Marching doesn’t save babies. You do.

We’re back from the March for Life and different blog posts have been going through my mind for the last day. I could talk about . . .

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  • how inspiring it was to leave campus with a few hundred people who were PUMPED about being pro-life
  • how discouraging it is that far less than a quarter of those people will stay engaged in pro-life activities this semester
  • the awesomeness of ecumenism at the March
  • blatant misrepresentation of the March by the media
  • the need to be careful to not make life an issue only for religious people
  • how so many people check “pro-life” off their to-do list after marching but don’t do anything else
  • the pro-“choice” people who tried to stop the March and refused to comply with the police
  • the civil right movement parallels
  • politicians who are not practicing what they preach
  • the new brand of feminism making waves in pro-life circles
  • the ridiculous fact that people can’t agree a 20 week abortion ban makes sense

There’s so, so much to be said. I’ve been reading, looking at all the pictures and soaking it all in – trying to figure out what I want to say. And obviously from the list, you can see there are plenty of thoughts that could be developed more. But so much of them are negative. So much of my thoughts after the March are disappointing.

Because I know the march is only one day.

Marching is one day – one battle. But our victory over the culture of death depends on winning the overall war, not just a single battle each year.

Being in a crowd of hundreds of thousands of people reminds me that I am not alone in my beliefs. It also reminds me that when it does feel lonely and things get frustrating, I have to persevere. I cannot let this war happen in our world without putting on some armor and doing my part. Lives depend on it.

God has called each of us in our own way to be part of challenging the powers that be who tell us abortion and other attacks on human life are okay. We are not called to chill on our iPads or spend hours on Facebook. We are freaking meant to

CHANGE

THE

WORLD.

Maybe it’s just smiling at a stranger today, volunteering somewhere each month, or sending a note home to your momma. Maybe it’s getting back to church. Or standing up for the truth in everyday conversations. Or taking time to educate yourself. Or making a plan for how to integrate your pro-life beliefs into your job. Or just striving to be really, really good at whatever you’ve been given talent in.

Whatever it is, just do it.

Please don’t wait until next year’s march. Because guess what? If we all just rolled up our sleeves, did the dirty work, and stopped making excuses it would be amazing.

During a recent homily, a priest talked about how we try to fit God into our daily schedules. But in reality, true peace only comes when we abandon ourselves to His will. We have to ask and pursue what He made us for, because nothing else will quench our thirst.

Are you with me? Yes, it makes me slightly squeamish too. That’s part of why “abandon” is my theme of the year. I need the challenge. I need to work on asking God to use me to accomplish his plan for the world, not trying to figure out how I can fix ALL the things.

I can’t. You can’t.

This frustrates me to no end because being pro-life is simple. Every life is a gift. That’s it. That people can not or refuse to recognize that makes me sad for those who have not seen the beauty of it. Seeing life as a beautiful gift changes how I live, and knowing people have not encountered this beauty makes me want to cry. There are people making traumatic choices because they are broken and lost and hurt and we need to help them.

Please will you try to not forget about this?

Don’t forget the united power of hundreds of thousands of people.

Don’t forget that people are dying.

Don’t forget that people who don’t know better depend on us to give them the new message.

Our world is crying for lack of love and hope – the two most basic things the pro-life movement is all about. The good news is that evil has been conquered by love. Love always wins. And each of us is given the tools to be part of history by simply standing up.

So stand up.

Know what you believe.

Talk about it.

Fight for it.

Walk the walk.

Because simply moving our feet doesn’t save babies. But we can. We can touch hearts. We can be good friends to our brothers and sisters in a broken world. We can show people the beauty of life through our witness. God can use any of us to do great things. We can join together and tell our society we’ve had enough of its lies. We can give people hope. We can love people we come in contact with.

A single march isn’t going to change the world. But you can do something. You are capable of being a witness to the beauty of life. Your first step – our first steps – are just the beginning of the end of death.

So let’s start today.

To Life,

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What the pro-life movement has taught me

My first memorable contact with the pro-life movement was going to some sort of rally around 9 years old. It was at our state capital and all I can really remember are the graphic pictures.

