I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Revelation 21:1-3 ESV
Most loving Lord Jesus, your loud voice and tear wiping hand, together, give us the courage and compassion as we need to live as faithful advocates for human life. How we long for the day when “death shall be no more”—death in all of its expressions. Today we are especially thinking about the death of unborn children.
All of your promises are “trustworthy and true,” so we will neither despair nor retreat in the face of unconscionable evil and overwhelming need. Jesus, give us gospel courage to rise and contend against the dark oxymoron called “legal abortion.” Those two words simply do not belong together. Because you are making “all things new,” with undaunted hope we will fight the good fight of faith for children who are still being knit together in their mother’s womb.
There is a Day coming when abortion will be no more. In light of that Day, give us wisdom. Give us strength. Give us fire. Give us perseverance. Give us the sufficient grace we need to advocate for unborn children in this day—in our communities and among the nations of the world.
We also cry out for gospel compassion. Jesus, show us how to love and care for women and men whose stories are marked by abortion—either as victims or agents. Only the gospel is sufficient for the guilt. Only the gospel can bring healing. Only the gospel can transform an agent of darkness into a warrior for justice and mercy.
Jesus, we don’t just long for the Day of no more abortions. We also long for the Day of no more miscarriages. Sin and death have violated every domain of shalom, including the realm of birthing. Our hearts break for those families who would love a child to your glory, but must endure the pain of giving up their children before birth. Show us how to love and serve them well. Extend your tear-wiping hand through us.
How long, Jesus, before the last abortion and the last miscarriage? How long, O Lord? Until that Day, we also ask for courage and compassion to adopt the millions of orphaned children who have safely made it into this world. May our zeal against abortion be matched by our zeal for adoption. Surely there is room in our hearts and homes for these precious image bearers of yours. Surely the gospel is big enough for this calling too. So very Amen, we pray, in your holy and loving name.
~ A prayer by Scotty Smith, 1/23/2011