Wednesday, September 30, 2009

DAY 8: A most incredible week!

Dear Mike,Well, here we are! The first week of the fall 40 Daysfor Life campaign is complete.Since it's been a most incredible week, I'd like toshare some "most incredible" happenings, incategories large and small.Weather-wise, we've seen a bit of everything -- warmin the south, cool in the north, a lot of rain in theeast. But clearly, the honor for Most IncredibleWeather Report goes to Colorado Springs for Day 1 ofthe campaign."Colorado Springs woke up this morning to a howlingwind," Michele told me. "I looked outside and therewas blowing snow." Snow! The wind died down and thesnow stopped, but it was still pretty cold. But morethan 60 people showed up -- in winter coats, hats andmittens -- for the opening event of the 40 Days forLife campaign. "No," Michele said, "the cold won'tkeep us away!"We've seen tons of great pictures from many localefforts, but the Most Incredible Picture of a 40 Daysfor Life Banner Hanging from a Church Bell Tower isdefinitely from Pensacola, Florida, where SacredHeart Cathedral's very tall banner features the 40Days for Life logo and a scripture verse, John 10:10– "I came that they may have life, and have itabundantly."Go here to see the banner on the bell tower:http://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=292We also have photographic evidence for the MostIncredible Falsehood from Planned Parenthood -- thebanner hanging from the walls of an abortion centerin St. Louis with the message, "Defend the truth."Click here to see the abortion center's banner:http://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=292Defending the truth? That's what YOU are doing!Planned Parenthood is the nation's largest abortionchain and despite the constant claim that PlannedParenthood somehow "reduces abortions," thisorganization's latest annual report shows a recordtotal of 305,310 abortions for the previous year --numbers that continue to go up.That's indefensible.Local campaigns had many good TV news reports thusfar (you can check them out through the links on ournews page at http://40daysforlife.com/news.cfm )But I thought the Most Incredible TV News Report camefrom WFMZ-TV, whose report on 40 Days for Life inPhillipsburg, New Jersey gives a fair, objective viewof the campaign -- and an interesting look at thosewho "defend" the abortion business.See the video report here (note that there's acommercial before the news story begins), and pleasepray for the lone "pro-choice" supporter. You'll seewhat I mean:hhttp://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=292While mentioning incredible things, an incrediblepro-life event that takes place during this fall's40 Days for Life is the annual Life Chain. It'shappening this Sunday, October 4. People will linethe sidewalks in communities across North America tostand up for life. You can find out much more at:http://nationallifechain.orgIf you've never taken a public stand for an end toabortion, please consider this invitation. It willgive you a first taste for pro-life activity thatwill whet your appetite for doing even more -- liketaking part in the nearest 40 Days for Life vigil,for instance! ;-)Without a doubt, however, even in a most eventfulweek of lives saved, hearts consoled and prayersanswered, my Most Incredible Inspiration is -- YOU!YOU are the ones who answer God's call to speak outfor those who cannot speak for themselves. It hasbeen genuinely amazing to watch you in action. And Ican't wait to see what happens these next 33 days!Here's today's devotional from Fr. Frank Pavone,National Director of Priests for Life...-----------------------------------------------------DAY 8 INTENTION-----------------------------------------------------May the spirit and example of the Good Samaritan fillthe hearts and minds of all our citizens.-----------------------------------------------------SCRIPTURE-----------------------------------------------------Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem toJericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. Theystripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away,leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be goingdown the same road, and when he saw the man, hepassed by on the other side. So, too, a Levite, whenhe came to the place and saw him, passed by on theother side.""But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the manwas; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. Hewent to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oiland wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, tookhim to an inn and took care of him. The next day hetook out two silver coins and gave them to theinnkeeper. 'Look after him,' he said, 'and when Ireturn, I will reimburse you for any extra expenseyou may have.'""Which of these three do you think was a neighbor tothe man who fell into the hands of robbers?" Theexpert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy onhim." Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."-- Luke 10:30-37-----------------------------------------------------REFLECTION by Fr. Frank Pavone, Priests for Life-----------------------------------------------------Here Jesus commands us to show mercy to the victimsof the culture of violence and death.But why did the priest and Levite fail to show mercy?Perhaps they feared that the robbers were hiding justaround the next corner to attack them. They askedthemselves, "If I stop to help this man, what willhappen to me?"The Samaritan, however, reversed the question, andasked, "If I don't stop to help this man, what willhappen to him?"In working to save the unborn, let's not worry aboutwhat will happen to us if we act; let's worry aboutwhat will happen to the unborn if we don't.-----------------------------------------------------PRAYER-----------------------------------------------------Father, we are moved by the lesson of the GoodSamaritan, who allowed compassion to influence himmore than fear. Give us the same heart.Grant that we may never count the cost of standing upand speaking out for the unborn. We pray throughChrist our Lord, Amen.-----------------------------------------------------PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL-----------------------------------------------------To download today's devotional as a formatted,printable PDF to share with friends:http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day08print.pdf-----------------------------------------------------For Life,David BereitNational Director40 Days for Life

