This verse has been one that has been in the forefront of my mind and in my prayers for the past two weeks. I think the Lord is keeping this verse front and center for me because I am so weak by nature. Running a race is not what I want to do. Training for a race is not appealing to me. My nature is not easily disciplined. I like rest, comfort, ease, food and wine. (Lots of wine!) If the Lord had not broken my heart over abortion years ago and called me into the fellowship of so many faithful pro life Christians, I am afraid that I would have made a terrible mess of my life by now. But in His wonderful love and goodness…God did not leave me to rot in my own weakness! By working in the pro life movement, surrounded by so many faithful Christians, He has helped me to grow spiritually. He is what sustains me.
As I meditated on this verse this morning, the image of a tomato vine came to mind. I thought about how heavy the fruit of the vine is, and how if it is not supported by a “cage”, it just lays in the dirt and rots. It occurred to me that every one of our prayers, acts of devotion and acts of kindness to others are places where the vine of our lives attaches us to God. HE is the “cage” that is holding up the heavy fruit of our lives! Without the structure and the discipline of prayer and acts of charity, our weakness will destroy us. As St. Paul said, “His power is made perfect in our weakness”. Although from my perspective, it seems to be that MY WEAKNESS is made perfect in HIS STRENGTH!
Last Friday, as I prayed during my weekly shift as a sidewalk advocate in front of Planned Parenthood…after talking with so many people whose hearts seem to be hopelessly hardened…I decided to simply kneel and pray, and let my body posture say the words I couldn’t say. As I was kneeling, watching couple after couple walk through those terrible doors…I had the thought that the circle that surrounds the doors of Planned Parenthood is like a sink-hole, into which so many souls are lost. It is terribly discouraging for us to watch, but it occurred to me that although we are watching those who are being lost in that great sink-hole…God is using our presence there as a fence to keep out those who He is planning to save. There are those who see us praying and will come to realize the value of life, and a seed is planted. Those who are tempted to abort see us and their minds are changed. Someone comes to Planned Parenthood for an abortion appointment, sees our witness, and silently turns away without ever telling us.
So, as we prepare to embark on this 40 day journey of prayer, penance, acts of charity, let’s be encouraged that by clinging to God and trusting in Him, He will bring good fruit from our efforts! He will use our witness on the sidewalk to save lives and souls, and He will lift our heavy weakness in his strong hands!
Check out the vigil schedule to see where you can help by CLICKING HERE. Let me know where you can help. My most pressing needs right now are the following:
- Friday, March 8 from 3-5pm (someone to pray with Pat)
- Saturday, March 9 from 3-5pm (someone to pray with Katie B.)
- Saturday, March 9 from 5-7pm (someone to pray with Jeff)
Please also consider helping to kick off our 40 days in a spiritually powerful way by FASTING on Day # 1. I realize that Ash Wednesday is a day of fasting anyway, but please consider going the extra mile and making it a day of bread and water or liquids. Sign up to help us to fill our 40 day fast by CLICKING HERE
Finally, join us for our Kick-off pro-life Mass and prayer procession from St. Pat’s in the Strip to Planned Parenthood on Tuesday, March 5th. For details, CLICK HERE. And when you come to the sidewalk to pray, remember to bring a flower in memory of a precious life lost.
Thank you for running this race along with me and so many brothers and sisters! I look forward to running with you!