Tuesday, March 27, 2012

here's something I really and truly believe in.


"I just want to thank you for being here."  He came up and looked me right in the eye when he said it.  I smiled and was about to thank him for his encouragement when he continued.  "Yeah, thanks for being on campus, because I want you to know that you have made everyone hate you."

"Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man." Luke 6:22

That was just one of the many, many reactions I got during the last week in Florida.  You see, I wasn't just taking a general family vacation for my spring break to hang out at the beach and such (though I definitely hit the beach once--wasn't missing that one).  I went with the pro-life group Created Equal on the Justice Ride to do outreach on college campuses around the state and raise awareness for the injustice being done to the unborn.

I am pro-life.  I've always been pro-life.  But I never knew why.  I have honestly learned so much this week--I can now defend my belief.  I can tell you why.  I can explain to you how it is now biologically proven that life begins at conception.  I can describe why a baby inside the womb is still a human being.  I can walk you through why there should be absolutely no exceptions.  I can tell you where our President stands on the issue and give you real stats that are sometimes blown way out of proportion.  I can look you in the eye and tell you straight-up that abortion is murder.  Murder of an innocent, alive human being.  That we should never justify that act because of convenience.  That it's basically just age-discrimination against the very young, justifying their killing simply because they're smaller than us.

It makes me sick to think that many people are honestly ignorant to the truth.  When we went onto college campuses, we set up scores of graphic signs, depicting the--yes--gruesome reality of abortions.  I talked to numerous people who said, "I have never seen pictures like this."  People don't know what's going on.

The great thing is that for every person that had the guts to come up in our faces and tell us we were hated, or simply to shout a bunch of obscenities at us across campus, there were several who would walk by and say, "Thank you for being here.  This is the most radical thing that has ever happened to our campus, and we need it.  Thanks for being brave enough to tell the truth."

Of course, most people were no where near either of those extremes.  Nearly every day, we had pro-abortion demonstrators or Planned Parenthood representatives set up camp across from us trying to counteract what we were doing.  People would try to ignore us (seriously, you want me to believe that you generally walk around campus with your laptop open?), some would simply make snide remarks, and others would eagerly engage in a discussion.

I talked to a lady from Planned Parenthood one day, and even though we did not see eye-to-eye, I think she was actually surprised at how convincing my argument was.
I talked to a man who drilled me on all the major issues, and then afterward said, "Hey, I'm pro-life.  I just wanted to see if you knew your stuff.  You're good."
I talked to several people who thought our pictures were fake.  Nope, we have a signed affidavit from the photographer.  This stuff is real.
I talked to a guy who didn't have a clue what an abortion really was, and when we described to him what really happens, he couldn't get over how sick it was.
I talked to a woman who honestly just had questions about certain times when an abortion may be acceptable, and by the end she was nodding her head when I said that nothing could justify taking the life of another human.
I talked to a man who went all weirdly philosophical on me, and we kinda had to agree to disagree.
I talked to a man that had almost decided to abort his twins that are now 17, and all he could say was, "I pray for forgiveness every day for thinking that thought.  I would have been a murderer."

There was a woman 9 weeks pregnant considering an abortion, men who thought they shouldn't have a say in the issue (hello, I don't have to be African American to tell you slavery is wrong), post-abortive women filled with either anger or regret, people who thought we were just religious bigots intent on jumping down people's throats and telling them they were going to hell--and then were seriously surprised when we were kind, calm, and respectful.

Our very last day on campus was kind of an odd day for me--I didn't feel as if I got into many good discussions with people, and it was harder to hand out the literature and information we had.  But I got into one conversation with a man who stopped to talk to me, and when I asked him his opinion on abortion, he rather uncertainly told me he thought it should be a woman's right to choose since it's her own body.  So I walked him through the facts and arguments--how and why a baby in the womb is separate and alive and human, how and why no exceptions were justifiable, so on and so forth.  By the end he looked at me and said, "Actually, you totally just changed my mind right now."

