A Note From Chris - June 30, 2022

A Response to Roe v. Wade

I have watched, as I’m sure you have, the responses of people over the past few days in response to the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, returning the decision on abortion to individual states instead of the federal government. I am saddened by the divide not only in our country over the hotly debated decision, but also among followers of Jesus. More than even the disagreement about abortion rights, I am saddened that the church seems to fall victim to the cultural temptation of divisive online disputes and boastful celebrations.

I want to offer two perspectives today, which are most certainly not exhaustive, but I hope help each of us as we move forward through the vitriol that fills almost any conversation on this topic these days. I do not intend to comment on the rightness or wrongness of the Supreme Court’s decisions. Frankly, I’m not sure any of us are in position to fully understand not only the depth of the law they must follow nor the incredible weight they carry in addressing such critical issues for our nation. However, perhaps a few thoughts will help us as Jesus followers living in these often confusing and challenging times.

First, in what is a celebration for some and a time of mourning for others, believers are called to reach into the dark recesses of the world and make every effort to be the hands, feet, and mouthpieces for our Savior. These sorts of cultural moments provide a great opportunity to have peaceful and loving dialogue while also extending grace and love to others who see things differently.
Colossians 4:5-6 says it so well: “Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.”

Paul certainly knew that every issue or opinion or moral conviction was not going to be easy to swallow when an opposing view was shared. So the response we give on social media, in conversations with each other, and certainly with those who are not believers, is critical. The world watches how the church responds in times like these. The stats say that 1 in 4 women in our nation have had an abortion. That stat alone should emit compassion, grace, and understanding toward others by followers of Jesus despite our opinion on the issue. So church, let’s make sure we act like the church. In honor of Christ, let’s bury the “in your face” celebratory memes or the divisive language against the Supreme Court or anyone who agrees with their decision. Those responses have no place among the body of Christ.

Secondly, I believe this moment in history provides the church a great opportunity to live out what Tony Evans calls a “Whole Life Agenda,” a love for people from the womb to the tomb. God has called us to love others, and to love them deeply and sacrificially. No one wrestling an unwanted pregnancy should ever feel their only logical option is termination of that pregnancy, no matter their circumstance. I’m proud that Cornerstone is a church in regular partnership with Safe Families, a ministry to help families who are struggling but are not yet in the foster care system to help reprieve them as they sort out life’s decisions. We are also in renewed conversations with a local group called Restore Network, which works to place children in foster to adopt families locally. We are in partnership with Mosaic, a crisis pregnancy center in Fairview Heights, which helps pregnant mothers and their families make critical decisions. We also are in contact with Thrive, a large crisis pregnancy group in the St. Louis area, seeking how we may help in the near future. This is a great time to double down and be determined to provide extra ministry and help to pregnant mothers, not less. As a church, we are committed to doing all we can to offer hope and help to expectant mothers and families through foster care, adoption, and abortion recovery outlets as the needs arise around us.

My prayer and ask for our church is that together we focus on increasingly being instruments of love, grace, healing, and redemption, because we know that our desire is to live in such a way that others will see Jesus in and through us.

Yours & His,
Chris VandeLinde

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