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

DAY 7: Not just moms & babies; TV special

*****************************************************PLEASE NOTE -- Right below today's message there is abig announcement of a worldwide television specialevent about 40 Days for Life that will be airing inmillions of homes -- TONIGHT!*****************************************************
Dear Mike,
I received a report from Houston that was botheye-opening and heartbreaking.
People participating in the 40 Days for Life vigilwatched as a young man who appeared to be in tearswalked into Planned Parenthood with his girlfriendand her mother.
When they left some time later, he was most certainlycrying -- and obviously quite upset.
I'll let one of the prayer vigil participants pick upthe story...
I watched him head down the street, alternating between wiping the tears from his face and punching the buildings in anger and frustration as he passed them. Eventually he headed back toward the parking lot. As he approached, I went to him first. All I could think to say was that I was so very sorry for his loss. He began to cry again.
Then a truck pulled up leaving the parking lot with his girlfriend and her mother inside. The girl's mother yelled at him to get in and cursed him as he opened the door. He had one foot inside, then stepped back out and closed the door. As she drove away he promptly sat down on the curb and cried like a baby. Three of us sat down beside him -- all men -- and cried with him.
Eventually, he began to talk. He was probably in his very early twenties. He told us that his girlfriend did not want to keep the child because she feared they would not be able to provide for him. He asked her how she could destroy a life based on a hunch. He told her this child had a heartbeat and a soul and deserved to live. He even tried to convince her to, at the very least, put the child up for adoption.
I was struck by the fact that this young man knew all this simply because his heart told him it was true. He was wise well beyond his years and he was hurting terribly.
I was struck by the clear reality that fathers have so little to do with whether their own children live or die. I also couldn't help but notice that despite the high volume of Planned Parenthood volunteers around, none of them approached him.
Before I left him, he stood up to hug me. All I could tell him was what I truly believed -- that today, his child knows that his/her father fought for it. That to his child, he is a hero and that someday he would know that also.
Please pray for this young man and others like him.The tragedy of abortion is real and happening everyday. No one knows that better than he.
I sincerely hope this young man comes to embrace theexceptional advice he was given; but that will mostcertainly take time. I cannot even begin to imaginethe anguish.
This is a first-person account of what abortion doesto fathers. Who knows how many others have walked inhis shoes, as there are more than a million abortionsevery year -- and more than 50 million since the 1973Roe v. Wade decision that opened the floodgates toabortion on demand.
Let's pray even harder!
*****************************************************EWTN NETWORK TO AIR 40 DAYS FOR LIFE SPECIAL TONIGHT!*****************************************************
The second installment of the Being Human televisionseries, hosted by 40 Days for Life campaign directorShawn Carney, airs on the EWTN network at 6:30 PMEastern TODAY!
EWTN is on many cable and satellite systems, soplease look for this outstanding account of 40 Daysfor Life, filmed by an Emmy-award-winning director.
* WHAT: "Being Human: 40 Days for Life"
* DATE: TONIGHT! Tuesday, September 29
* TIME: 6:30 PM Eastern (3:30 PM Pacific)
* WHERE: Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) -- available in most markets
Watch a short preview online at:
http://www.beinghumanshow.com
Don't have cable or don't get EWTN?
You can watch the 30-minute documentary online at thestart time by visiting http://www.ewtn.com and thenselecting "Television" > "Live TV - English" from thenavigation menu at the top of the page.
Spread the word to all your friends, co-workers,family members, and fellow believers about thisexciting show!
And now here's today's devotional from Fr. TerryGensemer, the National Director of the CharismaticEpiscopal Church for Life...
-----------------------------------------------------DAY 7 INTENTION-----------------------------------------------------
May we have a heart and a zeal to save the poor andrelease the oppressed.
-----------------------------------------------------SCRIPTURE-----------------------------------------------------
The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hasanointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hassent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaimliberty to the captives and recovery of sight to theblind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed.
-- Luke 4:18-19
-----------------------------------------------------REFLECTION by Fr. Terry Gensemer-----------------------------------------------------
This passage is a very familiar one. It has beenpreached on many occasions, even made popular inbooks and songs. Though the quote is about Jesus, allChristians take this commission seriously as adirective on how to reach the world with the gospel.
We, like our Savior, are to bring the good news tothe poor, the broken hearted, those in captivity,those who cannot see, and the oppressed.
The commission given to us in this passage is clearlya charge to care for those for whom God cares themost. I wonder though, whom do we look for to betouched by the Holy Spirit as we go out into theworld?
Who are the poor, if not those unborn children whohave been abandoned by their parents before they everleave the womb?
Who are the broken hearted, if not those unbornchildren whose only example of love is having theirmother take them to an abortion clinic to bedestroyed, or the mother of a child who has beendeceived by everyone around her into believing thatwhat she is doing is best for her and her child?
Who are the captives, if not those unborn childrenwho are bound over to death by the "choice" ofabortion?
Who is more blind than an unborn child in thedarkness of a womb that has become a waiting room fortheir death?
And who is more oppressed than those unborn childrenwhose oppression has been legitimized by theirgovernment, their church and even their family andloved ones?
-----------------------------------------------------PRAYER-----------------------------------------------------
Lord, You empower us with Your Spirit to do your willin the earth. Send us to the poorest, the mostbroken, the most captive, the most blind and the mostoppressed in the world, the innocent pre-bornchildren in their mother's wombs that are scheduledfor destruction. Help us to bring them healing,liberty, sight and justice through Jesus Christ ourLord, Amen.
-----------------------------------------------------PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL-----------------------------------------------------
To download today's devotional as a formatted,printable PDF to share with friends:
http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day07print.pdf
-----------------------------------------------------
For Life,
David BereitNational Director40 Days for Life

Monday, September 28, 2009

DAY 6: 38 lives saved!