It was the first time someone had said that to me in so many words.  And it made me realize--this is what I'm here for.  Even if I had only talked to that one man, that's one more person who sees the light, knows the truth, agrees that abortion should be unthinkable.  That's the kind of change we need.

On our way out of Florida, we stopped at the Birmingham Civil Rights Museum, which was good.  Depressing, because honestly sometimes the way America handles itself is sad, but good.  At the end there was a small section of movements that were inspired by the Civil Rights movement in the US--in China, South Africa, and so on.  I got so excited thinking: Someday the fight against abortion is going to be here.  Someday the things we've said, the pictures we've shot, the videos we've taken, the demonstrating we've done, the lives we've changed, the babies we've saved--those are going to be here.  I'm a part of that history in the making.

 Our country is built on the principle that all men are created equal and are entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  Did you hear what the first item in that list is?  Life.  Yes, life.  So abortion really is just another form of discrimination--taking away the right to life of the unborn.  Who are we to do that?

Wow.  Okay, off my pulpit.  This has seriously been such an incredible, meaningful, life-changing week for me.  I'm planning on doing more outreach here on my own campus, and for many years to come until I see a time when abortion truly is unthinkable.  It's impossible for me to just go back to my normal, everyday routine after having learned so much, actually working to make a difference, and seeing the change.  This is something I believe in, and it's something I believe in hard.  I'm not going to stand by and do nothing about it.

If you have any questions about abortion--whether you agree with me or not, whether you count yourself as pro-life or pro-choice, whether you simply want to know how to defend your beliefs better or get involved or ask about exceptions or stats or whatever--email me.  I've learned so much and I'd love to share some of it.

Hope your week is going fantastically, friends.  Let me know your thoughts, or if you've ever done anything similar, or what you are doing/have done on your break.  Also, Florida was incredible.  I'll show you photos soon.

xo, Jenn

33 comments:

  1. amen, girl. wow. this was so good. i wish i could have been there!

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  2. WOW is all I can say! You go, Jenn!!! Thanks for taking a stand. You are right, it's murder. I once saw a picture that said "Would it bother us more if they used guns?"
    Sounds like you had an amazing week!!
    ~Kathryn <3
    http://chattykathy-kathryn.blogspot.com/

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  3. I'm with Olivia! Totally wishing I could have been alongside you guys. I've never done something like that; it sounds like an amazing experience! It's so beautiful to see God working in your life.

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  4. Wow, Jenn- Wonderful post! I too am pro-life and agree that abortion is murder! Thank you for expressing your beliefs and sharing it with others. Sounds like you learned a lot and you had a nice time in Florida!! Thanks for sharing this!!

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  5. Love everything that you said. :) You and other people like you, are doing incredible things for God. Keep going strong!

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  6. I'm pro-life all the way, but I disagree with the way some people demonstrate against abortion. In my opinion, there's a reason people were afraid that you would shove it down their throat and tell them that God hates them.
    I really, really like it that you just talked to people, and gave them good reasons for your beliefs. Good job. =)

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    1. hmm, I totally understand where you're coming from--we actually had numerous people come up to us on campus and say, "hey, I'm pro-life, but using these graphic pictures and demonstrating openly like this is not the way to go about this."
      my answer is this: what did African Americans do during the Civil Rights movement? they drew awareness by peacefully demonstrating and showing proof (photos of lynchings, etc.) of what was real. why do we see graphic photos of the Holocaust? because it was real. awful, but real. we're just telling the truth.
      so yeah, there are the people that shove it down others' throats. but I don't think that's what we're doing (and we're certainly not saying people are going to hell, or God hates them--simply talking respectfully with people to present the facts--which I believe does surprise some people, and that's too bad). we're simply displaying the truth, and it should offend people. they should be bothered by what they see, because abortion is graphic and awful and offensive and bothersome. and that's what we're there to show.
      sorry for the rambling comment, haha. sometimes I have a lot to say. ;) thanks for your encouragement!

