Being a pro-life activist isn’t easy. No matter what occupation you’re involved in, there are always those days when you feel like you can’t get out of bed in the morning. Yet, in a particular way, this can be even more true for those of us who work fulltime for the pro-life cause. Some days you want to give up.
I can recall thinking, “If I watch another pro-life movie I’ll get sick,” or “Do I have to go to another speaking engagement?” Even worse than this is the frustration I sometimes feel when I’m on the sidewalk, at the abortion chamber. There are times when I feel very sad and depressed over another woman who refused to listen and who had her baby killed. There are times when I feel very sad and depressed over another woman who refused to listen and who had her baby killed. There are times I feel a certain anger toward those who exploit the women and kill the babies for monetary gain. There are times when I’d like to holler back at someone who has just called me a four-letter word. Yes, there are times when I feel less than a Christian about what I am doing, and bitterness and anger try to enter my heart.
It is at these very times that I remember a saying a wise old monk told me once, “Much prayer , much power. Little prayer, little power. No prayer, no power.” For me, the starting point of all my actions must be prayer. I know from past failure that action before prayer gets me into trouble. When I think back to those particularly sad, angry, or frustrated times, I am able to see a pattern of little or no prayer. This can be dangerous.
We must remember that when it comes to abortion, we are fighting a spiritual war. For “our battle is not against human forces but against the principalities and powers, the rulers of this world of darkness, the evil spirits in regions above” (Ephesians 6:12). Paul says, “Finally, draw your strength from the Lord and His mighty power” (Ephesians 6:10). It is important to realize that alone we are no match for Satan. We need the strength which comes from the Lord. Paul reminds us, “At every opportunity pray in the Spirit, using prayers and petitions of every sort” (Ephesians 6:18).
I believe that one of Satan’s goals is to fill the heart of the pro-lifer with anger, bitterness and frustration. Anger and hatred are powerful enough to destroy the work of the Lord. Love is the only power great enough to destroy the work of the Enemy.
Our hearts must be filled with the love of the Lord if we are to be truly successful in this fight against the wickedness of abortion. If we do not place prayer before action, bitterness, anger and hatred will fill our hearts.
Without prayer as the starting point of our action, we can get off track. We become angry. Instead of saving babies, our motive becomes “harassing the abortionists.” We begin to plot against those who kill children, instead of loving them and focusing our attention toward saving babies and the mothers they live within.
Harassment is not Christian. We cannot be out to “get the abortionists.” Our motives must be Jesus-centred. We can hate sin, but we must love the sinners. Jesus said so. When prayer is not a part of our daily lives, we can get tunnel vision. Jesus wants us to see the “big picture.” We must try to save the unborn and the abortion centre employees. Both need our love.
If you find that you’re getting a little ‘frazzled’ over your pro-life work, stop and ask yourself, “Did I really take time today to allow the Lord to give me His strength to fight this battle?” If not, I suggest that you go beck to the starting point of all action, which is prayer. Life will work much better!
Michael Gaworski is president of Pro-Life Action Ministries, St. Paul, Minnesota.