Fast forward to 2011 when I went to the Walk for Life West Coast and BAM. That fall I started working for Live Action, and the rest, you could say, is history. At first, learning about the injustice of abortion made me incredulous and sad. How could people think it’s okay? Who would do such a thing? So I did things like self-righteously post something on Planned Parenthood’s Facebook page. And then I would argue with the people who did things like call me a lesbian nun (yes, that was a real comment – my favorite insult!)

Now, four years later, I don’t think about it the same way. So here’s what I’ve learned.

what being pro life has taught me

1. Being pro-life isn’t all about babies.

Statistically speaking, abortion has wiped out more lives than any other single tragic event/disease/etc in human history. That’s a pretty big deal. But the fact is that babies aren’t given life if their moms don’t choose to give it to them. So you have to reach the woman first. You have to genuinely love her, because let’s be real:

knowVScare

So please avoid fetus tunnel vision at all costs.

2. Sometimes being pro-life makes life hard

When couples receive the news their baby will most likely not live long after birth, many would like to take the “easy” route by having an abortion and “trying again”. But couples like Trevor and Hayley show us that making a hard choice that respects the life of people like their daughter Veyda may be hard, but it is always worth it.

 

3. Working in the pro-life movement is inherently sacrificial

Want to stand out in bone-chilling cold praying for people you’ve never met? Is having people remove themselves from your life a thrilling possibility? Does being yelled and cussed at sound like your cup of tea? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you just might be called to get involved in pro-life work!

On a more serious note, making your mission to defend other people makes a lot of people grow in humility and love for others. Why? Because we’re not the ones being aborted. The majority of people who do pro-life work do it for other people. Some people have personal stories that drove them to do pro-life work, but other people like me not so much. I do it because I care about people. And you know what I’ve found? That saying “You find yourself by losing yourself in service to others” is spot on. If more people got involved in pro-life work we would lose a lot of the selfishness in the world.

 

4. We don’t agree on everything, but we can all agree on one thing

LGBT pro-life group? Secular pro-life group? Great. We agree about life. That’s what we’re here for. If you want to grab some coffee and chat other issues, great. But when we do pro-life work, we’ve got to be able to work together toward a common goal without letting our differences divide us.

 

5. Being pro-life means ALL life at ALL stages

Consistency is key, or being pro-life doesn’t make sense. We have to always be pro-life, even when it comes to issues that don’t involve smiling babies. Take, for example: euthanasia, death penalty, the porn industry, and human trafficking. Let’s talk about the over-sexualization of people in the media too. There are so many issues dealing with human dignity that we have to be careful to not limit the pro-life movement by putting it in a tiny box labeled “abortion”. It’s so much more.

 

6. Love conquers all

Ultimately, we do what we do because we are called to love our brothers and sisters. We see a hurt world suffering at the hands of evil. But we have hope because love is stronger than death. Love has already conquered evil on the cross, and it’s our job now to show we the world that “We are the Easter people and hallelujah is our song”.

 

Like many things in life, being active in the pro-life movement is not easy. But it’s worth it. It has challenged me, pushed me beyond my comfort zone, and givens me so many reasons to have hope for our world. It is raising up a generation of soldiers for truth.

It’s been 4 years now doing this crazy stuff, and I look forward to the many years to come. As I attempt to use my life to show the world the beauty and dignity of every human person, may we work together tirelessly in this movement. After all, when people look back on history and how we dealt with threats to the dignity of life, what side do you want to say you were on? Did you stand by the sidelines and watch? Or did you do something?

It’s up to you.

To Life,

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It’s the little things . . .

It’s a wonderful thing to be pro-life. It’s better to talk with people about it and be educated. Even better? Live your life in a way where it’s clear what your priorities are. Be pro-life in every fiber of your being in the way you love and show compassion.

Which category do you fall under?

Sometimes I get frustrated because so many people fall under the first category – maybe the second.

As a student at a Catholic college, it’s nice that the majority of people here see the core of this issue in the same way as me. We know life is important, and yadda yadda yadda. We’re heard it all. Yay babies.

That’s great, but the fact is that our lives show what our priorities are. It’s disheartening to me to see so many people go on the March for Life, pose for cute pro-life pictures, but then never join us for other events. Never come outside clinics. Never learn to sidewalk counsel. Never come to an abortion dialogue workshop. Never respond to emails about getting involved. Never experience a life-changing moment where your witness touched someone.

