Dear Sovereign Redeemer and other friends,
Meet “THE FENCE”:
Sufficiently disturbed by the proclamation of the saving gospel of Jesus outside an abortion clinic (the horrors!), concerned citizens raised funds and voila! – the structure was raised. Well played. Except that I like the fence, I think you should too, and here are three reasons why:
- The Declaration. This fence screams “THIS IS A DIFFERENT KIND OF PLACE!” to everyone who passes by. Up until now, “A Preferred Women’s Health Center of Raleigh” has made every effort to blend in. Don’t think so? Then how do you explain even the name? They may kill babies inside, but the outside is one of a million normal, respectable office complexes, and that is totally by design. Attention is the last thing an abortion clinic wants. Now, complements of THE FENCE, this place of business looks like a seedy massage parlor, complete with a parking lot hidden from view. For a group that is only present two hours a week, I don’t know how we could hope for more than this 24/7/365 declaration. Scream on, fence. Scream on.
- The Symbolism. What could be a better symbol of shameful things done in secret than THE FENCE? Consider Ephesians 5:12: “It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret.” (NIV). Why are people so bothered by the graphic pictures on the signs held by some pro-life protesters? Is it because the pictures represent falsehood? No – they are actual pictures, absent any commentary. No commentary is needed. These signs are disturbing – to friend and foe alike – because actual pictures of what happens in an abortion clinic present the unspeakable. It is shameful even to speak of what is happening in there behind the six foot wall of secrecy. THE FENCE tells the tale.
- The Irony. A world where people committing murder need to be shielded from those who are pleading for their pity is a world turned on its head. Everything is upside-down. Is the remaining twinge of conscience really so dangerous that no one should indulge it before going through with a life-changing – and life-ending – act? Apparently some think so. Maybe the subtle absurdity of THE FENCE will be like a splash of cold water to those who are coming. Sometimes it is irony that jolts us awake. May it be so with THE FENCE.
Friends – I don’t want to win the snark war. And it’s a good thing, because I think we’re dealing with experts. I want Jesus Christ to break into these circumstances with the breathtaking mercy that many of us have experienced firsthand. Some of the most beautiful words in the Bible are found in Isaiah 61:1-3, words which Jesus quoted as prophecies about Himself:
“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the LORD has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.”
I want everyone who comes to this clinic hurtling towards the day of the perfect justice of God to hear of the liberty that Jesus Christ has proclaimed to the captives, that they may trade their ashes for beauty, their mourning for joy and be free. “Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.” (John 8:36).
And if we have to find lawful ways to proclaim this good news over or around THE FENCE, so much the better.