Monday, October 10, 2011

Day 13 - A First Day at the Vigil

by stephanie

My little sister paige asked if i would write about my first time.

I had just had my third child, and had felt unspeakably *enormous* pressure through his pregnancy - mostly from the Christians at the church we attended, and from the Christian school where my husband was a very poorly paid teacher.  More than half of his paycheck went to rent on a house that was slated for demolition, and we couldn't afford meat more than a couple of times a week.

And yet,  in my heart i felt that having this child was definitely of God - and that possibly, He was calling me to *more* than three.  As the conviction deepened, and my pregnancy progressed, so did the discouragement from without.

I spent so many days at the piano, singing psalms from my heart to God's ears, asking Him to speak clearly and plainly.

His birth was the hardest birth i can imagine - not because of the physical pain, but because of the intense spiritual warfare in the room. 

And that month, abortions started to be done at our local hospital.

I was sure that the animal my doctor had become had something to do with this great evil that had now infected my town, and as soon as i could, i bundled up my 4 year old son, my 2 year old daughter, and my little baby, and took my place on the sidewalk outside of KGH.

I don't think i was ever alone.  Cec and Teresa Kaller were faithfully there most of the day - and it was a vigil without an ending point.  Every Wednesday we would stand there with our signs, begging women to think twice, to let us help, to let them know that there was an alternative and a good God who loved them.  And every week, there would be moms with young children, some in strollers, giving us the middle finger from across the road, or yelling pro choice slogans.  Made me so afraid for their children - if life means so little to them.

Every Wednesday i would fast, until my turn was over.  I knew i needed to concentrate, to focus my attention on God, to hear His voice.  I asked friends to pray for me.  I asked the church if i could put up information, and they let me have a corner of a bulletin board in the back of the building.

What i learned was something i don't think God could have taught me in any other way.  I learned to step out, even when all around you, all Christians around you - are not.  And are actively telling you to stay quiet, to stay put.  I learned that God indeed does call us to different and several ways to minister to Him - to pour out our lives as sweet incense before Him.  I learned to be silent and to pray for not only the women who were making their way into the building, but for the hurt and broken hearts that responded out of hurt.  I learned faithfulness.  I learned the beauty of the unity of the church Universal.  There were not a lot of dear friends from my own (mega)church - there were a few!  But not many from the thousands who attended - but i met beautiful believers from so many other churches and saw that God had spoken to them, too.

I saw that even though God didn't do something BIG that we could all see, He was there - creating opportunities to talk to people, to explain *why* this was something we were so passionate about.  To share our heart, and God's heart, about the beauty and worth of human life, made in the image of God, and planned from the foundation of the world to glorify Him and to bring something special into the world that the world would miss out on otherwise.

It's never been about yelling at someone to try to change their mind (i've found that approach doesn't work in any setting) - it's about praying, faithfully, in love, for the deceived, for the lost, for the little ones whose mothers and fathers will surely regret this for the rest of their lives.  It is hoping that God will use me.  It is being open to hearing something different from God than what your friends are hearing, and having the deep peace that comes from following His voice.

I don't regret my days in front of KGH, and I've been blessed to live in communities where abortions are outsourced to other towns, other cities.  But the truth is, there is no escape from abortion.  It's not the surgical procedure that is the root - it's simply a symptom.  Abortion touches each of us.  And we will not be the people we are meant to be until we rid ourselves of this great evil.  This is the battlefield of our generation.  Our parents lost this ground.  We can stand with God, and pray His will be done, in our community, in our homes, in our hearts.

The first step is the hardest.  But it does get easier.  And God is with you every minute you are there...