Dear Mike,
While Jackie was praying at the 40 Days for Lifevigil in GREENLAND, NEW HAMPSHIRE, a car slowlypulled up in front of the clinic. The driver rolleddown the window and said, "I don't know what you'redoing here; but whatever it is, it's working!" Thedriver went on to say the abortion center had letemployees go because business was off.
All Jackie could say was, "Praise God for victories!"
The staff at yet another abortion center has shrunkby at least one. But this wasn't a layoff. This was aclinic nurse who walked out and quit!
Angela of the 40 Days for Life team in GRANITE CITY,ILLINOIS said the abortion facility nurse came outand hugged her. "Thank you for praying for me," shetold Angela. "Your witness has been powerful to me.This is my last day! I'm going off to do what realnurses should be doing." With that, she walked to hercar and drove away.
This is the SECOND abortion worker to quit duringthis 40 Days for Life campaign!
And yes, there are amazing stories to share aboutbabies saved from abortion as well.
Thus far in this fall 40 Days for Life campaign,we've received reports of 38 mothers who changedtheir minds and chose life. And of course, those arejust the ones we know of!
Here are just a few of those stories:
In HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT, Al reported that whilepeople were praying at the 40 Days for Life vigilacross from the abortion center, a man came over witha simple message: "Thank you!" His niece had beenscheduled for an abortion. But after seeing the grouppraying, she simply could not go through with it.
In WASHINGTON, DC, Dick tells of a young couple whowalked into the Planned Parenthood abortion facility.Volunteers at the 40 Days for Life vigil didn't havemuch time to talk with them on their way in. Butafter an hour or so, they came back out. "They saidthey changed their minds about having an abortion."
In PENSACOLA, FLORIDA, there was another situation inwhich just the sight of people praying outside made aprofound impact. Ernie said an SUV had pulled up tothe clinic entrance, where the 40 Days for Life vigilwas in progress. The couple inside just stopped, tookanother look, and drove away without ever going in.
The 40 Days for Life team in EL PASO, TEXAS receiveda special blessing. Sandra said a woman drove up tothe vigil and wanted to talk about the day shedecided not to have an abortion. At the time, she sawher pregnancy as something that would just get in theway of her promising career.
But the day of her appointment, people had beenpraying outside the clinic. When she saw that, shestopped and asked herself, "What am I doing here?This is not right!"
As she continued her story, the young woman rolleddown her car window, pointed to the child in the carseat and began to cry. "Thanks to you all," she said,"I have this beautiful son!"
"You could imagine the feeling," Sandra said. "Ibelieve at that moment everybody was crying withher." The group prayed for the mother, her child andfor all her family. "We ask God to continue blessingthem and thank Him for this wonderful gift of life."
Prayer DOES work. And sometimes, you don't have tosay a word.
Let's keep it up!
Here's today's devotional from Rev. Paul StallsworthPresident of Lifewatch (United Methodist Church)...
-----------------------------------------------------DAY 6 INTENTION-----------------------------------------------------
That knowing the shortness of life, all may value itmore deeply.
-----------------------------------------------------SCRIPTURE-----------------------------------------------------
Remember your Creator before the silver cord isloosed, or the golden bowl is broken, or the pitchershattered at the fountain, or the wheel broken at thewell. Then the dust will return to the earth as itwas, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.
-- Ecclesiastes 12:6-7
-----------------------------------------------------REFLECTION by Rev. Paul Stallsworth, Lifewatch-----------------------------------------------------
God is giver of all life. Short lived or long lived,human lives are lived out in this world. Themetaphors for death are many. But their meaning isclear and singular: all will die. Even so, death isnot the absolute end. It is not the end of the story.For as certainly as God gave life, at death the lifeor spirit that God gave returns to God.
By God, we are created. For God, we live our givendays. To God, we return at the end of our earthlydays. And with God, we live through eternity.Clearly, all along the way, this gracious, loving Godis with us. No human life is random or alone. Nohuman life was created without purpose. Not one humanlife is without destiny.
All human lives, acknowledged or not, are related toGod -- from beginning, to end, throughout eternity.Therefore, in this world, all human lives are to berespected and protected, for their lives are signs ofGod's sovereignty.
-----------------------------------------------------PRAYER-----------------------------------------------------
O God, we too often try to live in ways that ignoreour coming death. We forget that our days arenumbered by You, that at the end of our days yourjudgment awaits, that You are the Lord of ourdestiny.
Help us to repent daily, and then to live each day injoyful obedience. Lead us to live in the light andpromise of eternity. Prepare us to live fully andsacrificially. Prepare us to die faithfully andhopefully, so that we might live forever with You.Through Jesus Christ, who has gone before us, wetrust and hope and love and pray, Amen.
-----------------------------------------------------PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL-----------------------------------------------------
To download today's devotional as a formatted,printable PDF to share with friends:
http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day06print.pdf
-----------------------------------------------------
For Life,
David BereitNational Director40 Days for Life
P.S.- Thanks to the hundreds of you who sent kindbirthday wishes to my wife yesterday! When I askedher what she wanted to do on her birthday, the firstthing she said was "go pray at a 40 Days for Lifesite." So we went to the Falls Church, Virginia,vigil -- about an hour from our home -- and prayedtogether as a family. What a blessing it was!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

