Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Day 15 - On Wearing Signs

Repost - thinking about the signs we wear to the Kensington clinic...

It seems to me that more people than ever have been asking about the signs that we can wear to the vigil. People are longing to have a message to bear as they pray at the clinic. They're longing to bring clarity to their presence, and to show the community - and those wounded ones using the clinic that we really, really care. As Fawne mentioned yesterday, 40 Days for Life doesn't use graphic images. Neither do we use any signs that are intentionally inflammatory - (though, i've had people curse at me when i'm wearing my sign "You Are Loved", so i know it is likely impossible to carry a sign that doesn't cause anger for someone... )  We have a lot of flexibility with signs - and some of the best and most compelling ones i've seen have been the personal testimonies of the ones carrying them.
Have you considered wearing a sign? What would you say?


The perfect sign.
There likely isn't one... i know...
But this is a question that i ask myself again and again as i prepare my mind and heart for the 40 Day prayer vigil that is set to begin in 2 months.
There is often division among prolifers over methods, wording, attitudes etc...
We've even had disagreements about signs on this tiny blog.
We need more discussion - more understanding for each other - more sharing of wisdom & opinions... more soul searching.
Why does it matter?
It matters because the signs that we wear at the Kensington Clinic are likely the last prolife messages that these women will see before making a final decision about the wee life they are carrying. It matters because we are a last line of defence. It matters because God loves these families... and so too must we. It matters because "they will know we are Christians by our love". It matters because we want the signs to be compelling - because this is life and death we're talking about.
Let's just face it... If we're going to choose to wear a sign to an abortion clinic... the message on that sign matters.
This doesn't mean we'll all wear the same sign. We will all fill in different gaps, we'll appeal to different hurting individuals, we'll be authentic - and because we're authentic, we'll be diverse.
My faithful little sign that i've worn for the past year has a simple message, "You are loved." The reverse states, "Life is a Gift".
Other signs read, "Look at the Ultrasound", "Abortion Stops a Beating Heart", or simply, "40 Days for Life".
We're facing a difficult situation here at the Kensington clinic. We're not allowed to cross that road. We're not allowed to speak - unless spoken to. We're limited in our access and in our numbers... What words would reach into that desperate situation... What words could cut through the pain, fear and numbness - to the heart of a mother or father... What words would have the deepest impact... while leaving the smallest wound?
i'm thinking of words today like, "Can i help?", "Ask me why i'm here"...
But even these... and the blinking cursor that i stared at for minutes as my wracked my brain for that perfect combination of words that would stop a course of action... seem so insufficient.
The truth is... they are.
& so we bathe them in tears and prayer. We allow our hearts to break with compassion and we bring our requests brokenly to our Maker.
Oh, God... prepare my heart... & give me the words.

What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!  Romans 7:24-25

Lord, help me to make my attitude towards the mothers and fathers of the unborn who are desperate enough to contemplate abortion one of humility, empathy, and love rather than of judgment. Help me to understand that those who work in the abortion industry often began that work with the best of intentions and may be personally dismayed by abortion itself. Remind me of my own sins you have graciously forgiven so that I remember that forgiveness is possible for all who are willing to repent of their sins and truly believe. Amen. (Prayer excerpt from book, 40 Days for Life, available on Amazon).

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