It makes me sad sometimes because I have experienced what you’re missing out on.

This movement is a movement of love, and being part of it radically changed my life. I cannot begin to comprehend how much time I have devoted to this cause, and honestly there’s no way it’s going to stop. This is what I do and it’s part of who I am. But could you join me sometimes?

Show us what you believe in the little moments of everyday – don’t just post about it. Don’t just do the cute stuff, because that’s too easy. Join me in the behind the scenes work that no one sees, because in my experience, that’s where your true character shows. Let your feet speak for you sometimes. Let your life show others what you believe in. It’s easy to hold signs and march. Believe me, because I’ve done it. And it’s great to march and hold signs and post things. But it’s not enough. Being pro-life is about being pro-ALL-life.

So show me.

Join me.

I dare you.

f8f5e-237161_1257739195062-8res_284_320Come pray with us. Did you know 40 Days for Life begins on today? Join us for abortion clinic trips. Who needs sleep anyway? Come to our meetings. Join us for our ice cream social. Contribute your talents. None of us can do everything, but we can all do something. And together our little actions add up to a movement bigger than ourselves.

Not everyone is going to jump completely into this movement, but we’re all called to be part of it somehow. Maybe you could design graphics, bake for us, write for us, or be a prayer warrior. As a student now, you have time to do more than you will at any other point of time. So stop procrastinating and join us. Participate in 40 Days for Life. Come to senior center trips. Whatever it is, show me. Dare to do something great, because good just isn’t enough.

We were made for greatness. Now let’s get down to business.

To Life,

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Changing my approach

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted an opinion piece for Live Action News, or much of anything of the same genre over here. It’s not because my views have changed. No, I still am serving as president of Ravens Respect Life and had an internship with a life affirming medical pregnancy center this summer.

But it’s true that my view has evolved to some degree.

Looking back on my articles, I’ve written about how some people are kind of crazy, Planned Parenthood doesn’t follow the rules, Obama problems, doing the pro-life thing wrong, and medical standard being all sorts of crazy. While it’s good to be informed, and expose lies while holding the truth high as a torch for all to see, it is not good to do this at the expense of other people.

I don’t know that my writing has ever hurt anyone. It’s something I posted about constantly in the past – and I did notice quite a few people “de-friending” me. Was it because of my beliefs? With the sensitive subject matter, I wouldn’t be surprised. And while I still don’t shy away from confrontation and would be happy to talk about these issue with you anytime, the days of Facebook debates are over. They have been for a while, actually.

If you’ve ever participated in debates (because let’s face it, they’re not usually just a “discussion”) online about sensitive life issues, you know that rush of OWNING the conversation. You know when something is just so dumb, you have the perfect comeback that will have everyone and their mother rushing to find sunglasses because the light o’ truth is just that bright.

Um, wrong. Wrong answer. Please don’t do that.

I have. And I loved it. But it is no longer my approach.

Thinking about this more, I realize that there is no place for inflammatory language in this movement. I’m not a complete hippie, but isn’t love what this is all about? We love women so much that we have to show them that we deserve better than abortion and contraception. We love guys so much that we tell them to man up and take care of us women and stop abandoning their children. We love children so much that we will fight for their lives. We love abortion clinic workers so much that we want to expose the truth of their industry, and lead them to a better life.

But did you ever love someone so much that you shut up about your agenda for a second?

Think about it.

You don’t prove much by holding a sign and posting things on social media about “the abortion holocaust”. Whoohoo. You have hands to hold a sign, and you can copy and past links. Yay you! Well, not really. Did you talk with your family member who lost a baby to miscarriage? Did you offer sincere condolences when a loved one of a friend died? Are you praying for people who hate you? Did you give that homeless person a snack? Do you try to love all the people in your life, even if they disagree with you?

Newsflash: if we can’t love people without saying “But abortion!” “But you use contraception!” then we’re doing love wrong.

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Like Mother Teresa said:

“Each one of them is Jesus in disguise.”

