In Jeremiah 1:5 God tells Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you. Before you were born, I set you apart…”.
This means that before Jeremiah ever knew God, God knew Jeremiah. It also means that before you ever knew God, God knew you. Before the foundations of the world were laid, Jeremiah was set apart to be with God and to love and serve God. The same is also true for you.
God’s purposes for you go back before your birth, before you were conceived, and before the world was created. Long before you thought God was important, God thought you were important. Long before you ever heard the name of Jesus Christ, Christ had already committed to dying for you so that you could live a life truly worth living – a life lived in hope.
Today, in one of the most historic rulings of the last fifty years, the United States Supreme Court overturned Roe vs Wade. This is a giant step toward protecting life, particularly the life of the unborn. It is a giant step toward honoring the fact that God knows and has a purpose for each and every human being – a purpose formed before the creation of the world.
However, to be clear, the overturning of Roe vs Wade does not make abortion illegal. It simply puts the authority to ban, regulate, or promote abortion into the hands of each state. This will both change and charge the political landscape of the United States. Our deeply divided nation will now be more divided than at any point in recent history.
So, what does this mean for us as Christian members of our society? What do we do and how are we supposed to act in light of this ruling?
First, we need to humble ourselves and pray. This is not the time for gloating. We are not called to create or exacerbate division. Our social media posts should not be “in your face”. Instead, in our prayers, we can ask God to show us how to be a part of the solution, part of the healing our nation so desperately needs, healing that can only be found through the love of Jesus Christ. The reality is that Jesus died for us all – he died for those who are feeling challenged and hopeless because they are faced with an unexpected pregnancy. He died for the unwed mother, many of whom are now more scared than ever. He died for the father who may not have any say in whether his child will be given life. He died for those who have nowhere to turn. He died for those who feel like abortion is the only option. He died for those who are grieving the abortions they have had. The list goes on. First and foremost, we should be praying and lifting all these and more up before the Throne of Grace of our Lord and Savior.
Second, we need to find ways to truly support life. It is not enough to say that we support life. We need to put our money where our mouths are and actually support life. This means reaching out and supporting those who are faced with unexpected pregnancies, helping them to see life as a viable option. And that means we need to be there for women (and men!) who have decided to keep pregnancies viable. We need to be willing to walk alongside them and help them to prepare for their future. This means we as individuals and in our churches, need to love and support unwed mothers and fathers both during their pregnancy and especially after their child has been born. These young families, whether traditional families or not, need spiritual support, financial support, and physical support. They need to know that someone is willing and eager to walk alongside them throughout their journey. We, as the Church, should be leading the way in this arena. People need to know that we will be there for them for the long haul. They need to know that if they choose life, we will continue to support them in that choice. If more people believed this to be true, perhaps more people would choose life.
Third, we need to offer such support in a way that shows the unconditional love of Christ. Love is not love if there are stings attached. Love is not love if it is only given to those who love us. To love as Jesus loves is to live and serve with agape love, the sacrificial love that is given freely while expecting nothing in return. To truly support life, then, means that we are to love and support those facing unexpected pregnancies regardless of their faith affiliations or lack thereof, regardless of their past experiences, regardless of how they see their future. Protecting life can have no qualifiers. Jesus died for the pre-born child and we are called to be Christ’s hands and feet in this world for everyone, not just those who look like, think like, or believe like us.
So, while today is an historic day, the real work for the Church is just beginning: the work to actually love and support those who may not see life as an option and the work of loving and supporting those who will choose life. If we truly believe God’s Word in Jeremiah 1:5, “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you. Before you were born, I set you apart…” then we will recognize that God called us to be His Church for such a time as this – to love and support those whom God has lovingly created and set apart.
Once again, long before you thought God was important, God thought you were important. Long before you ever heard the name of Jesus Christ, Christ had already committed to dying for you so that you could live a life truly worth living – a life lived in hope. May we glorify God in word and deed as we strive to help others realize this too.