“Behold, bless the LORD, all servants of the LORD who stand by night in the house of the LORD” (Ps. 134:1). This side of glory, servants of the LORD always stand in the darkness of a sin-cracked society, racked by the desert winds of fear; fear of loss, of pain, of disease, of death. This self-imposed sandstorm unravels civilization and is precisely the place God has called His servants to stand and bless Him, letting the light of His righteousness and justice “roll down like waters” to the poor (Amos 5:24). And there is no one poorer than preborn boys and girls in a society that turns “justice into wormwood” as they “turn aside the poor in the gate” (Amos 5:7a, 12b), robbing them of their very lives.
The world was arrested in 2020 by the fear of an unknown virus. Yet, due in large part to the faithfulness of people like you, the CompassCare team never stopped reaching and serving women considering abortion, never even considered it. Not once. Even before the New York State Attorney General declared abortion to be an essential service, the CompassCare team knew women would be in even greater need of life-saving services. So, the servants of the LORD continue to stand stalwart despite the risk to themselves, trusting the truth that “those also who suffer according to the will of God shall entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right” (I Pt. 4:19). Our business is to remain faithful to loving God and our neighbor. The results are God’s business. “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you… and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore, glorify God in your body” (1 Cor. 6:19-20). The fact that believers are the very house of the LORD gives deeper meaning to how we “stand by night” (Ps. 134:1) – undeterred faithfulness to God’s call to love Him above all and our neighbor as ourselves (see Lk. 10:25-37). Fulfilling this call cannot be done through withdrawal.
The Psalmist connects the standing of His servants with the blessing of the LORD, saying, “May the LORD bless you from Zion, He who made the heaven and earth” (Ps. 134:3). Why does the Psalmist want us to remember that blessing comes from the LORD who made everything? Courage. In our frailty, we are tempted to protect our material existence at the expense of our calling. The Psalmist helps us remember that the world and those in it are God’s idea, highlighting the truth that He alone can sustain us, a fact further underscored by Jesus’ resurrection. The resurrection is not a point of systematic theology or sophisticated philosophy but an event that fundamentally reorients us to the truth about life and death. Death is no longer a concern for the true follower of Jesus because He sustains our physical life in the face of danger as we faithfully “seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness” (Mt. 6:33a). And even in the face of the death of our flesh, He will raise our bodies up again after this age is complete.
So, it is no surprise that the God who made heaven has allowed His servants the blessing of increased life-saving service in 2020. Women are even more at-risk for abortion than ever. Yet, CompassCare helped 14% more women have their babies (364 as of December 15) than last year. More women submitted their lives to Christ than ever before too (182), 36% more than last year! While the world wound down, CompassCare soldiered on, exploring new ways to reach more women more effectively in Rochester, Buffalo, and in more abortion hub regions of New York, like Brooklyn. Why? If COVID took the lives of 1,500 people between Rochester and Buffalo in 2020, abortion stole 5,000. The disparity is despicable. Society’s disproportionate response, deplorably selfish. Happily, not only did the Church through CompassCare continue to serve women, but fought for the ongoing right to do so through the lawsuit, CompassCare v Cuomo.
Through adverse political, economic, and health circumstances, God provided His servants an opportunity to stand so that He could show Himself strong on our behalf. He has done so. It is our prayer that in 2021 we will not rob God—through fear or unfaithfulness—of future opportunities to display His glory. What drove Paul’s courage? What was the answer to his question, “Why are we also in danger every hour?” (1 Cor. 15:30). The reality of the resurrection. “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor. 15:58).
Courageously erasing the need for abortion with you,
Rev. James R. Harden, M.Div.
P.S. Let us endeavor never to stop so that “Christ will even now, as always, be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death” (Phil. 1:20b).
“That is just what I need!”
Lily’s first interaction with CompassCare came through a virtual intake appointment, an innovation developed in response to patients’ increased health concerns over COVID-19. Lily then scheduled an in-person appointment, arriving in physical distress. The receptionist, seeing her suffering, quickly responded to her need by alerting her nurse, who gently guided her into an exam room, giving Lily a basin and some anti-nausea medication. Read more.
The Church of WNY Paid Off the Buffalo Medical Office Mortgage in 15 Months!
Thanks to the generosity of pro-life Christians, CompassCare paid off a $330,000 facility in just 15 months! Read more.