As an avid sports fan and a former “athlete,” (I use quotation marks because while golf requires athleticism, I was an exception to the rule), I learn many of my life lessons from sports analogies.
Here’s a lesson: Keep practicing your strengths.
In any sport, there is never a point where one can say, “Oh, I do this part well; I can let it go for a few weeks.”
No way. For instance, if a football team is effective with “Play X,” they practice it even more so that it becomes an unstoppable weapon in its offensive game plan. They want to be so good at Play X, even if the defense and every fan in the stands believes the play is coming, they will still advance the ball.
It’s the same with other sports. I enjoy softball; my university has a strong women’s softball program so it’s fun to watch. It’s fascinating to see a pitcher with an effective “riseball” fire that pitch over and over. The batter knows it’s coming, the coaches know it and the fans know it.
But sure enough; the pitch starts low, the batter swings mightily . . . yet when the ball reaches the plate it rises above the bat and the hitter is swinging at empty air. It’s a strike, and even if the pitcher spends most of the day with the riseball, hitters are confused and frustrated.
The Pregnancy Help Community does many things effectively. While we all need a kick in the pants at times to improve where we are weak (another column for another day), we can’t forget what we do well.
When we find those things we do well, let’s celebrate them, share them with our supporters, and without apology, tell the world we do them better than those who oppose us.
You want to know one of many things we do well? We do “Selflessness.”
There’s no reason to explain this; let’s just throw out an example:
A year ago, Lifeline Pregnancy Center in Cuba, Mo. experienced flooding and needed help. An article in Pregnancy Help News simply shared their story of determination to rebuild. Pregnancy Help Organizations and others from all over were selfless. They forgot about their budgets and bottom lines and chipped in.
As noted on this site Tuesday, $30,000 poured in.
The reason is simple. We do “Selfless” well.
Tweet This: Nobody's interested in watching our defense. They want to know what we do well. #prolife @KirkWalden
In March, I was in Minneapolis for an event with Robbinsdale Women’s Center and saw the same selflessness. Executive Director Peggy Benicke was completely transparent with her audience, telling them the mobile unit they purchased—when they sat down and completed an honest evaluation—was not having the impact they intended.
This isn’t about the effectiveness of mobile units; many, many centers are seeing great results. But because of weather and other issues (and the fact that Robbinsdale Women’s Center is already across the street from an abortion clinic), RWC found going mobile was not the most effective use of their funds.
What impressed me is that Peggy didn’t hide this from an audience who had invested in this unit. She told the truth, then showed us what selflessness is all about.
Peggy thought about selling the unit; it would make sense from a financial standpoint. But when a pregnancy help center in Louisiana was flooded and needed a temporary home, Peggy saw a fit. Her center donated the mobile unit to the center in need.
Selflessness. Not surprisingly, Robbinsdale Women’s Center had one of its best fundraising events ever. Those in the audience could not wait to support a ministry defined by thinking of others.
There is not enough room on this entire site to document all the stories of one center helping another; of our ministries reaching out to the hurting with incredible support above and beyond even what we advertise and promote.
We spend a lot of time defending ourselves; the abortion industry makes outlandish claims and works tirelessly to pass laws and shut us down. Interestingly, the same industry screams like hyenas when asked to maintain common health standards, but I digress.
Most reasonable people however, are not interested in watching us play defense. They want to know what we do well, and we have so much to share.
One characteristic we need to share? Selflessness. It’s not prideful or unsavory to say, “We believe in giving. We believe in encouraging and supporting. We believe in walking the extra mile to help someone who is hurting. It’s who we are as the pregnancy help community.”
Really, it’s okay to shout this from the rooftops.
We do “selfless” well. Let’s keep at it. Let’s tell others why we are selfless.
If we do, just like the football team with the great play or the softball pitcher with the powerful pitch, we’re going to be hard to stop.