What do you suppose the average abortionist thinks or feels about the evangelical church? Or Christians in general? I wonder how many angry placards, demonstrations, or physical attacks it takes to influence a person's view of Jesus. How has our passion for saving lives become so myopically concentrated on one point that we eagerly destroy life in the process? Yet isn't that what's done everytime we scathingly proclaim Christ, spitting out a furious stream of virulent venom on all who dare live according to a different set of values than our own?
"By this all men will know that you are my disciples, that you have love for one another." I'm not going to pretend that this isn't a sensitive topic, or that there are more issues at hand than will be dealt with in this blog. This entry is meant to be a catalyst for thought, not to supply all the answers. But here's one thing I know: Christ commanded us to love. Have we truly loved those who are involved with abortions? I know we love repentant mothers who stand and testify to the many inherant evils abortion. And I know we've preached the truth time and time again to the entire community. But...HAVE WE LOVED THEM?
What if we were to ask a few doctors what they thought the church thought about them? What if we were to ask if they think they would be welcomed in our churches. Picture the "meet and greet" minute at your local church. "Hi, I'm Paul, this my wife Cathy, and that little rascal on the end is Billy. Yeah, so nice to meet you...I'm a doctor. I work over at the Planned Parenthood just down the street." How well would I show grace, love, and mercy in that moment? Would my emotions, thoughts, and feelings mirror those of Jesus as he endured his incarnation?
Did Jesus come to save the righteous or the sinners? The healthy or the sick?
I've decided I'm going to show abortionists that I love them. I'm going to show them as I tell them that Jesus loves them. Maybe I'll bring their office some refreshments. Of course, anything I bring would have to be store-bought and sealed--otherwise they might suspect me of poisoning them. Doesn't this just drive home my point?! How have we failed so miserably that an act of Christian charity might easily be misconstrued as an attempt at murder? Maybe I'll just send a card. Maybe I'll offer to wash their cars. I even hope that people at my church will encourage me to offer an invitation to worship with us in community on a Sunday morning. To be honest, what I do what matter as much as what I will be doing. I love the abortionist, and I'll be letting him know it.
If you're shaking your head thinking, "It'll never work," then you've missed the point entirely. You may as well pluck your placard off the grass and return to your post in the picket line. This is no ends-based ministry, where only saved souls will justify the effort! God didn't send his son to earth to simply save it--He sent him because he loved us. My goal isn't to add a few abortion doctors to the heavenly ledger. My passion is to show the love of Jesus to a particular group of people (real people!) that has likely felt very little of it up to this point.
Take stock of how you feel right now. Is this a new idea? Or have you too wrestled with the tension of loving in truth, of living in this world without sacrificing doctrine or charity? Do you find my thoughts repulsive? I fear many will. My response is simple. It's time to stop playing favorites (Ja 2). Why is it acceptable to minister to murderers on death row while attacking murderers in sterile offices wearing pristine white coats? It's not.
I can't end without one more thought. It's pretty revolutionary, controversial, and widely unpopular in many of my circles, so hang on. People who work in abortion clinics aren't the only ones who need our love--so do people who vote pro-choice.