Years ago while in college, on January 23rd, which is my birthday, my picture appeared on the front page of an Ann Arbor newspaper. No, it had nothing to do with honoring my birthday. Rather, I had participated in a small pro-life march across the University of Michigan campus. A new believer in Christ, I eagerly braved the snow to band with others on campus. A providential picture of the event showed me walking with a sign.
Thinking my parents would find a front page picture on my birthday cool, I brought the paper home and showed them. Their reaction was quite the contrary. They seemed upset. My usually level-headed father warned me that the FBI would keep it on file. I was told that I should not to do something like that again.
Why the strange and strong response?
Later that year I found out why. I had been an illegitimate child. How I found out was quite unusual. When I gave Mom and Dad a Bible for their twenty-first anniversary, my parents admitted they had inflated their number of married years by one. My own eyes were open to "holes" in family history and relationships. And comments I had heard over the years led me to a conclusion. Had I been conceived ten years later, I likely would not be here today.
In writing this, I have no intention of shaming my now-deceased father nor my ailing mother, whom I will be seeing shortly to honor her birthday which is today. They raised me in love in an age when out-of-wedlock births were still shameful, and I thank God for them. On that day of revelation they confessed in tears their wrongdoing and asked forgiveness, and reassurances of love and thankfulness for life were expressed. I also saw their views on abortion change.
Rather, given what my own public records clearly show, I cannot help but remember something each time the awful Roe v. Wade anniversary comes around on the eve of my birthday. Even before the Lord saved me by grace, He spared me in grace. So I should use the breath He has given me to tell others of ways to protect and promote life as I proclaim the salvation of Jesus Christ.
To that end, I wanted to point you to seven resources that will encourage you in the honoring of life and influencing of others from the womb to the tomb.
The Gospel in an Abortion Culture - Brought to my attention on Tim Challies' site, this message by Russell Moore exhorts pastors to be more careful not to preach past the people in the pews when addressing this issue.
Personhood Movement - Momentum is growing in states across the nation to recognize the unborn as a person. This site gives you the latest updates.
Reunited after 77 Years - Read this incredible story of a biological mother and daughter finding each other nearly eight decades later! Do not stories like these show that even rape is no reason for an abortion?
WORLD Articles - WORLD magazine continues to cover the pro-life battle with frontline articles that encourage and inspire. The current issue is filled with amazing stories of pro-life activism and adoption as Marvin Olasky shows.
Ministering to College Students - As my story above relates, college is a crucial time when life decisions are being made. David Pulliam, who spent some time in our congregation, has written two insightful posts reminding the church of the importance and the means of serving college students. You can read his second post here.
Visiting Nursing Homes - If we will value and honor the older generation as we should, perhaps more value will be given to the coming one. When was the last time you visited the elderly? Not sure how to communicate? Read and follow these very practical tips on communicating with an Alzheimer's patient, which actually are helpful with most any elderly person. As I go now to see the one from whose womb the Lord brought me (Psalm 71:6), I found areas I still need to work on!