Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I was listening to my friend Matt Watson preach last night, and he said something that caught me ear. I thought it was brilliant. Here's the loose quote:

"We need to make sure that we put our talent behind our rhetoric."

Just in case--
/ˈrɛtərɪk/ [ret-er-ik]
1. (in writing or speech) the undue use of exaggeration or display; bombast.
2. the art or science of all specialized literary uses of language in prose or verse, including the figures of speech.
3. the study of the effective use of language.
4. the ability to use language effectively.
5. the art of prose in general as opposed to verse.
6. the art of making persuasive speeches; oratory.
7. (in classical oratory) the art of influencing the thought and conduct of an audience.
8. (in older use) a work on rhetoric.

I feel that sometimes I have heard more flowery speeches promising the world from pulpits than from politicians. I have heard so many believers wax eloquent about the things in this world that need to change. It's good to have passion.

However, if your mouth is writing checks that you are not willing to cash, maybe it's time to consider being still.

For example, I am really, really passionate about the Church helping young women. Specifically, young women that are caught between a rock and a hard place.

The Church in the U.S. speaks daily of passion for life. A passion to see abortion stopped. Once and for all. I, like everyone else, desire desperately to see that day come. I look forward to that day and pray for it to come.

However, we need step back and mull over the way we approach issues of life. Lots of groups are marching daily in Washington. Political Action Committees are working day and night. Some of us even support those PACs with our hard-earned money, which is awesome.

But we have a greater opportunity in which we often miss the forest for the trees. You see, in the heart of Washington and Vincennes, there are two agencies that are making a difference not on Capitol Hill, but in the hearts of young women in our area. The Pregnancy Care Center in Washington and Heart to Heart in Vincennes are two pro-life centers dedicated to not only helping women make the choice for life, but helping them more once they do. They have programs to help underprivileged moms and moms-to-be earn points to get free stuff for their babies by teaching them parenting classes. These centers are empowering them to take responsibility as parents and rewarding them for doing so. They also talk to young women about abstinence and God's plan for healthy sexuality. They share the Gospel with them and hold Bible Studies and meet with the women to pray. They work tirelessly to provide for the needs of these women. It doesn't stop there, either. There are often classes provided for women who have experienced abortions. The course is great, from what I have heard, and it allows women to receive forgiveness and healing in a community that understands-a safe place- where women can truly grieve for their lost child(ren) and finally get some closure. I volunteered at the PCC in Washington my senior year of high school. It changed my life and messed me up for the TRUE Gospel in so many ways. By true Gospel, I mean that cup of cold water Jesus talked about. He knew that we have some the gov't does not. We have the Hope of the Nations. We have the compassion for those in need. And Most of all, we have a directive from the King:

If there is a poor man among your brothers in any of the towns of the land that the LORD your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward your poor brother. Rather be openhanded and freely lend him whatever he needs. Deut. 15

So while some of us are talking a big game about how anti-abortion we are, there are some women who are putting up actual points on the scoreboard. They run and volunteer at these centers. My friend Kim Williams from Knox Co. is a great example. She volunteers her time at Heart to Heart. She is a CPA and is great with money and numbers. She shared with me about a month ago that there is one couple who brings in their check to her every month and she budgets with them and trains them to spend their money wisely. Their finances have improved with Kim's help and they are optimistic about their future. That is being the hands and feet of Christ. Way to go, Kim!
The government is not the solution. Yes, they can outlaw abortion. And I hope that they do.

Then what?

Will we get better at loving single moms that we see every Sunday? Because, praise God, there will be a lot more!

Will we get better at remembering them not just in our prayers, but with a sack of groceries on their doorsteps or a twenty in their hand once a month?

Will we keep the disapproving looks to ourselves as they face the consequences of their choices daily for many years and don't need us to judge?

Will we become as passionate at ministering to the needs of single moms as we are about marching on Washington, DC?

Someday, some of the Church will wake up, and abortion will have been outlawed. I fear then that the rhetoric will not be backed up by our gifts and talents. They will nod their heads and never think a thing about the obvious: outlawing abortion is just the beginning.

ALong those lines, part of placing what we have to offer behind our rhetoric is the desire to personally adopt or facilitating the adoptions of other families. Let's face it, there will be lots of children without homes if abortion is outlawed. It is OUR RESPONSIBILITY, not the government's, to care for the orphans and widows. Want proof?

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27

If you have extra kids clothes, or stuff your babies never got to wear, or bottles, or money, or the time to teach a class, or gifts for administration/organization, make sure that the Church's gifts are backing up the rhetoric.

I love you all.