DAY 5: More than we can imagine

Dear Mike,
"God is working in more ways than we can imagine."
That subject line jumped out from the hundreds ofe-mail messages that pour in to my inbox every day.
The story that followed certainly offered proof!
The writer told of her daughter, who was raised inthe church and grew into a young teenager who "wasmore spiritual than I ever thought I could be. Shewas so mature in her faith and her relationship withChrist. It amazed me how someone so young could 'getit' even more than I. She used to drag her friends tochurch activities and pray for them all the time. Sheeven went on a mission trip."
As is the unfortunate case with many young people,there also came a time of rebellion. In the 11thgrade, she got involved with a group at school thatdidn't exactly practice Christian principles. "Itinfluenced her walk with God and she drew away fromHim," this mother wrote, "to the point of leavingchurch and moving in with her boyfriend at the end ofher junior year."
This young man "does not approve of our deep faith inGod and we do not get along with him very well atall," she wrote. But her daughter did finish school.
Later, she and her boyfriend got married. Soonafterward, the young wife became pregnant, and thecouple's financial situation was pretty shaky. Theyeven had to turn to charitable assistance to make itthrough this time.
The mother who wrote this story is now a grandmother-- her daughter's little girl is an incredibleblessing, but she said her son-in-law hasn't beenmuch help. With the arrival of the new baby, however,the mother and daughter have been spending more timetogether, repairing their broken relationship.
So what does this have to do with 40 Days for Life?
Well, the woman who shared this story is a vigilcoordinator for one of the local campaigns, and herdaughter saw her working on the vigil schedule. Theyoung woman noticed blank spaces on the schedule.
She looked up and asked, "What will you all do forthese blank spots?"
"I told her God will send His people to fill thoseslots. She looked at me and said, 'Well, maybe youand I could go together sometimes. I'd like to takethe baby up there on the day they do the abortionsand pray. Maybe seeing my precious baby will make onegirl stop and think twice about what she's gettingready to do and she'll change her mind.'"
The mother held back her tears and suggested they allgo pray together every Thursday.
She is thankful that God is using the prayer vigil tosave babies, that He is using 40 Days for Life torestore relationships, and that He is drawing herdaughter back to His heart.
"We serve such a mighty and awesome God," she said."I know it's not quite a 'baby is saved' story, but Ibelieve eternally it will be."
Please hold this family in your prayers. Who knowswhat amazing work God will do next?
Here's today's devotional from Rev. Ben Sheldon,President Emeritus, Presbyterians Pro-Life...
-----------------------------------------------------DAY 5 INTENTION-----------------------------------------------------
May the truth of the final judgment shape ourthoughts, priorities, and choices here on earth.
-----------------------------------------------------SCRIPTURE-----------------------------------------------------
The King will answer and say to them, "Assuredly, Isay to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of theleast of these my brethren, you did it to me."
-- Matthew 25:31-46
-----------------------------------------------------REFLECTION by Rev. Ben Sheldon-----------------------------------------------------
Caring for others is not optional.
Jesus' picture of the final judgment concludes withthis sobering word: the wicked, who failed to carefor others in their various needs (e.g., the hungry,the thirsty, the aliens, the naked, the sick, theimprisoned) will go away into everlasting punishment,but the righteous who did seek to meet those needswill end up with him, enjoying eternal life.
We know that this was no parable! Jesus has given usfair warning! Everything in God's Word points to thetruth that compassionate concern and practical carefor all people, especially for the poor, thedestitute, the weak and needy is required of us, ifindeed we hope to escape the punishment of the fireof hell.
And who are the poor and needy, if not helpless,unborn babies, as well as the aged and infirm at theother end of life? Surely the "least of these"embraces not only those at both ends of the continuumof life, but all others in between.
Just how we, as Christ's true followers, respond tohis admonition "inasmuch as you did it to the leastof these, you did it to me" will determine whether weenjoy eternal bliss in his presence or the bleak anddreadful reality of eternal punishment in hell.Nothing in God's Word could be clearer!
-----------------------------------------------------PRAYER-----------------------------------------------------
Gracious and merciful Father, we gladly embrace yourWord that counsels us to care for the least of yourchildren, and we renew our dedication to defendingthe unborn and all whose right to life is compromisedby our godless society's selfish lack of concern.Free us from our own failures and sins so that wewill be truly pro-life in every area of our lives.Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.
-----------------------------------------------------PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL-----------------------------------------------------
To download today's devotional as a formatted,printable PDF to share with friends:
http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day05print.pdf
-----------------------------------------------------
Mike, have a blessed Sunday!
For Life,
David BereitNational Director40 Days for Life

