Last week was a rare miss for me, as it relates to posting something in this space. I was with Linda, my grandson and members of Linda’s family, as we took part in the Saint John Pregnancy Centre’s “Walk for Life.” Other years this walk takes place as a mass gathering and people walk together but this year each ‘bubble’ walks by itself. We chose to ‘walk for life’ by hiking the Bluff overlooking the farm where Linda grew up and the valley where many of her family still live and work. This family venture seemed to honour the family values of the Pregnancy Centre where Linda has long volunteered.
As I have been reflecting on this I have realised that my entire life and ministry is motivated by my ‘pro’ life values. These days we hear the refrain “Black Lives Matter” and I totally agree. Too often this refrain is met with a response “All lives Matter” which while true is unhelpful as not all lives are endangered in the same way.
Unlike many of my evangelical brethren I believe that pro life must mean pro the born as well as the unborn. It seems the height of inconsistency to advocate the rights of the unborn and then be indifferent to their plight thereafter.
My pro-life stand goes beyond the temporal though. I read that God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son so that we might have life, eternal life! Jesus said he came to that we might have life, life to the full! I feel it would be inconsistent of me to advocate for life and rights only on this temporal and temporary plane, when it is ever more vital that people find eternal and abundant life promised in the Gospel.
“Lost lives matter!” ought to be our cry as we take to the streets to effectively share the Good News of the love of God for lost and wayward humanity. When I find myself pining for the days when I could blithely attend a church service and sing at the top of my lungs, I remind myself that my satisfaction is not the goal of the Church. As I turn my nostalgic eyes off myself I can begin to imagine how I can use this time and the opportunities it brings, to share the Good News with those who have not yet responded to the message of God’s great love.
Solomon writes “To everything there is a season…” and this is certainly a season to aver that ‘Black and Indigenous Lives Matter’. Paul writes to Timothy that he is to share the Good News “in season and out of season”. Gospel sharing is always in season because it is vital.
As we launched this month into a new stage of our “Threshold House” project we are mindful that at its heart this is all about equipping people with ‘a Good News story’ to effectively share the hope that they have experienced so that others may find new and abundant life.