Tuesday, March 17, 2015

From 40 Days For Life: DAY 28: On the road and on the air

40 Days for Life
Dear Deacon John,
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Steve Karlen, our North American outreach director for 40 Days for Life, is earning his “road warrior” stripes again this campaign.
Airports, rental cars – and especially time away from the family – can be challenges. But there’s great joy in meeting with the local leaders and other volunteers who are the ones who really make 40 Days for Life happen.
It’s also an opportunity to reach people through local radio. While Steve was in Mobile, Alabama, he did an interview with the hosts of the Live Hour on WNGL radio ... where he talked about how he got involved with pro-life work and 40 Days for Life.
To hear a brief excerpt from this interview, click here.
Now … here’s Steve’s report from South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina
Sharon, the 40 Days for Life leader in Columbia is relatively new to the Palmetto State, having moved south from Wisconsin in the last two years. Leading a 40 Days for Life campaign is a challenge anywhere—but especially if you’re not established in a community.
Nevertheless, the Lord is working through Sharon and her team. Prior to my visit, she told me that the campaign has already confirmed three saved babies—with many other turnarounds that she suspected, but could not confirm, were life decisions.
One remarkable day featured seven turnarounds and two of the confirmed saved lives. One abortion-minded mother simply said, “we didn’t go through with it.” The other acknowledged coming for an abortion but said “we changed our minds.”
A number of new participants came out to the vigil site for the first time that evening. Upon my return, Sharon left me a message sharing that ten of these attendees had joined her on the sidewalk.
Greenville, South Carolina
Greenville leader Ingrid reported that more than 94,000 lives have been lost to abortion in the Greenville Women’s Clinic since it opened in 1977. That’s more than 12 times the number of lives lost in all foreign wars during the same time period.
Fortunately, there’s an abortion alternative right next door in the form of a pregnancy help center. Volunteers told me that the property line between the pregnancy center and the abortion facility separates heaven and hell.
Charleston, South Carolina
The 40 Days for Life campaign in Charleston goes around-the-clock. The team actually parks a truck at the vigil site. There’s a little house built over the bed of the truck, and it serves as the headquarters for the vigil participants. Inside, you’ll find a myriad of resources for helping abortion-vulnerable mothers.
It’s not a typical setup—but it’s one that’s making a difference! Before I spoke at the midpoint rally, campaign participants shared their stories of witnessing mothers choose life.
One volunteer said the woman coming out of the abortion center simply told him, “Shut up! I changed my mind.” It certainly wasn’t the most polite way to share the news, but the volunteers in Charleston are no less delighted!
Thanks again to Steve Karlen for today’s update!
Today’s devotional is from Carmen Pate of Alliance Ministries.

Day 28 intention

Pray that those standing in peaceful vigil will extend mercy and grace to others as they remember that Christ did not treat us as our sins deserve.


“You have heard it was said, ‘you shall love your neighbor, and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.”

— Matthew 5:43-44

Reflection by Carmen Pate

Perhaps it is obvious by now that not everyone thinks this campaign is a great idea! In fact, those on the front lines standing in peaceful vigil are perhaps being cursed and hated for what God has called you to do.

Because we are all fallen creatures, our natural response may not be as Christ-like as we would hope it would be.

So, how do we keep our natural response in check, while allowing the Holy Spirit to empower us to love, bless, do good, and pray for those who hate us or would do us harm?

Consider first the Holiness of God.

It seems that sin has clouded our ability to think clearly about God's nature. We simply don't have a clue of how outraged God is by our sin, what an insult sin is to His person, or how sin fires the flames of His wrath.

Praise God that He didn't leave us in our depravity destined for His divine wrath!

Ephesians 2:4-5 says, “But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in sin, made us alive together with Christ; by grace you have been saved.”

Because of God's mercy and grace towards us, we who receive Him receive eternal Hope.

Those who curse you, hate you, spitefully mistreat you and persecute you need that same Hope.

That is the only way we can ever expect them to behave differently.

Ask the Holy Spirit to love them — through you — so they are drawn to the Hope that is in you, that is Christ Jesus.


Heavenly Father, may we reflect your character of grace and kindness to those who hate us and curse us.

Guard our hearts and our tongues as we respond in love to words and actions meant to rile us or cause us harm.

Let others see the Hope that is Christ in all we say and do. In His precious name we pray, Amen.

Printable devotional

To download today’s devotional as a formatted, printable PDF to share:
For life,
 Shawn Carney
Campaign Director
40 Days for Life