Saturday, September 26, 2009

DAY 4: Unexpected blessings

Dear Mike,
One of the unexpected blessings of this 40 Days forLife campaign thus far is the unprecedented number ofmedia stories about local campaigns -- and it's notjust the number of stories but the tone of thosereports. Many of them have been highly positive!
An extremely favorable article about the 40 Days forLife kickoff appeared in the Journal Star, the dailynewspaper in Peoria, Illinois. Here's the first partof that story:
Cathy Trowbridge had an abortion and lived to tell about it. Not overnight, mind you. But after 34 soul-searching years, the Princeton resident is silent no more.
"Not everybody can do this," Trowbridge said Tuesday night at a rally at Riverfront Park to launch the 40 Days for Life campaign. "Not everyone that has had an abortion can stand here and be able to face a crowd. But that courage comes from Him who selects those that can do it."
Trowbridge told a crowd of about 80 how she paid no attention 34 years ago to those praying in front of a clinic at 7405 N. University St. in Peoria and entered what is now National Health Care and had her pregnancy terminated.
"I didn't know what they were there for," Trowbridge said of the group whose successors intend to be in front of the clinic around the clock from Wednesday through Nov. 1. "I didn't allow myself to look at their signs and figure out what they said.
"I just knew that I was full of fear and desperation," Trowbridge continued. "And the people that counseled me told me that this is what I should do and this is where I should go. And because it was legal and lawful and because I usually did what I was told, I did. It wasn't until much later that I found out the truth."
Read the whole story at:
http://tinyurl.com/ydhfowq
What a powerful account -- and in a secularnewspaper! It's a valuable insight into the mind ofthe woman who seeks abortion, and something to keepin mind as you pray.
Abortion clearly leaves a lasting negative impact.
You even may meet someone at the 40 Days for Lifevigil in your own community who has a story similarto Cathy's. The 40 Days for Life team in Bakersfield,California knows it is more common than you mightthink. Here's a posting from their blog:
During Saturday's kickoff rally, a volunteer noticed a forlorn woman standing near the vigil signup sheets. "I sensed that God wanted me to talk to her," the volunteer said.
"Can I help you sign up for a time to pray at the vigil?" the volunteer asked. The woman seemed reluctant at first. As the volunteer continued to talk to her, eventually she opened up to share the internal struggle she was experiencing.
"Twenty-five years ago," she began, "I aborted my baby. Maybe if people like you had been there, my baby's life could have been saved."
During this 40 day prayer vigil, as you meet newpeople joining you in prayer along the sidewalksoutside abortion facilities and Planned Parenthoodoffices, remember that some of the vigil participantsthemselves are still struggling with their ownprivate pain, and pray that they will experience thefullness of God's healing grace.
Just this morning, at the 40 Days for Life vigil Iwas visiting in Lexington, Kentucky, two differentwomen told me that 40 Days for Life was the vehiclethat helped them to begin the healing process fromtheir past abortions. One lady even told me that40 Days for Life saved her from committing suicide.
Wow. We never know how God can work through ourprayers and faithful participation in this effort.
Please take time to pray at the nearest 40 Days forLife vigil. To find the one nearest to you, visit:
http://40daysforlife.com/location.cfm
Your prayers and presence DO make a difference!
Here's your devotional from Fr. Frank Pavone,national director of Priests for Life...
-----------------------------------------------------DAY 4 INTENTION-----------------------------------------------------
We ask God that we may understand the concept ofjustice, as a gift he gives and as a responsibilitythat shapes our work.
-----------------------------------------------------SCRIPTURE-----------------------------------------------------
Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness likea never-failing stream!
-- Amos 5:24
-----------------------------------------------------REFLECTION by Fr. Frank Pavone, Priests for Life-----------------------------------------------------
Justice, a key theme of the Scriptures, is somethingGod does and that we too must do.
When God intervenes to save his people when they arehelpless and in slavery in Egypt, he "does justice."He manifested his justice in the plagues that weresent upon Egypt, whereby Pharaoh was convinced thathe must let the people go. Justice is manifested as,in awe and wonder, God's people see the Red Sea openbefore them, allow them to pass without even gettingtheir feet wet, and then close again to drown theirpowerful enemies.
God is a God of Justice; he rescues us when we cannotsave ourselves. His justice, above all, is seen inJesus Christ, who, when we could not save ourselves,rescued us from the kingdom of sin, Satan, death, andhell. The mighty work of Christ on the cross and inthe resurrection is the perfect manifestation of Godas the God of justice.
We, then, are to be the people of justice; we are to"do justice" by intervening to save the helpless inthe name and by the power of the God who saves us whoare helpless ourselves. That's why we have a pro-lifemovement; that's why we have a 40 Days for LifeCampaign; that's why saving the unborn is ourbusiness.
-----------------------------------------------------PRAYER-----------------------------------------------------
God of Justice, you heard the cry of your people whenthey were being oppressed in Egypt, and you provedyourself to be the God of justice, who rescues thehelpless. You likewise rescued us from the kingdom ofdarkness, and brought us into the Kingdom of yourBeloved Son, Jesus Christ, who saves us from thepower of Satan, sin, death, and hell.
Make us people of justice, ready to intervene to savethe helpless. Indeed, as your prophets haveannounced, let justice roll on like a mighty river,to save all who are in need, especially the unborn.We pray through Christ our Lord, Amen.
-----------------------------------------------------PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL-----------------------------------------------------
To download today's devotional as a formatted,printable PDF to share with friends:
http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day04print.pdf
-----------------------------------------------------
For Life,
David BereitNational Director40 Days for Life

Friday, September 25, 2009

DAY 3: Abortion worker quits!

Dear Mike,

In my message to you on Tuesday, I said, "When it
comes to 40 Days for Life, expect the unexpected!"

And yes, even though I said that, the e-mail message
I received from Tim Palmquist with the 40 Days for
Life team in Bakersfield, California was REALLY
unexpected.

Tim wrote, "An employee of the Bakersfield Family
Planning Association abortion center has just quit!"

The woman walked out of the building and spoke to
Rosa, who was taking part in the prayer vigil, and
told her, "I'm done with this place!" The woman also
said she had turned in her uniform. Rosa quickly
offered a hug, which the former employee accepted.

All this time, another vigil participant was
watching. It was the first time she had ever gone to
pray at an abortion center. Rosa turned to her and
said, "Do you see the power of prayer?" After seeing
this amazing turn of events, the new volunteer said
she wants to spend much more time at the vigil during
these 40 days.

This happened Wednesday -- yes, the FIRST DAY of this
40 Days for Life campaign!

WOW!

Jim in Green Bay, Wisconsin writes, "Michael and I
just walked the first shift of this year's vigil." He
and Michael really didn't know each other well at
first. "But now we do. 40 Days for Life has a way of
bringing folks together."

Jim describes the late night/early morning scene as
warm, slightly muggy, but beautifully quiet. "We
counted three horn honks with thumbs-up signals," he
noted. "We also spoke to a young couple who were
walking across the hospital parking lot. The young
woman saw our signs and shouted encouragement saying,
'We're not aborting! We're having a baby!' Michael
and I shouted back our approval and encouragement.

Michael observed how we never, ever know how our
presence impacts people. This vigil, like the prayer
that it is, reaches far beyond those whom we can see
and feel and touch -- which is just how the hand of
God operates.

And that is so true!

