I ordered my burger without a bun. I did not feel good about this. I think to compensate I ordered one of the biggest burgers from Broad St. Burger’s menu. I sat tightly packed around a table with other pastors from Statesville. In the middle of our group was a passionate man named Andre Gonzalez. He spoke with a fervor usually reserved for pulpits or a locker room before the big game. And as he spoke, I believe God was giving direction for Faith Church Statesville.
In January news broke about the state of New York now allowing late term abortions. Maybe like me, you felt like someone punched you in the gut. Maybe like me, you wanted do something because this is unconscionable. Maybe like me, you did not even know where to begin. As I sat and listened, Andre showed a place where I could begin.
Andre told us how Love Life Charlotte began with a vision to rally the church to get serious about praying against the evil of abortion. He told me about churches that adopt a week each year to fast and pray for life. Churches from all over North Carolina gather to pray together over 40 weeks during the year. My friend Tim Brower, who pastors the Oaks Church, had led his church on this prayer walk and shared a little bit on the impact the walk had on him and members of his church. (You can see more about Love Life's impact here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zA9A6Z0YAYI)
I never felt like I was getting a sales pitch, but nevertheless I was sold.
The best thing about Love Life’s prayer walks is that I do not have to preach to anyone. I do not hold a sign or yell at people from a sidewalk. I do not have to know all the apologetics against abortion. I simply have to care. I have to care that children are being killed in the womb. I have to be willing to put aside all the things that separate different denominations and churches and join together with the universal Church. And then the biggest step:
I have to join in where I can.
So, as I sat there cutting my burger with a knife and fork, I got the deep sense that God wanted Faith Church Statesville to be engaged in our outreach in this area. Now, you may rightfully ask “Why Charlotte? Why go there?” The simple answer is that if a woman in Statesville wants to get an abortion, they are pointed to the Charlotte facility (I refuse to call it a clinic, clinics help). There are people in our community who need to know there is another way and that there is grace to be found in Christ. As a church for the community, we can do our part. We can do the thing that any Christian can do. We can boldly approach the throne of grace, a way paved by Jesus, and our pleas will be listened to.
I pray that this will spark passion in some people of Faith to get further involved in the pro-life movement. It can be through mentorship, adoption, or tenderly caring for those who have had abortions by pointing them to the grace of God found in Jesus. We have an outstanding Pregnancy Resource Center here in Statesville that can plug you in to some amazing ministry opportunities.
As a church both local and universal, we need to begin with one step. Let’s pray.
Details on Faith Church Statesville’s adopted week of March 10-16:
March 10: One "Love Life" service at 10am. I will preach on the sanctity of life and Love Life Charlotte will give a presentation. You can sign up to be a part of the prayer walk and fasting time during the week.
March 13: Wednesday is a day of praying and fasting. You will be equipped in ways to pray and fast during the day.
March 16: A bus leaves from Faith Church and goes to Charlotte to have a time of worship and a prayer walk (about a 1/4 mile of walking) in the shadow of the largest abortion facility in the Southeast.
If you are reading this and Faith Church Statesville is not your home church, but you want to join us on the prayer walk, please email Charles@connect2faith.church. This is not a way to to recruit you to our church, it is simply a way to unite as the universal Church under the banner of prayer and justice.