Yup. Even people I disagree with. Even people who are mean. Because you know? I probably have been too. So I’m starting to approach this differently, and I’m starting now. I do want to live my life being that light – the person everyone knows will stand up for the truth. That’s important. I also want to be a person who others know will take you as you are and treat you with love and respect.

So I promise to not shove my burning torch of truth in your face, honestly.

Something Maya Angelou said seems appropriate here:

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

I want you to know in the fiber of your being, no matter who you are, no matter what you’ve done, no matter what you believe, that I believe in you. I believe you are capable of incredible things, and I believe you were made for greatness. My sincere hope is to communicate this better in the way I write.

I don’t want to write about how people are bad anymore. I want to inspire you. I want to use my life to show you how epic our calling to fearlessly pursue a higher purpose is.

This is what I’m doing today to start that. Will you join me?

To Life,

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World Down Syndrome Day 2014

Happy World Down Syndrome Day 🙂

Today is the day we celebrate people who are just like you and me, except that they have 3 of their #21 chromosomes instead of 2, which gives them down syndrome (3/21, get it?!). This day always makes me think of my brother Robert.

What I always hear from people who have family members who are rocking a 3rd 21st chromosome is that being part of simply loving them brings so much joy to their lives. For some reason God gave most people with down syndrome (as far as I’ve seen and heard) the ability to love others unconditionally, being totally unaware or accepting of their flaws.The rest of us? We probably have to work harder at it. It’s so beautiful to see families loving and embracing their children with down syndrome because it turns out that having down syndrome isn’t the end of the world. As you’ll see in these videos, it is a blessing to so many people.

IDSC’s 2014 Video

Dear Future Mom [of a baby with DS]

IDSC’s 2013 Video

IDSC’s 2012 Video

In America over 90% of parents who are told their unborn child has down syndrome choose abortion. Remember to always thank parents for choosing LIFE, even when it isn’t 100% what you were expecting. After all, none of our lives are really “normal” and you never know what amazing things a person – down syndrome or not – is going to with the gift of their life.

Honored.

Since beginning pro-life work, I have been amazed at the opportunities sent my way. Seriously. I have no way to describe the ways God has given me to exercise the gifts and talents he’s blessed me with.

After a sidewalk counseling training session at Benedictine College
After a sidewalk counseling training session at BC

If no one in my family supported my work, I’d still do it because I believe it’s right. If my friends teased me because of it (okay, sometimes they think it’s a little much 😉 ) I would still continue it because it’s right. If my college tried to silence my voice, I would still do pro-life work because it’s right. And I feel called to it. But the support I have has not threatened my work. It’s nearly blown my mind.

Sometimes I feel completely unworthy of the amazing people and opportunities I have been (and continue to be) given. Really, God? Who am I to be doing all this? I’m not anyone special. But then I remember that God doesn’t call the equipped. He equips the called. And I continue this work because I feel called to it. It’s what I’m good at and passionate about.

March for Life 2014

This summer I am honored to have the opportunity to partner with RealOptions in a pro-life internship where I will be working with church and community leaders to build partnerships and to create awareness for the services of RealOptions: professional medical services, practical support for women and men facing unplanned pregnancies, prevention education for students, and post-abortion services. They are a fabulous life-affirming alternative to abortion, and I’m excited to work with them.

A wonderful family friend offered to help me set up a fundraising campaign to make this unpaid internship possible and to replace lost income.

If you’re able, I would be honored to have you join my work through your support. And if you’re not able to contribute personally, it would mean a great deal to me if you could share this campaign. You can do so by sharing this post, or by going to the campaign link and sharing from there on all forms of social media. Here’s the promotional video I made:

In just the past couple hours of this campaign being “live”, the support has been incredible. It moves me to see so many people supportive of my work. I’m almost in tears at this point because I can hardly believe the response. I don’t even know what to say except “thank you”. It’s so encouraging to see so many people supporting work that can be so hard sometimes.

Though I have to say, there are at least 10 joyful moments for every difficult one in this movement.

