January 11, 2021
Help Her Be Brave
Lee en español
"He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" Micah 6:8 (ESV)
One day, as I was sitting across the table from a pastor, I couldn't hold back my happy tears. He had been sharing about his daughter, Abby, having an unplanned pregnancy and the effect it had not only on his family but also on the church he pastored.
The father of the baby was in and out of jail and not a part of Abby's life, and she had asked for forgiveness for the pain she had caused. She wanted to come back home and she did. Eventually, Abby gave birth to a sweet baby girl. Everyone in the family was happy about this new addition, even though the timing wasn't what they had hoped.
During the pregnancy, the pastor had shared the news with his congregation, and it was received with grace. Members of the church had purchased gifts for the baby, dropping them on their doorstep. They would encourage Abby and thank her for choosing life. Then what he said next touched me deeply.
He told me Abby asked him if it would be okay to dedicate her baby, his grandchild, at his church. He agreed, and they arranged for the baby dedication at their next scheduled ceremonies.
At their baby dedication ceremony, when each family walks to the altar, the pastor will ask, "Would the family members who represent this child please stand?" Then the pastor leads a prayer of dedication for that specific family.
On the night of Abby's baby's dedication, family after family took their turns at the altar, until finally, it was her turn.
The pastor asked the same question he had asked with each of the other families: "Would the family members who represent this woman and her child please stand?"
What happened next is the perfect picture of God's dream for the world: The whole church stood up.
Leading a national ministry that launches church support groups for women with unexpected pregnancies, I have seen firsthand the power the church has in helping save lives because of kindness and love. The church can be a spiritual family to a single mother for not only the pregnancy, but for her whole life. The church can be an army of love warriors to help her see past the unplanned circumstance that might be consuming her every waking moment and, instead, help her be brave.
God has put certain strengths, gifts and passions within you so that you can use them to change the world. There is something unique inside of you that equips you to help someone be courageous. Together, we can make choosing life the only possible option.
God commands us to use those gifts and passions, and He tells us how: "He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" (Micah 6:8). When we use our gifts to "do justice," "love kindness," and "walk humbly with [our] God," we become the hands and feet of Christ.
Here are a few questions to ask as you pray about how you can specifically help in your community and sphere of influence:
- What are you passionate about? What is your favorite hobby? Could it be used in the pro-life movement, or for another cause? For example, if you love numbers, teach a single mom how to budget. If you love career coaching, help a struggling father create his resume and find a job. If you love children, offer to babysit. If you have a knack for fixing cars, you could help repair a teen mom's car.
- What makes you pound your fist on the table and say, "Someone needs to do something about this!" That someone might be you. There's a reason why you get fired up about a certain injustice or cause - maybe God has designed you to do something about it.
- What is your story? Oftentimes, our purpose is tied to our story. Have you experienced an abortion and want to help others experience God's healing the way you have? Did an unplanned pregnancy or single motherhood leave you feeling completely alone? Perhaps you can be the person you wish had been there for you. God often uses our deepest pain as the launching pad for our greatest calling.
Look out into the world and see what breaks your heart. Then, run toward your heartbreak, not away from it. Dig in and ask God if your heart is broken because His is too. When your heartbreak becomes a map to find a place to serve, it will set your soul on fire.
If all of us work together, we will make choosing life the only option and empower women to be brave. Let's work together to do justice and love kindness and walk humbly with our God!
Heavenly Father, thank You for giving me a passion to be a changemaker. Forgive me for not fully using the gifts You have given me to serve others. Help me find a way to help her be brave. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Proverbs 3:27, "Never walk away from someone who deserves help; your hand is God's hand for that person." (MSG)
For practical ideas on how to empower women in their life decision, grab a copy of Amy Ford's book, Help Her Be Brave: Discover Your Place in the Pro-Life Movement.
For more ideas to help save lives, go to Help Her Be Brave.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
What gifts has God given you that could help a woman with an unexpected pregnancy be brave and choose life? Let us know in the comments!
© 2021 by Amy Ford. All rights reserved.