Experiencing Fear

Dear Christian Sisters and Brothers,

Have you experienced fear or anxiety during this 2020 pandemic?

Fear and the Pandemic

Fear of getting sick with COVID-19? Fear of someone you love getting sick?

Fear of needing to go to the hospital for another health issue with so many others being treated there with COVID-19?

Fear of getting sick and not having family there to help in your time of need?

Fear of judgment and being ostracized because you’re sneezing, which is likely a reaction to pollen rather than a virus?

Fear of losing your job? or fear because you’ve already lost your job, and you’re not sure how you’re going to pay bills?

Many people have been sitting in fear for the last two months. But there is another way to experience the 2020 pandemic—and any other life test thrown your way: The Hope of Christ.

Agape Love Casts Out Fear

You’ve heard this many times before in church, I’m sure. But have you figured out how to practically apply this promise to your own life?

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. 

The Apostle John (1 John 4:18 NASB)

God is love (1 John 4:8, 16). He casts out fear. Have you allowed God to cast out your fear?

I spent many years as a non-believer and as a believer worrying. For those of you who know my story, you know that a great deal of my worrying has been about my siblings’ schizophrenia and its effect on their lives, my parents’ lives, and my own.

Almost twenty years ago, I found and sought refuge in these verses:

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Jesus (Matthew 6:33-34 NASB)

“Seek first His kingdom”—at first, I didn’t know what that meant. I read this Bible verse every night and every other verse I could find about fear.

Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

The Apostle Peter (1 Peter 5:7 NIV)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

The Apostle Paul (Philippians 4:6-7 NIV)

The more I read these verses, the more calm I was. Then I finally understood that to “seek first His kingdom” was to first seek God. So then I did more Bible reading and prayer.

But I was not consistent. And even though I learned that lesson while worried about my brother’s safety (because he was homeless at the time), I would not apply that same lesson to other situations, like moving across the country from the Midwest to The South or finding the right schooling for my children.

It wasn’t until just two years ago when once again I had the challenge of my brother’s mental illness that I figured out how to be calm in all circumstances. Now when I’m facing the unknown, the uncertain, I praise God from Whom all blessings flow!

Worshiping through Every Battle

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow!
Praise Him all creatures here below!
Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts!
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!
Amen

(You can read my whole story in the book ReTested: The Story of a Post-Abortive Woman Called to Change the Conversation.)

I speak and write about abortion. Everyone has an emotional reaction to abortion. Not everyone responds favorably to what I have to say.

I am attacked spiritually all the time because clearly satan doesn’t like what I have to say. I’m pretty sure that someone who disagrees with me messed with my car tires.

My response? To praise God. Why? Because when I focus on Him and His love for me, my fear doesn’t have a chance to take root.

But I do not fear. I refuse to fear. I refuse to agree with fear. Because satan loves it when we fear, and God’s agape love casts out all fear.

I have made a choice—a choice not to fear.

Fear and Abortion

Women with crisis pregnancies experience fear. Their fears are not unlike the fears concerning the pandemic.

  • Fear of morning sickness or more serious pregnancy complications
  • Fear of the pain and potential complications of giving birth
  • Fear of the hospital
  • Fear of raising a child with disabilities
  • Fear of not having family there to help in her time of need
  • Fear of the baby daddy not supporting her (emotionally or financially)
  • Fear of being tethered to the baby daddy for the rest of her life
  • Fear of judgment and being ostracized
  • Fear of losing her job or fear because she already lost her job, and she’s not sure how she’s going to pay bills
  • Fear of being passed over for promotion

Often, the pro-life movement stands in anger. Yes, we should be angry about the slaughter of pre-born babies. It’s murder. It’s a holocaust.

But let us not forget that God loves these women just as much as He loves their babies. Let us be sure that we show God’s agape loves to the women (and men) who are making choices.

Here are four things you can do right now:

  • Create a new contact in your phone for your local pregnancy resource center so that you can refer women and men. Many offer pregnancy and STI/STD testing, parenting resources, and post-abortion healing. Find out what they offer. Take a tour once your state opens up.
    In the U.S., search Care Net for the center near you.
    Internationally, search Heartbeat International for the center near you.
  • Donate your time, talent, or treasure to your pregnancy resource center. Every dollar counts. If all you have is $20, then give $20. If you have 2 hours to collect diapers, then spend 2 hours. If you have time to share their social media posts, do it. If you have time to create social media posts, contact them!
  • Post on social media or in whatever groups you belong, saying something like this: “If you or someone you know has fear about pregnancy, please reach out to me privately so that I can help you find the support you need.” When they do contact you privately, refer them to your local pregnancy resource center, which you already have saved in your contacts.
  • Share this blog post with other pro-life Christians, especially those who are fearful or those who are angry about abortion.

Lord, bless every reader with the knowledge and acceptance of Your agape love, which casts out all fear. Guide them into believing Your love rather than agreeing with fear. Lead them from the temptation to give power to the evil one. May they glorify You in all things.

