One of the guards out at the abortion clinic stood next to my youngest son Isaiah (who was holding a sign saying "We Can Help") with her own sign: "Weird Hobby" and an arrow pointed his direction. It was intended to discourage him.
We laughed about it later over lunch.
But it got me thinking. What "weird hobbies" constitute a "salt and light" Christian, someone who is making a difference in culture?
I guess our abortion clinic protestation/counseling really is a weird hobby (oh, how I wish I would have taken a picture of the son moment for posterity!). We have stood outside the clinic for years and have happily received middle fingers, raised eyebrows and looks of disgust for…what, exactly?
900 lives. That seems to be the fruit of our weird hobby. That is the number of women who, after leaving the clinic, have said to members of our church after leaving that they are keeping their babies afterall. We have been there standing for 17 years. Many more, we have been told, decide never to roll into to the facility because of the presence of pro-lifers on the sidewalk.
You tell me – is 900, for the effort of one church with a handful of volunteers, worth it?
Hanna wrote a few years ago. This is what she tapped into the Facebook correspondence:
"I just wanted to say thank you for hearing me out and talking with me 6 years ago at the Jackson, MS abortion clinic. Back then I was a frightened Christian girl who thought abortion was the only way to save my life. I had the full examination and even paid the $100.00 to have the procedure done in 1 week….
"When I left the building you talked with me and pointed out a blue bracelet on my wrist which read “Jehovah Jireh.” You told me that He will provide a way for this baby to live if I will trust Him and not listen to fear. I was so frightened and afraid of what my parents and church family would think of me.
"I just want you to know that I am a mother to a very loving and wonderful 6 year old boy named Isaac. He just finished kindergarten and loves everything superhero! He hates vegetables and loves chocolate chip cookies. At night he loves to give me the biggest of hugs and in the morning he is pure sunshine.
"To top it off, God made it possible for me to finish college in 2008, and led me to a very godly man to whom I am now married, and who loves Isaac as if he were his very own. He is in his 3rd year of medical school and will graduate in 2014.
"Six years ago I did not believe any of this could be possible, but you did. You helped me to choose life and trust in God over fear and death."
I have a dear friend who, as a senior in high school, got a girl pregnant. She ended up having an abortion. Years later, after a foray in prison (where he found the Lord and was marvelously discipled), he was studying Proverbs and came upon the verse that says “Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter.” (24:11)
He felt the Holy Spirit leading him through this verse to the local abortion clinic. He really didn’t know what he was doing. He tried to talk to the women but had a relatively fruitless time engaging anybody’s attention. He didn’t want to be there, but he felt God’s nudge nonetheless.
His third week outside the clinic, the lady who ran the place came out and started to give him a piece of her mind. She called him an abortion bomber and otherwise did her best to make him leave the premises. After her tirade, he asked if he could give a little testimony. Remarkably, she listened. He talked about his pregnant girlfriend, of how she visited an abortion clinic without his knowledge, found out the baby was a boy and proceeded to abort him. At the end of the testimony he was in tears and, unlikely as it might seem, so was she.
My friend led her right there, unbelievably, to a relationship with Jesus. She left the clinic, went on to nursing school and a better future.
Today starts a “40 Days for Life” campaign at the local abortion clinic in Jackson. For 40 days people go by and pray for a while a couple times a year. And for 40 days, it seems that an inordinate amount of women decide to have their babies instead of abort them.
Got a weird hobby yet? Why not try this one out in the next couple of weeks. And a save some lives.