Sunday, October 25, 2015

DAY 33: Responding To Hatred - 40 Days for Life - Fall 2015

Shawn Carney, 40 Days for Life: For some people, a peaceful vigil at an abortion facility can generate anger.

Abortion hurts the soul and impacts the heart at the deepest level. Knowing and respecting that reality, we should expect some persecution.

“Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you [falsely] because of me,” Jesus told us (Matthew 5:11).

The angry people may unload curses ... and even throw cupcakes (true!). They don’t care that children may hear them.

But there is only one way to respond. It's the way two local 40 Days for Life campaigns responded recently – in a Christ-like fashion.

This is the true spirit of 40 Days for Life!

Manchester, New Hampshire

“The God you pray to doesn’t exist!” shouted a woman from her car to Beth and Hannah who were holding their “pray to end abortion” signs.

“Thank you for looking at our signs,” Beth replied. “(Curse) you. Have a nice day,” she shouted back as she sped away.

It’s a bit odd that someone who is so sure there is no God would be so angry in asserting it ... it’s also interesting that her assertion that God doesn’t exist settled the whole argument about abortion for her.

An atheist could make a strong case against abortion. Science tells us life begins at conception, and anyone who looks at an ultrasound can see there’s a baby in the womb ...

Our vigils do more than send a message of love for the unborn and hope for the mothers.

Through the grace of Christ, we testify that everyone – the children in the womb, the mothers who carry them, the boyfriends who come to the clinic, the Planned Parenthood workers, the drivers who honk and wave, the strung-out addicts, and the woman tossing F-bombs from the car – are all created in God’s image, and their lives have meaning and purpose. There’s no reason we shouldn’t have a nice day.

From Stephen Scaer of the 40 Days for Life leadership team in Manchester.

St. Louis, Missouri
There are many who would be surprised by the amount of supportive responses our sidewalk counselors and prayer volunteers receive from those driving by. We see as many if not more positive honks and thumbs-up signs, mouthed “thank yous” and friendly waves, as we do angered shouts or middle fingers.

However, a few of our interns and volunteers were met with the hateful shouts of a few young women who drove by, throwing a cupcake out the window towards our 40 Days for Life sign as they passed.

Though the cupcake hit our sign, the hatred and anger of these young women did not hit the hearts of our staff and volunteers, who reacted with only absolute humility and love …

And so, like the fearless men and women who stood on the sidewalk today and received hurtful words with kind smiles and humble prayer, we too seek to bring hope where there is despair, joy where there is sadness, and compassion where there is woundedness.

Please join me in prayer on the sidewalk as we bear the light of Christ to the darkest parts of our community.

From Brian Westbrook, the 40 Days for Life director in St. Louis.

Tags: DAY 33: Responding To Hatred - 40 Days for Life - Fall 2015, Manchester, New Hampshire, St. Louis, Missouri To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

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