You can almost feel it, just by looking at the
pictures I received from the first day of the 40 Days
for Life vigil in Houston, and the kickoff event for
40 Days for Life in Dallas:

http://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=279

As a former resident of Texas (who is married to a
native Texan) I'm really not trying to single out the
Lone Star State, but the hand of God is also evident
in Lubbock, where Day 1 of 40 Days for Life dawned
with a feature article in the local newspaper:

When Eric Lopez found out he was going to be an
uncle, he was overjoyed. The thought never crossed
his mind that his sister would choose not to have
the baby as planned, and would instead choose to
have an abortion. "I think about my unborn nephew,
and how old he should be now," the Texas Tech
business student said. "We can take things for
granted." That's why nearly six years later, Lopez
is working to inform the community about his
family's experience with abortions through the
40 Days for Life campaign...

You can read the whole article from the Lubbock
Avalanche Journal at:

http://tinyurl.com/yb6kreh

I just have this feeling that this is going to be an
especially powerful 40 Days for Life campaign because
of the amazing way hearts and minds are already being
changed -- one at a time.

Here's today's devotional from Dennis DiMauro, of
Lutherans for Life...

------------------------------
-----------------------
DAY 3 INTENTION
-----------------------------------------------------

We pray for God's gift of strength as we strive to
protect human life during these 40 Days for Life.

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SCRIPTURE
-----------------------------------------------------

Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life,
what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what
you will wear. Is not life more important than food,
and the body more important than clothes? Look at the
birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store
away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds
them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

-- Matthew 6:25-26

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REFLECTION by Dennis DiMauro, Lutherans for Life
-----------------------------------------------------

Billions of dollars are spent each year on diet
plans. But Jesus tells us to stop worrying so much
about our bodies, and instead to trust in God's care
for our physical needs.

What would happen if the people who had started on a
low-carb diet this year had instead gone on a diet of
heavenly food? For non-believers that diet would
include trusting in Christ for their salvation, and
for believers it would include a renewed prayer life,
a new Bible study, or even a spiritual fast. This
diet doesn't include giving up on certain kinds of
foods. What this diet includes is giving up on
anxiety by resting in the loving arms of Christ,
trusting that He will provide.

Such a spiritual diet also frees us from our worries,
and allows us to freely praise Him and serve others.
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life,
what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what
you will wear. Is not life more important than food,
and the body more important than clothes? Look at the
birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store
away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds
them. Are you not much more valuable than they?"

This promised provision teaches us the inestimable
worth of our lives. He will not allow us to go
without. This intimate knowledge and care for human
life on the part of our gracious God is what
motivates us to seek for the preservation of human
life in all its stages.

-----------------------------------------------------
PRAYER
-----------------------------------------------------

Loving heavenly Father, help us to see the worth of
all human beings by the way in which you provide for
us. We would ask that you provide also the faith,
grace and courage to enable us to protect that which
is so precious to you. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.

-----------------------------------------------------
PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL
-----------------------------------------------------

To download today's devotional as a formatted,
printable PDF to share with friends:

http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day03print.pdf

-----------------------------------------------------

For Life,

David Bereit
National Director
40 Days for Life

Thursday, September 24, 2009

DAY 2: Baby saved at kickoff event!

Dear Mike,

You know 40 Days for Life is off to a great start
when there's a report of a baby saved from abortion
-- at a pre-campaign kickoff event!

The 40 Days for Life team in St. Louis began a day of
preparation prior to the campaign with prayer at a
local church, followed by more prayer on the sidewalk
in front of the Planned Parenthood abortion center --
prayer that was joined by more than 100 people.

At the St. Louis kickoff rally that evening, "we
sang, prayed and had a chance to meet many new
people," said local coordinator Brian Westbrook. "God
truly blessed us with an exciting night."

But the excitement was just beginning. At the end of
the long day, Brian went home, checked his e-mail and
found this message:

"I just wanted to let you know that today just
before we left the clinic, as we were wrapping up
and praying together, one of the sidewalk
counselors came over and let us know that a couple
who had gone into the clinic in the morning had
just left and decided to keep their baby. So praise
God, I believe that's the first fruits of what's to
come over the next 40 days."

Brian said, "What an incredible start to these 40
Days for Life. I cannot wait to see what God has in
store for us this fall. Keep praying and fasting and
one day we will see an end to abortion."

Positive reports from kickoff events and news stories
about 40 Days for Life are pouring in from across
North America as the campaign is getting off to an
incredible start in over 200 locations.

Some of these locations have just been visited by
40 Days for Life's campaign director Shawn Carney,
who got to meet many enthusiastic people in South
Bend, Fort Wayne and Indianapolis, Indiana, before
heading back home to help kick off his local 40 Days
for Life campaign in Bryan/College Station, Texas.

There's a picture of Shawn and his wife, Marilisa,
flanked by members of the 40 Days for Life team in
Indianapolis posted at:

http://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=269

And here's where you can listen to the recording of
the electrifying talk Shawn gave at the kickoff event
in South Bend:

http://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=269

If you're not charged up about 40 Days for Life yet,
you surely will be after listening to Shawn!

Yes, this 40 Days for Life campaign is indeed getting
off to a fast start ...

... But 40 Days for Life is also getting off to a
small start. And that's a good thing, too.

Let me explain ...

God is already providing what a member of our
Buffalo, New York team calls "small successes."

Liz's pastor permitted her to speak about 40 Days for
Life at church last Sunday. After she finished, the
pastor added his own endorsement of 40 Days for Life.

After church, about 80 people signed up to pray and
fast for an end to abortion -- including ten people
who registered for a prayer shift at the vigil
outside the abortion center.

Imagine if that happened at every church in every
40 Days for Life community. And it could!

Why not ask your pastor if information about 40 Days
for Life can be presented to your church? Those small
successes could add up pretty quickly!

I am confident that over the course of these 40 days,
that God's victories will multiply over and over
again. Please continue to hold this 40 Days for Life
effort in your prayers.