Worship to End Abortion: 40 Daily Prayers is a prayer booklet that leads you to pray and worship for the end of abortion. Later this year, I will release the full book. It’ll make a great study that you can do on your own or with a group. Stay tuned!

In Christ,

Cheryl

What the Pandemic Can Teach Us about Abortion

Dear Christian Sisters & Brothers,

How did you feel when we first received “shelter in place” orders? Fearful of getting sick? Afraid you would lose your job?

Fear

Welcome to the world of fear. Very real fear.

Fear in the Pandemic

  • Who will be able to help you if you were to get sick?
  • How will you get critical supplies, like toilet paper, tissues, and paper towels?
  • What happens if your car breaks down, and you aren’t able to get to the store?
  • If you lose your job, how are you going to pay for your home? for whatever groceries you can find?
  • Are you separated from those you love? parents? grandparents? children?
  • Or are you in an abusive relationship and now stuck at home with this person?
  • Who are your true friends and relatives who will see you through this challenging time?

Fear in Crisis Pregnancy

Welcome to the world of crisis pregnancy. A world full of very real fear.

All that fear and anxiety you and others have had about the pandemic are very much like what women feel when they are facing single parenthood or having a child with special needs.

  • Who will be willing to help them?
  • Will they have the money needed to buy diapers, food, and clothes?
  • Will they be able to work with morning sickness or extra weight on their feet?
  • Will they lose their job or their promotion?
  • Are they in an abusive relationship and now feel even more stuck with this guy?
  • Who are their true friends and relatives who will see them through this challenging time?

Fear of Separation

Some of you may say, “she should put her child up for adoption,” but women intuitively know how hard it will be to separate from their babies. Many mistakenly think it’ll be emotionally easier to abort than to put their babies up for adoption.

Fear of Being Alone

And, frankly, more than anything, they don’t want to feel alone. They feel isolated, cut off from society. They feel like others shy away from them like they are contagious.

Your focus is on the baby rather than on them, and they know it.

Profiteering

Profiteering in the Pandemic

Two Tennessee brothers, foreseeing the demand for hand sanitizer, drove across Tennessee and Kentucky buying up all the hand sanitizer they could find. Why? So that they could resell it at higher prices because of the COVID19-created high demand.

Until ebay and Amazon refused to partner with them and the Attorney General shut them down, they intended to profiteer from people’s fears.

Profiteering in Crisis Pregnancy

Planned Parenthood, in 1969, had no plans to get into the abortion business. NARAL invited them to partner in campaigning for the legalization of abortion, but Planned Parenthood said no. Then in 1970, New York legalized abortion and women flooded into New York because the free-love movement resulted in crisis pregnancies and because women did not have equal rights to work or the right to demand child support. (See History of Abortion on my website.)

Planned Parenthood saw the money and partnered with NARAL and then got into the abortion business. Planned Parenthood profiteers from people’s fears.

Which companies partner with them? So, so many. And, of course, the government doesn’t shut them down, but at least the federal government—which is in debt—is reducing its financial support of this non-profit that plans to spend $45 million to back pro-Roe candidates in the 2020 elections.

Social Distancing

But would abortion really even be an issue if people were social distancing?

You can’t kiss with a mask on.

Agape Love vs Fear

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear. (1 John 4:18a NASB)

Agape love casts out fear.

Agape love is different than making love. Making love is eros love—you know, the Greek word that is the basis of our word erotica.

But agape love is different than eros love. Agape love is the desire to do good to others.

God is agape love. (1 John 4:8, 16)

Love Is Patient. Love Is Kind.

  • God is patient.
  • God is kind.
  • God does not envy.
  • God does not brag.
  • God is not arrogant.
  • God does not behave rudely.
  • God is not self-seeking.
  • God is not easily angered.
  • God keeps no record of wrongs.
  • God does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth.
  • God bears all things.
  • God trusts.
  • God always hopes.
  • God always perseveres.
  • God never fails.

Let’s be like God.

I Am Patient. I am Kind.

Lord,

You are love. Thank You for loving me through all things and all circumstances. Fill my heart with Your love, which casts out all fear. Give me peace in the pandemic.

Make me the hands and feet of Your love here on earth—on earth as it is in heaven.

Lord, introduce me to the crisis pregnancy center near my home and near my work so that I know where to find help for women and men in crisis.

Introduce me to organizations like Embrace Grace, which provides support to women through local churches so that they are not alone.

Show me how you want me to use my time, talent, or treasure to support women and men in crisis.

Make me brave enough to share on social media my willingness to listen, mentor, and support women and men in crisis.

Fill women and men in crisis with Your love, which casts out all fear. Give them peace in their pregnancies. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen!

In Christ,

Cheryl

Reflections on the March for Life

Dear Christian Sisters,

Friday was the 45th March for Life, a political march that started on the first anniversary of Roe v Wade.

This was my first march. It was my Women’s March. I marched for women.

A sign at the rally that says,

I don’t like politics, so I resisted going. But as I was telling someone that I would miss the march because I had a commitment, I had a sinking feeling like I had to be there. So, I made arrangements to go.

