The wife of our pastor in Washington had this on her blog the other day, and I had to post it here, if for no other reason then to be reminded myself.
Warning : CONTROVERSIAL TOPIC ABOUT TO BE DISCUSSED
Traditionally, the term "pro-life" indicates one's strong stance against abortion. It draws a deep line in the sand and proclaims that one is an advocate for the unborn. It announces that one stands in direct opposition to the liberal, "pro-choice" camp. For evangelical Christians, abortion is often a bottom line issue. Meaning, traditional pro-lifers vote based on which candidate opposes abortion. Other issues take a back seat.
I am a Christian. I love Jesus and try to follow hard after him. I am a leader in my church and am married to a pastor. And, I believe we need to re-draw some lines in the sand.
I contend that being "pro-life" means more than advocating for making abortion illegal. Being pro-life means supporting health care for children across America. It means objecting to loss of innocent life (whether American or not) in war, believing in second chances for those condemned to death row (there is a dramatic increase in death sentences for the poor) , and being committed to education so we can reduce the numbers of abortions that occur every year in the United States. Jesus cared about the marginalized, the oppressed. He campaigned against injustice. So should we. I wonder if it has become easier to oppose ideologies than to actually love people.
We have had a "pro-life" president for the past 8 years. The abortion rate in the United States has not decreased. Perhaps the key to reducing abortions lies in Jesus' own commandment, "Love your neighbor as yourself." Interesting that Jesus' greatest commandment did not involve the wielding of power through politics. It instead encouraged his followers to care for people, to put forth kindness above all else, to make a difference through personal relationship. I wonder if it has become easier to oppose political ideologies than to actually love people, to actually get our hands dirty. What if Christians agreed to adopt the millions of kids whose lives end through abortion?
What would happen if Christians really got serious about caring for the marginalized, the oppressed, the sick, the orphans? What would happen if we moved out of the suburbs and into the city?
What would happen if we cared more about injustice than our 401K?