The question on everyone’s mind

The ugliness of this week should push us forward, not paralyze us.

Before news broke that revealed one of the darkest corners of the abortion industry, a fellow pro-life leader told me, “This is the most gruesome thing we, even as leaders, will ever come across.” They were right.

I work in the pro-life movement and have been to over 400 abortion centers around the world. I’ve seen and heard some of the most gruesome and gut-wrenching testimonies. Yet nothing compares to the not-surprising-but-shocking accusation of Planned Parenthood harvesting and selling the parts of babies they kill.

Since the release of this video everyone has one question:

How can they do this?

Many have asked that question – and here is the answer:

If you have the autonomy and will to kill a baby, then you have the stomach to harvest that baby. If you have the stomach to harvest him or her, then you will find the greed to sell him or her. If you are so numb as to sell him or her as “medical tissue” for profit, then you can talk about it in terms of “business.”

And if you can get to that point, then chomping on a salad and enjoying a glass of wine as you talk about it is simply a way of life. But talking casually about livers and craniums of aborted children doesn’t happen overnight, it starts with one step — dehumanizing the human person. If we don’t have a right to life, then we don’t have a right to anything.

Before being hung to die, one of the most inhumane murderers ever to walk the earth repented and made these words his last: “A thousand years will pass and the guilt of Germany will not be erased.”

That was Hans Frank, who served as governor general of Poland under Adolf Hitler. His famous words open the classic historical account of what can happen when we strip human beings of their dignity: The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.

We need sanctity

The human heart is capable of great evil and it is capable of great sanctity. And evil needs to be followed by sanctity.

Last month, I wrote a blog post about how our culture needs us to become saints. Like you, this video is hard for me to watch – just as abortion is still hard to talk about in our families, churches and political debates despite 42 years of legalization.

The video reveals what we all know but hate to think about. Abortion is ugly, graphic and evil. It shocks us because rarely do we get a clear image of its brutality in our daily lives, because most of the time we don’t want to deal with it.

But weeks like this one cannot be ignored. We need moments in our lives where we are outraged, disgusted and motivated. And this video is disgustingly motivating.

We do things we wouldn’t normally do when we’re motivated. We take risks when we are outraged. I challenge you to take a risk and use this video as a point of action, not to dwell on it and get depressed about the state of our culture – that is paralyzing and doesn’t do anyone any good. Instead, face and mourn the reality of abortion, pray and then act.

Use your frustration

I know the motivating power of frustration because the first-ever 40 Days for Life campaign came from frustration. That frustration led to prayer and prayer led to a peaceful 40-day campaign that has now been done in 579 cities in 30 countries.

spring2015birmingham3God can use frustration. He can use outrage. He can use heartbreak. He has many examples throughout history of doing so. He spits out the lukewarm but He fuels those who hand Him just a little out of their comfort zone.

When things seem fine it is difficult for us to make resolutions to pray outside an abortion facility, volunteer at a pregnancy center, have mercy on an abortion worker, or write Congress.

We sometimes have to be jolted to engage the culture; and this week, the culture gave us that opportunity. It wasn’t pretty, but it did remind us that our sanctity is needed in the culture. We need to be humbled before God in light of the atrocities that happen to the most vulnerable among us. And then we need to act.

God will use you in the pro-life movement to bring His joy, mercy and love to the darkest corners of our culture if you use this gruesome video as an opportunity to take a small, big, or first step to ending abortion.

There will be investigations, hearings and media coverage as everything unfolds. But your personal response is the long-term hope for America. I want to close by challenging and asking you and myself the question we should be thinking and praying about over the next few weeks and months:

If this video won’t deepen my resolve to engage the culture, what will?