It's that time of year again! New Year's resolutions. You might resolve to lose weight, read your Bible more, drink more water, spend more time with family, go to church more, etc.
There's always a way to improve, and the new year is a great time to do that. It feels like a blank slate. The world is your oyster. Anything can happen.
The problem is, we're still us. We love sleeping in, drinking pop, eating chocolate, and watching Netflix (at least, I do!) By the end of January, or maybe even earlier, our New Year's resolutions are tossed out with the Christmas dinner leftovers and Aunt Edna's fruitcake.
So, why write a post about pro-life resolutions? Isn't it just a waste of time?
I don't think so.
I do think, though, that we can make a resolution at any time. It can be a big ceremony, a quiet commitment, a pledge to your spouse, or a promise to your children. Resolutions aren't just for New Year's Day. In fact, they may mean more if they occur at some other time.
These resolutions are my resolutions. I'm not writing this to tell you what to do or how you should spend your 2020. These are things that I have resolved to do after great prayer and consideration. Some of them have been going on for years, and others are newer.
So, my first resolution is this.
1. Look to see where God is working and join Him.
This is something I have been thinking about more and more. I love working, doing, and going. It can be hard for me to slow down and pay attention to where God is working. It's so easy for me to think that I am doing the right thing, only to find out that God would rather I put my time and energy elsewhere.
How is this pro-life?
So often we decide what God wants us to do to end abortion. As I was preparing for 2015 I was feeling very anxious about raising funds for the ministry. 2014 was a rough year, and we needed to recoup. I decided that my main goal in 2015 would be fundraising.
Then, I heard God's still small voice say, "Build the Board."
That didn't make any sense. How would that help?
Build the Board.
Okay, God. If you say so.
I did. And, you know what? The first new Board Member that joined is now our President and has helped us make amazing progress. When I do things in my own wisdom, they flop. When I follow God's leading, they work.
This year, as a pro-life movement, let's listen for God first and then take action.
2. Love them both
This is an easy one for me, but it's one I reiterate to myself almost daily. Babies are great, babies are cute, and babies are cuddly. However, we have to think about mom too. What does she need? What is she feeling? How can we help her?
At Alpha Omega Center, we focus almost exclusively on the mother. We need to know what she's facing and where she's coming from, or else we can't make a difference.
By loving all mothers regardless of their life choices, the way they look, or even the words they use, we save lives. When we shift our focus from baby to mom we see lives saved.
3. Remember that being pro-life starts at home.
At a kids' Christmas party this year (last year? recently? I'm in that holiday funk where I don't know what day it is or what is happening) one of the other moms came up and told me she appreciated how I wrote that raising my kids is the most pro-life thing I'll ever do. It was a great reminder to heed my own words! I love my kiddos, I do, but it is really easy to get caught up in work and forget that they need me too.
Being pro-life starts at home with my family.
For me, that looks like involving them in what I do. Letting them volunteer (even though it might make the task take longer) and slowing down to explain to them why we're doing what we're doing and why it's honoring God and saving lives.
It also means being careful to spend time with my husband and kids without working. Focusing on them instead of checking email, not trying to squash them in around work tasks, and being present when they need me.
It might even look like taking some more days off in 2020 and realizing that God doesn't need me to work myself into the ground to make things happen.
4. Engage my church family in pro-life work
I am in other churches A LOT. There have been Sundays where I crash into my own church after a few (or more) months out and feel like I barely recognize half the people there. I have resolved to spend more time in my own church on Sundays. Not every Sunday (part of my calling is to get out there and mobilize God's people) but I want to be there more often than I have been.
More than just hanging out with them, as fun as that is, I want to more meaningfully engage them in pro-life work. They're already crazy supportive, so it's on me to reach out more with opportunities for them to take part and get involved. Maybe I'll even get to take part in teaching my own church curriculum. That would be pretty wild!
I believe that God is going to use the church, His people, to end abortion. I love all believers. I really enjoy hanging out at other churches, but it might be time to prioritize spending time with my own church family.
This one shouldn't be hard, as I am blessed to have a fantastic church to belong to. At least, it was pretty sweet the last time I was there. It's been awhile...
5. Remind myself daily (hourly?) that God loves these children more than I do.
Fifth, and finally, is to remind myself as often as I need to that God loves these children, mothers, families, and this community more than I do. He's got this!
This isn't an excuse to slack off or give up on my calling, but it's merely a reminder that I don't have to explain to God why this is important or remind him about what our goals are. If He is leading us, (and He is) then He will raise up the people He needs to make things happen. He isn't asking me to go it alone.
God asks us to do hard and holy things, but He walks with us all the way. He loves these children immeasurably more than I ever could. At the end of the day, when we have done what we can do, the best place to leave them is in His hands.
What's on your list of pro-life resolutions?
Your list is probably much different than mine. In fact, I am confident that if God is calling me to lay some things down, then He is calling someone else to pick them up.
Is that you?
If it is, don't delay. Act on that resolution today. Lives may depend on your obedience to God's calling on your life.
Do you want to get involved in pro-life work? Find a pregnancy center near you and volunteer! They could use you, and it's a great way to join God where He is already working.