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  7. Awesome, awesome, awesome! Thank you for having the guts to stand by what you believe in :)

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  8. I am totally pro-life. I am not so well-informed about the arguments and don't understand how people can possibly be so ignorant as to think abortion is okay ever-I mean I don't know all the arguments, and I still know when babies are alive-basic biology. Do you know of a site that lists all the details for me to use with those who need some convincing? I don't have the guts for photos-I have seen some drawings of how the murder is done.
    Your story was amazing; I am glad you were so brave. Did you cry? I think I might've cried in a similar situation.

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    1. here on Created Equal's site they have some good answers to big questions that people have. and really, if you have anymore specifically, email me and ask. (:
      no, I didn't cry. it makes me want to cry--and there have been videos and such that have truly made me sick and I've teared up, but out on campus you kinda have to get into practical mode. ;) I know the photos/videos of abortions can be hard to stomach, but if you ever get a chance or feel like you can handle it, it's good to know the reality of it. and if you're trying to convince someone else--well, those photos have a lot of proof.

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  9. amenamenamen! preach it sister!

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  10. this was so good to read. so good. you've got this right, everything you said i agree entirely with. i've always been pro life. and the rest of us are lucky we have someone like you on our side...you sure do know what you're talking about. you're thorough and complete in your thoughts. and you believe in this, that's the important thing.

    for my creative writing tutorial a few years back, i was assigned to write an research essay on the subject of abortion from a pro life point of view. of course, this was easy for me, being in that position myself. i basically wrote down my beliefs. i learned a lot too. then, the scary thing happened. my assignment was turned upside down. i had to write on abortion from a pro choice point of view. that was the first paper i've ever failed in all of highschool. it was ridiculously hard to flip my views, much less try try to write a convincing two thousand worded paper on why abortion is right. because its so wrong.

    i cannot wait to get married someday. and have children of my own. my husband and i will bring into this world a little girl or boy, and i will love my family more than words can say. the thought of someone killing my baby when she or he is still inside of me? its monsterous and unthinkable. i cannot make myself think that abortion is in any way right.

    anyway. that's my two cents worth on this. again, amazing writing. and keep up with your good work!

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  11. This has got to be the best blog post I have read all week. I envy you -- I wish I could've gone with you!
    Wow... amen. The Lord will bless you for your obedience and unfailing stance for what He says is right. God Bless.

    xoxo,
    Jessica @ Diary of a Beautiful Soul

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  12. You did amazing sista :) Put pics up!! :D (Pics of... me?? hahahahah ok I'm done now. *winky face*)

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  13. This kind of made me cry. Which is pathetic, but hey--I'm emotional :P You're wonderful <3

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  14. I’d have to agree with the person who said this was the best blog post she’s read all week. Great job with it, Jenn.
    ~Aidyl

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  15. Great post. I saw that you visited my blog! Thank you!

    Kari

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  16. Jenn,

    This is amazing, amazing truth and I can not say how proud I am of you not only seeing or thinking about the millions of babies lives being destroyed but actually doing something about it. Abortion is one of the most grotesque and barbaric things and, hey, it's great to think about how awful it is but I think we all need to learn to get off our butts and actually start doing something to save lives. Sorry...that's my little soap box :)

    I love what you said about how one day this will be history. Most people when you talk about abortion just say "Oh, wow that's awful but you know the end times things are going to get worse..." Why do they talk about it as though it's already a lost cause? Was not slavery accepted and running wild in American in it's day? We are not defeated. When we stop fighting and give up is when they win and the battle is over.

