Thursday, July 31, 2014
Penciled Prayers: Equitable Judgment at the Abortion Clinic
"Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; the world and those who dwell in it! Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills sing for joy together before the Lord, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity" (Psalm 98:7-9).
O great God and King, the righteous Judge of all creation: I praise You, Lord. This is the day that You have made. I will rejoice and be glad in it.
But Lord, I will need Your help. Holy Spirit, I will need Your help. For as You know, I will spend a few hours outside an abortuary, this morning. It is the most difficult place in the world for me to rejoice. The light and casual conversation with fellow Christians with whom I join in the work sometimes seem wholly inappropriate. And the lighthearted or humorous moments seem almost profane, considering the context.
Father, unless You intervene, unless You miraculously change minds bent on murder, babies will die, today. Even now, men and women are dressing, not for work, but to come to the abortuary to slaughter their unborn children. Some, because of the wickedness of their hearts, will see it as a good thing. Others will come, knowing what they're about to do is wrong, but they will do it anyway. Their hearts are wicked, too. Some will come intent on murdering their children, but change their minds. Their hearts are also wicked, for they had already murdered their children in their hearts, before they changed their minds. They are all detestable in Your sight, Lord.
And "You will judge the world with righteousness and the peoples with equity." Whether an abortive mother or an Islamic terrorist, whether an abortive father or the man who kidnaps, rapes, and murders small children--You will judge all murderers with equity. You will judge them all in righteousness, according to the perfect, moral standard of Your Law. And You are good, Lord. Whether You save or destroy, You are good.
But for Your grace and mercy shown to me through the propitiatory, ransom-paying sacrifice on my behalf, I too would face Your fierce, just, good, and holy wrath. Thanks be to You, Lord, for Your indescribably gift!
Father, while I praise You for Your righteousness and justice, my prayer is that the murderers I will meet today will not, in the end, face Your wrath. O Lord, please save them! Cause them to be born-again! Do not break the spider's thread to which they are attached, which precariously suspends them over the pit of hell. Let them not fall into the pit of eternal torment. Please save them, O Lord!
O Father, I pray that every abortuary worker feels sick to their stomachs, today, at even the thought of participating in the murder of even one more child. Disturb their minds. Trouble their hearts. Unsettle their consciences, even the ones that are most seared by hate, lust, greed, and depraved indifference. Yes Lord, please, crush their godless worldviews that see murder of the unborn as good. And then bring them to genuine repentance, Lord. Give them the good, undeserved gifts of repentance and faith in You, Jesus Christ. And may some of the very first fruits of their salvation be quitting their jobs at the abortuary.
Father, for me, I ask that You would help me represent Your Son and His bride well, today. It is so very hard to love my neighbor (who is also my enemy) at abortuaries. My emotions sometimes get the better of me. There are times when I sinfully revile when reviled--times when I respond in kind. Lord, far be it from me to try to justify my sin. Against You, and You alone, have I sinned and have done what is evil in Your sight. You are righteous when You judge. You are good and loving when You discipline. Please forgive me, Lord.
Holy Spirit, sanctify my heart and mind with Your Truth. Please conform me this morning as I stand outside the abortuary. Conform me in thought, word, and deed to the image of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. May I serve and represent You well this morning, Lord Jesus. And, if called upon to provide leadership, instruction, or example to my Christian brothers and sisters with whom I will serve, today, please help me to do so with deep and sacrificial love for them--seeing them as much more important than myself. And please allow me to do so in such a way that will bring You, Lord, the greatest pleasure and the greatest glory.
Father, You are the righteous Judge who will judge all peoples with equity. While You will ultimately receive glory through every moment of triumph and tragedy in the lives of all mankind, I ask, Lord, that this morning, at this wicked place of death, You will choose to glorify Yourself through the saving of unborn children and through saving the souls of the men and women hell-bent on murdering them.
In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.