Wednesday, February 25, 2015

From 40 Days For Life: DAY 8: Abortion numbers drop

40 Days for Life
Dear Deacon John,
When we held the first-ever 40 Days for Life campaign in front of the Planned Parenthood abortion center in Bryan/College Station, Texas back in 2004, local abortion numbers dropped by 28%.

God used those 40 days of prayer, fasting and 24-hour vigil in that community to bring 1,000 people into the pro-life movement for the very first time.

That was just the beginning. After much prayer and persistence ... that Planned Parenthood facility closed its doors. Today, that building serves as the location for our international headquarters.

Prayer transformed that community ... and it can transform your community.

That facility is just one of 60 abortion centers that have closed following 40 Days for Life campaigns outside their doors. These closures do not happen overnight. But they do show the power of prayer.

Could your city be the next to become abortion-free?

Spring Valley, New York
“Even though the sacrifice is great,” said Eileen, the local coordinator in Spring Valley, “there is great joy in saying yes to God’s will.”
The first week of this 40 Days for Life campaign has been quite cold, but volunteers have gathered to pray each day – generally standing in the snow – across from the Planned Parenthood center. There is much at stake here.
Eileen said there has been a steady decline in the number of abortions in Rockland County, where Spring Valley is located. In 2006, the year before 40 Days for Life started, the county recorded 704 abortions. By 2012, that number had been cut in half ... to 351.
Of course, Eileen said, “one abortion is too many and we have much more work to do. But we are witnessing the direct result of prayer power!
Greenville, South Carolina
The 40 Days for Life team in Greenville says so far, this campaign has been “amazing” … as unusually cold weather has swept into the area.
Right before their big weekend event, a driver leaving the abortion center stopped to deliver a message to the people praying – a woman who had come for an abortion changed her mind.
Then during their rally, they learned that two more babies had been saved the day before.
“Our prayers and sacrifices – especially braving this extremely cold weather – are being honored by God,” said one of the volunteers. “Praise the Lord for all his blessings!”
Overland Park, Kansas
Add Overland Park to the list of cities where volunteers have described the first week of the campaign as “very cold.”
But Wendy, the local leader, said “single digits could not dampen the spirits of the faithful who gathered on the sidewalk outside the Center for Women’s Health abortion facility … and there is much excitement and enthusiasm.” 
Volunteers are praying on the public sidewalks surrounding the abortion center. Wendy says by their presence, they are “proclaiming faith that God is taking the ground and that abortion will end here.”
Today’s devotional is from Rev. Rob Schenck, president of Faith and Action.

Day 8 intention

We pray for a renewal of our zeal to offer generous help to the unborn and their families.


If I have despised the cause of my male or female servant when they complained against me, what then shall I do when God rises up? When He punishes, how shall I answer Him? Did not He who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same One fashion us in the womb?

— Job 31:13-15

Reflection by Rev. Rob Schenck

The ground is level as we stand before God.

Job lived with an awe provoking sense of God's expectation of him, particularly regarding his obligation to care for the weak and needy.

He knew that in God's economy everyone stands on level ground when it comes to our status as God's creatures. Because of that central truth, we must take care of each other.

Job also knew that he didn't deserve any of the good things God gave to him. Instead, those blessings came to Job from God's benevolent heart.

As an extension of that knowledge, Job instinctively linked his obligation to be generous to others to God's kindness toward him.

As in Jesus’ parable of the unmerciful servant (Matthew 18:23-35), Job knew that it is an egregious sin to deny to others what we enjoy ourselves.

He actually calls down on his own head severe condemnation and even punishment should he fail to share with others out of his own abundance (see verses 16-23).

Proverbs 3:27 reads, “Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so.” Some things are so obvious that we don't even need to pray except to ask of God forgiveness and the power to do what so obviously needs doing.


God, forgive us when we try to explain away the obligation we have to help others who need help.

Enable us to not devalue them because they are in the circumstance that they are in, but to see them for what they are, those, who like us, were formed by your hand in their mother's womb. Amen.

Printable devotional

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For life,

 Shawn Carney
Campaign Director
40 Days for Life