    Hugs,
    Näna

    p.s. I have to ask did you do this with your church/youth group or was it a school project or something you did with a pro-life organization or just something you and your family did independently? Just curious :)

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    1. I did it with the pro-life organization Created Equal. Incidentally, the founder of Created Equal is the dad of one of my oldest friends. He recruited my brother, sister, and I, and a pretty large group of my friends--high school and college age--as well as some people I didn't know originally (we just had to volunteer and apply).
      It was awesome getting to work with some of my good friends during the trip, and I'm definitely planning on working with Created Equal again in the future. (:

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  17. Thanks for taking a stand! I'm pro-life, too. I can't understand how anyone could ever abort their baby. My cousin just had a baby, and as I held him, I realized what treasures babies are.

    Anyway... I won't go into a long speech. But it's great that you did spoke for the millions of innocent babies that can't speak for themselves :)

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  18. I am one of those grey haired sidewalk warriors going to the 2 abortion clinics still in our city and am totally encouraged by your post. Even in my generation we know only love and kindness can bring a message of light to those in darkness. You are so very articulate and devoted - may our Lord richly bless you in all you do in your life. And I agree that if I stand and pray and talk for 10 years and still change one heart, then I have done what God wills for me. We are all called to be faithful and not necessarily successful - He is always the one who succeeds through us.

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    1. Wow, that is so so amazing. I would love to do that kind of outreach someday. Thank you so much for your encouragement...keep fighting the good fight!

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  19. My taco! You are an amazing writer! And YES, I am writing on your blog. :) Enjoy it while it lasts. :)
    anyway, thanks so much for putting up with me and my crazy dad and his wacko job last week. I'm so glad God has lit your heart on fire for this movement! Looove this post! <3
    ~Your Taco

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  20. This post is wonderful, Jennoelle! Love it. I'm definitely pro-life, and it's nice to know there are still some people out there who are. It seems like no one ever cares anymore, and it's very sickening!!!
    I also want to thank you so much for supporting the website I'm a part of, Project 147. Seeing so many people wanting to help take a stand makes me extremely happy. I just know this little project is going to grow into something wonderful, and I want to tell you how much I appreciated your following our twitter and sweet comment <3 xoxo.
    ~Natalia

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    1. Oops, just realized I'm logged into our Project 147 account, haha. But it's Natalia from nisfornatalia.blogspot.com :)

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  21. Nah, abortion is the way to go! Isn't the world's population big enough? And there's nothing worse than unwanted kids... ;-)

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    1. First of all, I don't think you can say unwanted kids are worse than murdered kids.
      Secondly, overpopulation is a myth. And even if it wasn't, you can't justify killing babies because of it. If that were okay, then why don't we just start with murdering you? Or hey, let's kill the senior citizens to make way for young people, or maybe all the people with disabilities, or all the Asians.
      No, you can't do that. That's discrimination--justifying the mistreatment [in this case, murder] of a targeted group [in this case, unborn children], and we wouldn't tolerate it anywhere else. So why do we say it's okay in this instance? We shouldn't. It isn't.

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    2. I think we'll just have to agree to disagree on this one! ;-)

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  22. That was such a wonderful and refreshing post! That sounds like such an amazing experience to talk to people about why abortion is so horrifically wrong. Have you seen the movie "180"? It's about half an hour long and documents a guy talking to strangers about what they believe on abortion and how the people make a "180" by agreeing at the end that abortion is wrong. It's a really amazing movie and gets me really motivated. :)
    Anyway, I just wanted to say how much I loved this post, and praise God for helping you guys convince other people to be pro-life! :)

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  23. Hi, Jenn.

    My daughter, Nana, shared this post with me. I am glad she did. What an excellent job you are doing of sharing the truth both here on your blog and it seems on campuses in this great "free" country of ours. When I was your age, I too walked, debated and spoke against abortion. Women's rights was all the rage and we friends were quickly divided on this issue. After I became a Christian, I understood what I had fought for in a brighter light than ever before. Thank you for the work you are doing for those who can not speak for themselves.

    Kat

    Pro-life advocate and Mama to 9

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  24. I've been so lame about commenting, but I wanted to say-- THIS IS AWESOME. wow--I'd love to be a part of something like that. so amazing to hear about the different people who listened!

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