Laura with Abby Johnson, a pro-life inspiration, at the March for Life 2014
Meeting Abby Johnson at the March for Life 2014

Like early last Saturday when I had a beautiful conversation freezing outside an abortion clinic with a couple who was there for an abortion. They were hurting so much, and there were anti-abortion (not pro-life) people yelling at them. They told the boyfriend what a sinner he was and so on. The girlfriend came out crying and you could just see the pain. They were talking in the car for a while, and I smiled at them and waved.

They drove over and we talked right there in the driveway. They were so hurt by the people that were yelling, and I assured them that I believed in them and saw the greatness in them. They so appreciated that, and I gave them contact information for local free clinics to help them out. She told me was was 3 months along and I got excited and showed them the 12 week fetal model I carry in my pocket there. They were fascinated by it. No one ever told them about their baby. But I didn’t dwell on that. I listened to them express their concerns, and I did my best to let them know we cared about them. They ended up driving away without making a final decision, and I pray they know that people out there care.

That moment was so inspiring for me. Their eyes just said everything. They could see that we aren’t all haters out there to condemn. In what little time I had with them, I hope they know they are loved.

It’s when we take the time to love people that amazing things happen. I fail at it constantly, of course. We all do. But I cannot even put into words how incredible it is to be part of something so beautiful and human. That’s the heart of it, and the heart of all my pro-life work. It’s all about loving the person.

Your support means so much to me. Know that through it, you’re helping me to help make the world a better place. Stay tuned for updates on my work and how you can get involved!

Please visit this link to support my work and to share the campaign. Thank you!

Contact me or comment below with any questions.

 

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 47

— 1 —

We had a big snow dump earlier this week, which called for snow angels! Oh, and TWO snow days in a row. That was glorious. If it weren’t for dangerous roads and falling on icy paths, I would enjoy living in a snowy area.

— 2 —

Videos of the Week

Touching: Zion Blick’s treasured little life

Funny: combo of “Bet on it” and “Let it go”

— 3 —

Last night we brought out a trainer for sidewalk counseling, and the event went really well. We have over a dozen people interested. Excited is not the right word to use (because who actually wants to be part of such difficult situations?) but I am looking forward to seeing the impact outside our local clinic. Tomorrow morning is our first trip! I know talking to people will get easier with experience, but I’m a little nervous about dealing with the people who yell. Read more about them here, and pray for us!

— 4 —

With starting sidewalk counseling, I’ve been trying to figure out how to sleep on Friday nights. Since coming to college I’ve discovered that I am a pretty light sleeper – which doesn’t work too well on nights when everyone else is staying up late. I can’t tell them to be silent (and not turn lights on later to get ready for bed) BUT I know it’s not safe to drive running on only a few hours of sleep on a regular basis. So I’m kind of stuck.

I’ve been thinking about various noise cancelling sort of things, but I don’t really know what’s out there. Any ideas? Mr. Google wasn’t very helpful because it only brought up $300+ headphones. Or earmuffs. Or noise machines. Anyone have experience that could enlighten me as to some sort of solution that is affordable?

— 5 —

Anyone see this lovely thing going around on Facebook?

To be honest, I am SO TIRED of people saying we hate gay people. Sure, there’s some weird business going on in Russia. I get it. But it’s not like we’re segregating water fountains and telling them to be slaves over here. If being gay isn’t a big deal (hello it’s not – it doesn’t matter to me what your orientations is) then WHY do we make such a big deal out of it?

— 7 —

My classes are plugging along. Christian Moral Life is mah fave. It’s quite hard (take the 14 page and 4,600+ word study guide for the first test for example) but it’s so interesting. And relevant. I’ve been working on the study guide for several days with a couple classmates and we’ve gone in to talk with our professor about questions we had. He’s a great teacher and explains things in a highly intellectual (but also understandable!) way. And exciting fact! We each get in groups to debate controversial issues and I got abortion. Time to research, learn, and hammer out a defense of the Catholic position. Yes, I’m a happy girl!

Have a great weekend! For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Love says thou shalt not yell

If I had to chose the hardest part about being an active member of the pro-life movement, it would be the people who aren’t really pro-life. But others think they are.

Let me elaborate.

