Living Hope that Speaks to Life

By James Lamb, executive director, Lutherans for Life

livinghope1The words still haunt my mind: “In memory of our aborted grandchild.”

I have signed hundreds of acknowledgments for gifts given in memory of someone, but this one—it just seemed out of place. What was it doing there with the others? What kind of culture do we live in that precipitates such unnatural sorrow?

It is a culture of death, a culture that results from hopelessness and leads to hopelessness. This culture persuaded the son or daughter of the above grandparents that things were hopeless and the only way out of this situation was the death of the baby. But the reality of this desperate and hopeless act only brought despair and hopelessness.

It struck me on a personal level that I was about to sign this one as I signed all the others, those given in memory of a grandma or a husband, etc., as if they were the same. The culture of death fosters that kind of thinking as well. It numbs us to the scope of the horror of abortion and of choosing death to solve our problems at any stage of life. Our culture leads us to believe these are just “issues” on par with so many others.

So I thanked God for this “slap in the face” and resolved that I personally, and Lutherans For Life as a ministry, would never be lulled into thinking that what we do is routine or mundane or unimportant. What we do is critically important! For we not only know the terrible reality of the hopelessness that led to the death of a grandchild, we know the hope that comes from a living Savior!

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3 ESV).

So many people need this living hope applied to their lives. There is no need for the hopelessness that leads people to look for hope in death. Through His cross and resurrection, Jesus defeated sin and death and gives forgiveness and life—and LIVING HOPE!

Lutherans For Life applies this living hope to the lives of people caught up in the hopelessness of our culture of death. Sally was such a person. Pregnant at 16, she saw no hope and scheduled an abortion. The day before the abortion, she happened to read an article in our LifeDate journal entitled, “A Teen’s Desperate Call for Help.” She said, “I thought this whole story was about me.” Sally changed her mind—and ended her letter:

“I just wanted to thank you for the magazine. I know God reached out to me. I am not going to hurt my baby. I cannot believe how close I came to doing something I would regret for the rest of my life. I am going to consider adoption.”

I am so grateful for how our Lord worked in Sally touching her life with living hope. I will never have to sign an acknowledgement letter to her parents for a gift in memory of an aborted grandchild!

I am grateful for how our Lord brings living hope to so many lives through LFL’s materials, curricula, website, Facebook page, and more. I am grateful for how He brings hope through LFL’s speakers, grassroots leaders, chapters, LMCs, and Life Teams.

I am grateful for how our Lord works through people like you to provide the funding we need to keep applying His message of living hope to people caught up in the hopelessness of a culture of death.

Editor’s note. This first appeared at lutheransforlife.org and is reprinted with permission.