Our Lenten journey has begun. How is everyone doing so far?
Among the words of Jesus from today’s Gospel, we read the following:
“If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself
and take up his cross daily and follow me.”
These three things Our Lord requires of us are NOT EASY, but they are necessary for being His disciples. This might mean we go to pray at Planned Parenthood when we don’t feel like it. It may mean showing charity to an angry person on the sidewalk. It may mean NOT having an abortion when everything else in life seems to point to no other alternative. These can be hard things to face.
But as Christians, followers and disciples of Jesus, we are given what we need through the power of the Holy Spirit working in and through us. He is the One Who gives us the strength we need to do these hard things.
Reports from the Sidewalk:
Meet Tom and Diane! Most of us never see them. They set up very early for our first shift & they take it all apart at the end of the day. Forty days of providing all the materials we need. Thank you, Diane & Tom! You are the best!
Our shift started with Meredith, Chuck, Pastor Joe and Judy from Lincoln Place Church of the Nazarene. As we arrived, we found that three people had already gone in. As our shift started, several women walked in but were not interested in receiving any information. There were also two or three guys who walked in for services as well. There was fairly heavy traffic going in.
We had a lady stop and look at the fetal models, and she asked me if people really killed babies. We gave her some abortion statistics and she could hardly believe it. She said that her daughter was just now pregnant, and her boyfriend had left her and she was afraid her daughter was going to have an abortion. We were able to have prayer with her for her daughter and unborn baby. She also took information for free resources for her daughter.
We also had an opportunity to speak with a mom, her teenage son and his teenage girlfriend who was living with them. They said the girlfriend was just going in for a gyne appointment. We were not sure what the true case was, but they did receive resource information from us.
It was just Lisa and Linda for a cold two hours on the sidewalk today. Bob (pictured) joined us briefly for prayer. It was nice to see the sun finally move up the sidewalk for the shift following ours, so that those on the next shift could be warmed.
Several people went in and out of Planned Parenthood. One woman, carrying a bag that probably contained abortion pills, launched into a blasphemous, profanity-ridden tirade when we approached her with offers of help. It was sad to see how full of anger she was.
Besides trying to save babies, we are there to bless and pray for the lost.
Father Jim and I had a wonderful afternoon. We were saying the rosary and we got to talk to a lot of people. One lady was saying she would spread the word for us. I gave information to a couple that came out of Planned Parenthood, and to another lady that asked us for information so she could talk to her friends about our help for the babies. It was a good day.
Looking back to the Gospel verse from above, we see that sometimes the denial of self that Jesus calls us to is for a purpose higher than ourselves. Perhaps it’s so we can become MOMS. One of the very highest callings there is.