If you’ve been outside an abortion clinic, you’ve probably seen it: the people who stand there and yell crazy thing at people going in. Try to talk to them and they just start going off about how we’re heretics who worship Mary and or we’re not true Christians or something along those lines. Women who are already in crisis mode blast their ipods and huddle close to the boyfriend or mother who is bringing them in as they walk through the barrage of comments. “You’re going to hell!” the people on the sidewalk yell. And the women walk past. Right into the inviting arms of the clinic.

When the women are inside, the men stand there using a traffic cone as a megaphone and yell how the clients are violating each commandment. Oh, and the clinic workers? They let ’em have it too.

One time in the last few months we were outside praying when a boyfriend/husband/partner of a client inside came out for a smoke. The sidewalk is close enough to this particular clinic that you can talk to anyone and everyone outside. However, the man with his cone took the opportunity to condemn the father and elaborate how much of a sinner he was. And by golly, hell was most definitely in his future.

Encouraging, right?

NOT.

I wanted so badly to go and talk to the father. Just ask him how he was. He was so obviously hurting. You could see it in his eyes. Who knows what circumstances led him and the mother of his child there? I could see that he was almost in tears while being verbally abused by this man with the cone. I wanted to intervene, but didn’t. It was so loud and the people who yell don’t listen to what we have to say. But to this day I feel so bad for the man who was out there smoking and pray he has found some peace.

Last time we were outside the clinic, the people who yell were in the middle of a conference (meaning they brought tons of people) and they filmed this video. Be warned, there is some language and graphic signs.

You know what strikes me?

There are people across the country who do this and they always claim to be bringing the gospel to people. But I don’t see that. Jesus ate dinner with sinners, healed, and forgave them. He met them where they were. These people who call themselves abortion abolitionists condemn people. They yell hateful things. There is no love visible to the world. Oh, AND last time we were there some of them were chatting and taking dance breaks outside the clinic.

Now I can’t judge what their motivation is. I know they want to end abortion. But I can’t help but recognize how their movement is centered around a righteous mentality of telling other people what to do.

Sure, stand there with a sign. Yell at people. That’s easy, folks.

You know what’s not easy?

Opening your heart to the clients going in. Putting your comfort on hold to stand in the snow and pray for people who are victims of abortion (the children, women who are coerced, and fathers who weren’t given a say). Getting up at o-dark-thirty on a Saturday morning to offer resources and alternatives to people going inside these clinics. Just being there and starting conversations is hard when you have people yelling nasty things around you.

But it’s important because parents need to know they have options. They need to be empowered with knowledge to be able to make an informed decision. They need to know they are people worthy of love, and that they can make a better life for themselves.

And you know what? Yelling doesn’t do that.

Yelling says “What you are doing is wrong and you are a sinner. You are a murderer. You are a terrible person. How can you do such a horrendous thing?”

But love says “I don’t know why you are here, but I know that you are hurting and need a shoulder to lean on. Let me love you by putting your needs first and taking the time out of my day to be with you and empower you to be the person you can be.”

Now you tell me. If you were a young mother or father facing a crisis moment and in total survival mode – which approach would you be more receptive to hearing?

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 46

— 1 —

Well hello again! Life has been busy. I’m plugging along in classes, and am just getting into a groove after being gone for the march. My favorite class is Christian Moral Life. It’s hard, but I’ve made a conscious effort to put a lot into it. The weather has been crazy awesome around here too (for it being nearly February). Stay as long as you like, sunshine!

— 2 —

Speaking of February, I’ve decided to be part of this blogging challenge.

Yes, it sounds ambitious 🙂 Here are the prompts I’m looking forward to writing on!

— 3 —

My computer is on the fritz right now. And this picture is most certainly an accurate depiction of how I’ve felt a couple times lately.

“Shutterstock” is there for dramatic effect, FYI 🙂

Thankfully my family had an older functioning laptop at home that I brought back after Christmas, so there’s that as a back up. But I like my old one. And it has all my things on it. But I know it’s not going to last, so I’m planning on transferring my things onto an external hard drive this weekend. The main frustration I’ve been having is with the charging cord which simply refuses to charge it. One day I have to shove it against a wall and position it just right for it to charge. The next I have to sit with it balanced just right awkwardly on my legs. AND THEN I have to sneeze or move and it stops charging. FOREVAH. Or at least until I find the next awkward position. But good news! The cord (which I just got in August) has a 3 year warranty. So after I transfer things I’m planning to get the cord replaced and let’s hope that fixes things for the time being.

