. As an adult, I continued practicing the already-established habit of commitment to church volunteerism. 

I still love and value ministry within the local church, but I feel honored and grateful that God called me to serve outside those four walls too.

Because I dedicate time, creative energy and financial resources to pro-life work, I enjoy certain privileges.

I’m not talking about the kind of privilege which comes at the expense of others and evokes outrage. I’m referring to the honor of being allowed to participate with God in what He wants done. 

Here are five ways those of us involved in pregnancy help ministry enjoy the privilege of working with and for our gracious God:

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1. We have the privilege of upholding the truth of human value to an unbelieving world 

Amidst all the shouting and confusion about what constitutes a human right or not, we quietly and firmly uphold the ultimate standard of God’s Word. 

As our Creator, God alone has the right to place value upon us. He does so without prejudice or bias. He does not give one group rights at the expense of another group. 

Every human being is created in God’s image, is loved by Him and deserves dignity, honor and protection from the moment of conception (Genesis 1:26-28; Psalm 139:13-16). 

This is the truth we live out every day.

2. We have the privilege of speaking up for the voiceless

The theme of God’s great concern for the vulnerable, marginalized and oppressed is woven throughout Scripture. 

“Provide justice for the needy and the fatherless; uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute. Rescue the poor and needy; save them from the power of the wicked.” –Psalm 82:3-4.

Who is more vulnerable than a tiny, preborn child? Who is more oppressed than this most fragile people group?

Tweet This: ”Who is more vulnerable than a tiny, pre-born child? Who is more oppressed than this most fragile people group?”

As followers of Christ, we are commissioned to speak on behalf of those who are voiceless and defenseless—and the work we do is the very first line of defense for the whole human race.

3. We have the privilege of being Jesus’ hands and feet to those facing unplanned pregnancies 

We come alongside women and men facing unplanned pregnancies without judgment. 

We offer compassion, accurate information and free services so they can take hold of the hope they need to make a pregnancy decision they can live with for the rest of their lives.

We do this because of Whom we follow.

In the fourth chapter of the Gospel of John, Jesus has a remarkable conversation with a Samaritan woman. He addresses her despite cultural taboos about male rabbis talking to women (and half-Gentile ones at that). 

The subject matter ranges from drinking water to her relationships to proper modes of worship.  By the time the conversation is over, this woman, up until then a social outcast, ends up evangelizing her entire town (John 4:39)!

Was she aware that Jesus knew about her secret burden of shame? Absolutely (John 4:29). Did she feel judged and condemned? Absolutely not. 

Her encounter with the Messiah filled her with hope and gave her a whole new sense of purpose and direction.

How many times have we seen the same thing happen in the lives of the young women who come to our centers? 

How many times have we watched as shame and fear lose their grip in the light of fresh hope?

How awesome is that?

4. We have the privilege of extending grace to those who’ve made regrettable decisions

Sometimes those who come to us don’t end up making a hope-based decision. They act out of desperation and cave in to the promise of a (supposedly) quick, simple solution. 

This may happen after a visit to our center to inquire about pregnancy options, or it may have happened many years earlier.

Here’s the thing:  a past abortion makes room for a beautiful opportunity. 

If you were to ask me, “What’s the most dramatic way you’ve seen the gospel radically transform a life?”  I would answer without a blink, “The healing power of Christ in post-abortion recovery.”

You’ve seen it, too. Guilt and shame are washed away as a heart becomes securely rooted in the love of Christ. Depression lifts; joy returns. Anger evaporates and love shines in its place.

The transformation is so dramatic you have to see it to believe it. And we get to be a part of this!

5. We have the privilege of working with brothers and sisters outside of our comfort zone

The Body of Christ is one big, global, wonderful, messy family. We may not agree on all the negotiables, but we all belong to Jesus. 

I love the way the pro-life movement brings very different churches together for a common cause. 

I smile at the way we’re enriched when men and women, young and old, Catholic and Protestant, and those of every race come together to work shoulder to shoulder for the sake of all humanity.

“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!...For there the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.” –Psalm 133:1

In these ways and more, it’s such a privilege to invest in the protection of our preborn. 

Susanne Maynes

Susanne Maynes is an author, speaker, and biblical counselor who served at a pregnancy help center for ten years. She blogs about church & culture and spiritual growth at SusanneMaynes.comHer educational devotional, Unleashing Your Courageous Compassion: 40 Reflections on Rescuing the Unborn, uplifts and strengthens the pregnancy help community. Susanne is currently pursuing a Master of Theological Studies degree at Regent University.


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