How many of us do you think will have the chance to speak timely words to a mother dithering on the edge of her pro-life / pro-choice decision? One in a hundred? Less than that?
I cannot tell. But I know this: Every day, my words and actions to everyone around me vote for life — or they do not. I can talk until the day dawns about the evils of abortion, but what am I doing?
Sometimes I assume that being pro-life means I have to volunteer at my local crisis pregnancy center, march in Washington D.C, or become a foster parent. The Lord in his infinite wisdom and great sense of humor has led me on a couple of those paths—but it’s not really what I’m talking about. I am asking myself not if I am pro- the pro-life movement, but if I am pro-life. All life.
When was the last time I held a child to give his mom a break?
How do I respond to the screaming child (and her frazzled mother) in the next aisle of the grocery store?
On Sundays, do I watch the circus on the bench in front of me* with a frown? a smirk? or active compassion?
*Theoretically speaking. Usually I am the circus. Sometimes I’m the frazzled mother in the next aisle too: Come bring me coffee.
Am I warming my own children with love?
Am I willing to love a child who is not mine? my Sunday school student? my nephew? my runny-nosed neighbor kid?
What comes out of my mouth when I hear that Mrs. Seven Babies In About As Many Years is expecting her eighth?
Death and life are in the power of the tongue.
How have I enabled? What have I done?
Every time I celebrate a child, I am helping his mother to love him.
Every time I give her what she needs from me most—my T.I.M.E—I am helping her to keep him.
I may not meet the frightened expectant mother contemplating abortion, but every expectant mother, every overwhelmed mother, carries fears I cannot see. She needs to hear these words:
You’ve got this. I am so happy for you. I will be here to help.
That’s all I have to say.
How has your load been lightened by the people around you? How have you lightened the load for others?