— 4 —

This is a pretty powerful video. What do you think?

— 5 —

Something I’d love to do: be trained in how to debate. Objections people raise are so easy to see through sometimes, but finding the right words can be hard. This clip was pretty interesting and I liked how Lila was trying to bring it back to the point in question: What are the unborn? I don’t know if it’s a good thing, but I have WAY too much fun coming up with answers for debating people like this. It’s a good thing I don’t post about it often, though, because the snarkiness can be a bit much 🙂

— 6 —

Isn’t this so sweet? I wish our society valued the elderly more.

— 7 —

I have to say that I feel slightly accomplished because I FINALLY wrote an article for Live Action – for the first time since October. It feels oh so good to be back in that groove and there are many posts in the works. You know how people say you don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone? It’s pretty true. I let writing for them slip by for a few months and now I’m so looking forward to continuing. It’s a lot of fun, and I learn so much by researching for each article. You can check out older ones here.

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Why I Marched

Just a few days ago I went on my second March for Life, after going to two West Coast Walk for Life’s before that. Being part of the March is by far one of the most inspirational things I’ve ever been a part of. And this is my thoughts on why . . .

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Back in 2011 I went to my first Walk for Life, which was the first major pro-life event I remember attending. It moved me. It’s funny when I look back in old journal entries and laugh (cringe too) because I was fairly obsessed with musicals and wanting to be a broadway star for the better part of my tween years. I didn’t yet have the direction I now have in my life, which I think I was wanting to fill with musical theater. Don’t get me wrong, I still love music. But I’ve found something better and more beautiful to be part of, and that is defending, protecting, and promoting life.

If someone were to ask me why for pete’s sake I went to freeze to death in D.C., here’s some of what I’d share with them:

I marched this year because I stand in solidarity with all who have been harmed by abortion.

I marched this this year because I believe no one wants to grow up to work in the abortion industry, and those who do work in it need to be given better places to work.

I marched this year because our world so desperately needs people to stand up for what is right, even if it means 55 hours on a bus and freezing in D.C.

I marched this year to be a witness to people in my life how much I love and care about life.

I marched this year because I believe that without action, our beliefs are a moot point.

I marched this year for the 1/3 of my generation who will never see the light of day.

I marched this year for all the mothers who have resorted to abortion sometimes through coercion or lack of resources to choose life.

I marched this year for all the fathers who may or may not have stood up for the lives of their children.

I marched this year for the two babies I named who were victims of abortion.

Ultimately, I marched this year because I believe life is our most precious gift. I believe every single life, regardless of race, religion, or socioeconomic status is unique and unrepeatable. No matter who you are, you are a gift from God, and no one has the right to snuff out your life.

I believe women and our country deserve better than abortion.

The pro-life movement is a movement of love, and the March never fails to remind me of that. To stand there with hundreds of thousands of people who believe in the joy life brings . . . guys. It’s really amazing. It still makes me tear up. I mean, it’s hard to describe how incredible it feels to be part of something that is so much bigger than myself. It’s kind of like holding a baby. In that moment all is right with the world (unless they’re crying or throwing up or something of course). You just look at those precious little eyes, the fingers that curl around yours, and the itty bitty toes that will someday run up and down the hallways. That right there is hope. You don’t know who this person will become, what they will do, or what lives they may touch.

In each person I see the potential for greatness. And I think it’s a shame that in our country we reduce the preciousness of each life to an issue of “rights” – a woman’s right to choose, etc. We’re so much more than that! We are unique, unrepeatable, and made to love and be loved. Abortion does not fit with that notion. And neither does euthanasia, contraception, or the death penalty.

Me? I’m just one person. Sure, I marched for life. But showing the world how beautiful life is takes a lot more than that.

Our everyday lives have to mirror our beliefs. When our joy and love of life overflows to the people we meet, they eventually are going to have to wonder what we’ve got that they don’t. And that, folks is a whole lot of love and hope. That is what I experienced at the March, and it’s why I marched. I marched because I stand for life, love, and the dignity of each and every person.

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