Honestly, the intended audience for my sign was the other marchers. My message is for Christians.

I got a lot of looks, like I was making people think. Yay! That was exactly what I wanted.

My

One woman asked me if I bought my t-shirt at the march or had it made. I had it made! So I gave her my card, saying, “I’m trying to get people to understand that abortion is a Great Commission issue” (see my blog post “Abortion & the Great Commission”).

Attending the Evangelicals for Life Conference

On Thursday, I went to the Evangelicals for Life conference. That evening, I went to the March for Life worship event. On Friday, I went to the March for Life rally and then walked in the march.

My friend Jennifer and I. We marched together for women of all colors.
Jennifer and I “marched” for life in Uganda over New Year’s and then we Marched for Life of women of all colors in Washington, DC.

What I really wanted to do was to listen. I wanted to listen to the conversation. I wanted to hear what people were saying. I wanted to hear whether I agree with what was said or whether speakers were harping on the message that the pro-choice movement hears–it’s all about the baby.

I was encouraged! At the Evangelicals for Life conference, I was most encouraged by Russell Moore’s presentation, which opened the conference. I didn’t know Russell Moore before the conference.

Honestly, I stayed away from the abortion conversation on purpose until a year ago when the Holy Spirit convicted me to speak loudly and raise my voice like a trumpet (Isaiah 58:1).

Russell Moore is the President of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission. I loved his message. He gave me hope that more and more Christians would understand that the abortion issue is a Great Commission issue. We don’t want people to just stop aborting babies. We want them also to accept the love of Christ.

You should listen to Russell Moore’s message. It’s powerful.

Attending the Worship Night

During the day, I worshipped and heard from Evangelicals. That evening, worship was led by Pentecostals. I am not Pentecostal, but honestly I love how they pray! Their prayers are so much more bold than what I hear in my Evangelical church.

Abby Johnson and her friends, all former abortion workers. Praise God for their redemption in Christ!

Abby Johnson, a Baptist turned Catholic, spoke. She is a former Planned Parenthood clinic director. She started a ministry called And Then There Were None. Her mission is to speak truth about Planned Parenthood while simultaneously helping workers in the abortion industry get out and get into new jobs.

What a life-giving ministry!

You should follow Abby Johnson on all her social media outlets.

The March for Life, My Women’s March

On Friday, I had the privilege and God-arranged opportunity to ride into Washington, DC and march with employees and volunteers of Mosaic Virginia, a crisis pregnancy center.

Mosaic-Virginia.org

These women are so committed to saving other women from the heartbreak of abortion. Not only that, but Mosaic has purposely begun counseling men in the last few years.

It’s not just about the women. Men, the fathers of the babies, are the most influential person in the abortion decision, according to Cindy Hopkins of CareNet.

Mosaic-Virginia.org

These women of Mosaic are real. They are practical. They totally understand that abortion is as much about the women and men as it is about the baby.

God is grieved not just for the loss of babies, which are truly child sacrifices (), but for the women–and the men–who are lost for eternity until they seek the loving forgiveness of Christ. Healing is available to all who seek Him. This I know.

Caitlin was one of the women in the car. She is a singer who has a heart for the pro-life movement. What a lovely woman of God. Listen to her pro-life message given through music.

At the rally, I heard mostly messages that conveyed Christ’s love for women.

And, unfortunately, that message has not been conveyed in the news. The theme for the 2018 March for Life was #LoveSavesLives. Not just the love of babies, but the love of the women and men who created the babies.

Conceived through Rape

I saw people marching for children conceived through rape!

God doesn’t make mistakes. The last pain that I felt for my own abortion was all about God. I realized that I was mad at God for letting me get pregnant.

I mean really. We like to explain pregnancy through science. But as believers in Christ, we know that God is in control.

God decides which eggs get fertilized.

God decides which babies make it without miscarriage.

God decides which babies make it through physical and intellectual and developmental disabilities.

God decides.

I was mad at God.

No, I wasn’t raped. But I was still mad at God for letting me get pregnant. I had to confess that sin. And once I did, I was able to write again, to move forward, to continue in the task that God had given me to speak loudly and not hold back (Isaiah 58:1).

March for Life Rally

I liked most of the message at the March for Life Rally. It was clear to me which speakers “got it” that abortion is not just about babies but also about men and women.

But there were still some who were solely focused on the baby. That made me sad.

But it also confirmed the reason the Lord wants me to speak loudly and not hold back (Isaiah 58:1).

God is not just grieved over the babies–and He is grieved over lost babies!

But God is also grieved over the women who are spiritually lost.

God is also grieved by the men not standing up to be the men God has called them to be.

The March for Life

Marchers at the March for Life with the Washington Monument in the background

The March for Life was about showing our legislators that pro-life legislation is still important. We have not given up on reversing Roe v Wade. The numbers of people marching are what was important. And the weather was in our favor.

I was not able to find good estimates on the numbers other than “fewer than 500,000.” Take a look for yourself:

A video of the March for Life as we went up the hill to the Supreme Court.

In Christ,

Cheryl