Last Saturday’s message dealt with the presence of
children at 40 Days for Life prayer vigils, and how
some people question the idea of having children pray
outside the abortion centers. As always, the Holy
Spirit has provided the final word: Bring the kids!
Ernie and Mary Beth are the coordinators of 40 Days
for Life in Pensacola, Florida. And wherever you see
Ernie and Mary Beth, you see their four children. And
of course, they were at the abortion facility this
past Saturday — the day that our e-mail message was
about children praying at the vigils.
The first good sign on this very windy day in
Pensacola was the fact that the abortion center’s
parking lot was half empty. It’s usually jam-packed.
So that means fewer abortion appointments.
Before the day was over, FIVE MOTHERS decided to
reject abortion and spare their children!
In one instance, a group of women drove up in two cars.
One got out, turned towards the vigil participants and
asked, “Why do you have children out here?”
Ernie replied, “They are here praying for you and to
remind everyone that children are a wonderful gift.”
She stomped away.
Just a minute later, one of the women from this group
drove away — very angry. The others from the first
car came out the front door with a woman who had been
inside the abortion facility.
Ernie said that’s another good sign. “Anyone that
comes out the front door has NOT had an abortion.”
The same woman who questioned the presence of the
children did so again: “Why don’t you get these kids
away from here?”
Ernie answered, “We love you! We are here praying for
you and your friends.”
As they drove out, the young woman who had left the
abortion facility gave a big thumbs-up outside her
open window. She had indeed chosen life!
“This spring, my four children, who have been with us
every day during all four 40 Days for Life campaigns
in Pensacola, have begun to understand the importance
of prayer in front of the abortion facility,” Ernie
said. “My two oldest — 8 and 6 — have really been
praying a lot this spring with us.”
It was Ernie’s children that the angry woman was
complaining about. And it’s no wonder. The children’s
prayers may have made a world of difference to that
young mother who left the abortion center, determined
to let her own child live.
“I believe my children were used by the Holy Spirit to
change this woman’s mind,” he said. “Children do have
a tremendous impact on the mothers and fathers that
enter abortion facilities. Thank you, God, for the
wonderful gifts you have given me in my life — my
wonderful children and wife. I am so proud of them all!”
Today’s devotional is from Rev. Clenard Childress of
Life Education and Resources Network.
DAY 30 INTENTION
Let us pray that pastors may not be distracted from
the priority of caring for human lives.
In those days, when the number of the disciples was
multiplying, there arose a complaint against the
Hebrews by the Hellenists, because their widows were
neglected in the daily distribution.
— Acts 6:1
More folks learning left some yearning.
It is the dawning of a new day. There is much
excitement in Jerusalem. Many who dedicated themselves
to the faith became disciples (the word disciple means
The unprecedented church growth was miraculous and
undoubtedly brought much satisfaction to the new
leadership. The apostles, however, were about to
experience growing pains in their master plan of
Projects that engage the community, especially those
that are evangelistic in nature, are high on the list
of priorities for every duty-bound pastor.
Church attendance is a constant concern for every
pastor and often his or her worth is measured by it.
Unfortunately, just as the original twelve pastors in
Acts, they can be so focused on getting people in that
they inadvertently end up pushing some people out.
Murmuring is a deplorable deterrent to a harmonious
fellowship, yet God used it to get the disciples
attention. Those that needed daily attention due to
their age and social status were being neglected.
This neglect of the Hellenist widows during the daily
distribution of food was causing undue grief and
needed to be corrected by the leadership. By God’s
grace the problem was dealt with, but the lesson
And during these 40 days, let us pray that today’s
church not make the same mistake of forgetting the
contributions of our seniors, or the needs of the
weakest among us, the unborn.
Father, in the Church’s desire to engage our
communities with the Gospel let her not disengage from
those who need their care and company the most.
Let us gain wisdom from those who have gone before us
and cherish their experiences and perspectives. Help
us to appreciate every soul in the body of Christ and
minister properly to everybody. Amen.