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Green Pastures and Still Waters

We’ll be having our annual reminder of the Sanctity of Human Life this coming Sunday.  Those of us who are pro-life often talk about the babies whose lives have been taken and the tragedy of their death.  That message should be proclaimed because abortion is an assault on the image of God!  But, what about the women?  What about the loss they have experienced?  What about the regret?  What about the shame that accompanies the aftermath of their decision?  Some women have been publicly outspoken that they have no more shame or regret than they would for having their appendix removed.  I am sure there are some of those women that are telling the truth but they are not representative of all women.  I have heard and read testimonies of many women that wish they could reverse their decisions.  (Surrendering the Secret is a wonderful Bible Study for post-abortive women.)  And, to the woman who comes to Jesus, may she hear…”Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more…”  The gospel must be as loudly proclaimed as the evils of abortion.  Reardon wrote, “The greatest tragedy of abortion is that it separates women from God.  The despair which drives women to abortion is also used by the enemy to make them doubt God’s mercy.”  Please pray that we will be more enthusiastic about the life offered to sinners through Jesus than we are about highlighting the evils of our society.

There are many assaults on the inner life.  We may not be attacked by knife-wielding maniacs or be running from people shooting bullets but there is surely an assault on our souls.  The enemy is a thief and delights to rob us of life.  He steals, kills and destroys and has had plenty of practice in his crafty craft.  One of the effects of the fall (original sin), is the struggle with “negative attribution.”  Even when people mean well, we can, at times, attribute their actions to evil.  What they meant for good, we see as malice.  There may be people who think ill of us but somedays it feels like it is everyone.  The result is, we start to think ill of them.  All of this is very destructive to the inner life.  When we are attacked from without and from within, the result can be crushing to our souls.  If we’re not treating this malady in ways that are good and right, we can become self-destructive and lose heart.  To lose heart is to give up; to give in, to give over to negativity and despair.  Some will medicate.  Some will seek amusement and entertainment.  Some will try something new and/or novel that seems “right to a man.”  Paul certainly knew what it was to be under attack outside and inside.  He knew what it was to struggle.  Yet, twice in the passage we are considering on Sunday, he wrote, “We do not lose heart.”  I want to know how he kept on going in spite of the assaults on his inner life.   Do you?  See you Sunday, if the Lord wills smiley.