Here's today's devotional from Fr. Frank Pavone,
National Director of Priests for Life...

------------------------------
-----------------------
DAY 2 INTENTION
-----------------------------------------------------

Pray for those who work in the abortion industry, and
for those who have repented of committing abortions
and have resolved to defend life.

-----------------------------------------------------
SCRIPTURE
-----------------------------------------------------

Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into
your hands I commit my spirit." When he had said
this, he breathed his last. The centurion, seeing
what had happened, praised God and said, "Surely this
was a righteous man."

-- Luke 23:46-47

-----------------------------------------------------
REFLECTION by Fr. Frank Pavone, Priests for Life
-----------------------------------------------------

"Those of us who have participated in the killing of
unborn children are the Centurions of today. We have
dropped our swords against the unborn child. Now we
must recognize the depth of our guilt and deal with
the ramifications... To revitalize our humanity we
need to forgive and be forgiven, to reconcile and be
healed."

These words come from a brochure of the Society of
Centurions, an organization for former abortion
providers. These words convey in a beautiful and
moving way what is happening across the nation as
hundreds of abortionists and their staff members
experience repentance, conversion, and healing.

How does this conversion begin? Dr. Philip Ney
writes, "The factors that changed their opinion on
performing abortions, in the following order of
frequency, were: evidence of the infant's humanity, a
spiritual experience, personal distress, evidence of
the mother's distress, scientific articles, being
accepted as a person, a personal relationship with a
pro-lifer, pro-life pickets." (The Centurion's
Pathway, p. 77).

The journey is not easy. But the Jesus who heals us
calls us to face the truth of what we've done, make
restitution where possible, and engage in the hard
work of mending relationships. Let's pray for the
Centurions; may their numbers increase!

-----------------------------------------------------
PRAYER
-----------------------------------------------------

Lord, we thank you for those who have repented of
committing abortions and have resolved to defend
life. We too repent and resolve.

We repent of every instance in which fear has made us
silent when we should have spoken. We repent of the
ongoing bloodshed in our land, and for thinking that
we can deprive the unborn of protection but keep it
for ourselves.

We resolve that we will advance the cause of
righteous candidates for public office, and that we
will be more afraid of offending you by our silence
than of offending others by our speech. We resolve
that we will proclaim your name to the nations,
through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

-----------------------------------------------------
PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL
-----------------------------------------------------

To download today's devotional as a formatted,
printable PDF to share with friends:

http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day02print.pdf

-----------------------------------------------------

On the eve of the kickoff of this 40 Days for Life, I
was at an exciting event with numerous 40 Days for
Life people from Maryland and Delaware. In a few
hours I'll be on a plane heading to Louisville and
Lexington, Kentucky where I'll be visiting 40 Days
for Life locations.

I've never seen the intensity of excitement that
we're seeing this early in a campaign -- this is
going to be a GREAT 40 Days for Life!

For Life,

David Bereit
National Director
40 Days for Life

P.S.- WOW! I just finished listening to Shawn's South
Bend talk while typing this message to you. As an old
Texas friend of mine says, "if that don't light your
fire, then your wood's wet!" Listen to this right now
-- you'll be glad you did:

http://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=269

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Fall 2009 40 Days For Life Campaign

I will be posting the daily emails I receive as part of the 40 Days For Life Campaign. You can also visit their website, which I have posted on my sidebar. These are very inspirational emails with updates on amazing stories across the country and a daily devotional. It is a great way to start your day. If you are not already taking part in 40 Days For Life, I highly encourage you to get involved. At the very least, visit my blog daily so that you can read these great devotionals. I pray that through the grace of God, many great things will come from this most recent 40 Days For Life campaign and many hearts will be moved. God Bless!
---
Dear Mike,

The Day 1 devotional (below) begins with the words of
Scripture, "Blow the trumpet in Zion!" Well, the
trumpet has sounded and the fall 40 Days for Life
campaign has officially begun.

These next 40 days will be an awesome journey as,
together, we embark on the largest single coordinated
pro-life mission ever conducted.

Tens of thousands of people across 212 cities are
uniting in this prayerful effort -- as well as
countless others in places from coast to coast who
will be praying from their homes and churches --
imploring God to end the scourge of abortion.

For this effort to have grown to such an amazing size
-- and to have already saved 1,561 children from
abortion over the last two years -- is, to me, proof
that this is God's work.

HE is the answer to this crisis of abortion, so let's
pray harder than we've ever prayed before!

And speaking of blowing the trumpet, I can't help but
mention how effectively many of the local 40 Days for
Life campaigns are "tooting their horns" about this
effort. Media outlets across the country are buzzing
with news reports about this fall's campaign.

Here are just a few examples...

In Dayton, Ohio –- The Dayton Daily News covered the
local campaign's kickoff event. Rev. Mike Spencer of
Grace Missionary Church told the crowd about learning
the truth about abortion after he became a Christian
and decided to be "a voice for the unborn." Cincinnati
Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk led prayer and added, "If
we don't have reverence for human life, we are easing
ourselves into a society in which nobody is safe. If
you can kill little babies, you can kill anybody."

In Columbia, Missouri –- Kathy Forck is helping lead
that community's first 40 Days for Life campaign. "All
we want are prayers," she told the reporter for the
Columbia Missourian. "We just encourage people of
faith to come out here and stand up for the little
ones that can't stand up for themselves." A friend had
invited Kathy to pray at the clinic last spring and
she quickly realized she had to do more. "We can't
just stop," she said.

