For every strong conviction we hold or every hill we choose to die on, there is the potential that at some point, our critics will say something that makes sense and because they are so wrong about so many other things, we will turn a deaf ear to them.
It nearly happened to me regarding the issue of LIFE.
On January 22 of 2005, in the early months of the Bound4LIFE movement, I was standing in prayer at the base of the U.S. Supreme Court. It was the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision – a day that always brings out a lot of pro-life and pro-abortion advocates.
On the pro-life side, it’s largely a somber event. There are always a few with megaphones, but it’s not a party. It’s a collective realization that many babies have died and many more will as long as Roe v. Wade stands.
The pro-abortion crowd is usually much more animated. They chant incredibly vile things and and break into song from time to time. Their celebration of death seems more like the sidelines of a sporting event.
In that chaos, we prayed silently with Life Tape over our mouths. Our silence seemed particularly irritating to those on the other side of the argument. They’d frequently wander behind us and make horrible comments or curse at us, even though my children—then 12, 8 and 4—were standing right beside us. I watched out of the corner of my eye as a pro-abortion protester walked uncomfortably close behind my oldest son and screamed, “What are you going to do if you win? What are you going to do with all those babies? You don’t want them either!”
Randy Bohlender with his wife Kelsey. Their family of 10 children include six adopted.
It is the ultimate in irony that pro-abortion folks accuse pro-lifers of being uncaring. I have found the opposite to be true. I’ve watched pro-lifers give generously towards young women in need. Even so, we have far to go in properly preparing for winning the battle in court. If abortion were stopped tomorrow, we are not prepared for the wave of children that will be born. These children would be born into family situations where due to economics, misunderstanding, or brokenness, parents would have preferred death over life. Now that same stressed out, reluctant parent is faced with caring for a child that they really would have preferred not to carry. Some will get a glance at that baby and have a deep change of heart. Others will not.
What does preparing to win look like?
Since that day, we have considered the words of that critic, “What if you win?”. What does it look like to prepare for the overturning of Roe v. Wade? If we get what we’re asking for, what do we do with the aftermath?
We need to commit to praying through the victory and beyond. The wave of intercession that has risen over the years regarding Roe v. Wade will need to continue in order to care for the thousands of babies that will be born daily once abortion is abolished. Parents who have prayed and prayed for a child realize that once that baby is born, the prayer meeting continues. The church has an intercessory commitment to those babies, and it doesn’t stop at birth.
We need to become pro-child. We know what a pro-life movement looks like when the children are unborn, but what does it mean to be pro-life when that life is born and beyond? We need a corresponding response of families who actively pursue adoption, both through private and state channels. Some ask, “Why private adoption when there are so many in state care that need families?” Many of those private adoptions help children escape the possibility of foster care later. My family has privately adopted six. They were all on their way to foster care if the Lord had not intervened and had someone not said yes to LIFE.
We need to focus on resources for children and those who parent them. In our charity and in our politics, there must be room for providing for children and families in need.
My efforts in adoption are directly related to my belief that life is precious, and that one day the child in the womb will be protected in our nation. That firm belief drives me to prepare for victory with the same fervor that we are fighting the battle at hand.