In the Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas area -- Local leaders
for two campaigns appeared on Dave Palmer's KATH-AM
radio talk show to spread the word about 40 Days for
Life. Milissa Kukla is the Dallas coordinator, and
Jeff Williams handles the Fort Worth campaign. They
were also joined by Laura Barker, who was part of the
first-ever 40 Days for Life campaign in Bryan/College
Station, Texas in 2004.

Listen to part of that interview online at:

http://40daysforlife.com/blog/?p=262

40 Days for Life is the collective effort of ordinary
people asking the Lord to act in an extraordinary way.

What will He do through YOUR prayers, fasting, and
participation in 40 Days for Life this fall?

I don't know, but I can't wait for you to let us know!

Here's today's devotional from David Brandao, the
communications director for 40 Days for Life...

------------------------------
-----------------------
DAY 1 INTENTION
-----------------------------------------------------

That we may use these 40 Days for Life to plead for
God's mercy and grace upon all those involved in the
sin of abortion.

-----------------------------------------------------
SCRIPTURE
-----------------------------------------------------

Blow the trumpet in Zion! Proclaim a fast, call an
assembly. Gather the people, notify the congregation.
Assemble the elders; gather the children and the
infants at the breast... Let the priests, the
ministers of the Lord, weep and say, "Spare, O Lord,
your people."

-- Joel 2:15-17

-----------------------------------------------------
REFLECTION by David Brandao, 40 Days for Life
-----------------------------------------------------

The toll of abortion cannot be measured. We hear
estimates of almost 50 million innocent victims, but
that's only one aspect of the harm that has unfolded
in abortion's wake. There are also the mothers and
fathers of these millions, as well as the
grandparents, brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles,
cousins. Unborn lives destroyed. Lives of the living
shattered.

It's overwhelming and depressing, but even in the
midst of such unfathomable darkness, the church
teaches us to have hope. Yes, it was indeed Calvary
that followed Christ's 40 days in the desert, but
without Calvary there would have been no Resurrection
-- His victory over death that opened the gates of
heaven to those who believe in and follow Him.

The psalmist encourages us to go humbly before God as
we seek His will: "A clean heart create for me, O
God, and a steadfast spirit renew within me... Give
me back the joy of your salvation and a willing
spirit sustain in me... O Lord, open my lips, and my
mouth shall proclaim your praise" (Psalm 51:12, 14, 17).

We are called to be God's messengers; or as the
Apostle Paul told the Corinthians: "We are
ambassadors for Christ, as if God were appealing
through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ: be
reconciled to God" (2 Corinthians 5:20).

That is the true message to all we encounter at the
abortion centers and in our communities who have been
deceived by the Culture of Death. We don't bring
condemnation; we bring God's good news.

-----------------------------------------------------
PRAYER
-----------------------------------------------------

Lord, we ask for the strength, courage, wisdom,
determination and stamina to carry out this mission
according to Your will.

Guide us, we pray, as we go forth and proclaim Your
truth, always doing so with a spirit of love and
compassion, as was demonstrated to us by Your Son,
Jesus Christ. In His name we pray, Amen.

-----------------------------------------------------
PRINTABLE DEVOTIONAL
-----------------------------------------------------

To download today's devotional as a formatted,
printable PDF to share with friends:

http://40daysforlife.com/docs/fall2009day01print.pdf

-----------------------------------------------------

For Life,

David Bereit
National Director
40 Days for Life

Monday, September 14, 2009

Security Guards Celebrate UGA's Victory

...while standing right behind South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier. Haha, that is awesome!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

This Will Make You Cry

Choosing Thomas

Obama's Speech on Health Care

President is very passionate about the issue of Health Care reform, and I can respect him for that. Unfortunately, his plan is unbelievable. There is no way in the world that his plan could improve health care, cover the uninsured, and reduce cost through a government plan. There are solutions to these problems but government run health care is not that solution. He did say that no federal tax dollars would be used to fund abortion, but I am very skeptical about this claim. If this is true, why were all the amendments to specifically exclude taxpayer funding of abortion defeated? He claims that a government run health care system would not lead to rationing, but everywhere where government health care has been instituted rationing has been a serious problem. People have to wait a looong time to get care often for very serious sickness and sometimes they don't even receive care because the government decides that it's not financially beneficial. We need health care reform President Obama, just not the reform you are asking us to buy. We're not stupid. Let's focus on common sense reforms that we can all agree on and that will not increase costs and the national debt.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Do You Know Your Guardian Angel's Name?

I was listening to the Catholic Guy Show a while back and the topic of guardian angels was brought up. Some callers called in and mentioned how they prayed a prayer before bed asking their guardian angel to reveal himself when they waked. When they waked, the first name that popped into their head was the name of their guardian angel. Although I was skeptical, I was curious so I tried it out and when I woke the morning after I said the prayer to my guardian angel, the name Rafael popped into my head. Whether that is truly the name of my guardian angel or if my guardian angel even has a name I do not really know, but from now on I'll address my guardian angel as Rafael. If you are curious like I was, give it a try. Did it work for you?

Monday, September 7, 2009

Five Planned Parenthood Centers In Indiana To Close

Amid controversy that two Planned Parenthood Centers covered up sexual abuse, 5 centers in Indiana will be closing. The Planned Parenthood in Anderson, my hometown, is one of the 5 centers being closed! Praise God! Kokomo, another city where I have family ties, is also closing their Planned Parenthood Center. This is great news! 5 down, 29 to go Indiana.

Five Planned Parenthood Centers To Close

Labor Day Weekend - Helen, GA

We spent a relaxing weekend in Helen, GA. The highlight was hiking to see Anna Ruby Falls.


video

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I'm Proud To Have This Man Represent My District

Tom Price has a real plan for health care reform. God-willing, opponents will start listening to his words and the words of millions of like-minded Americans.