Posted by: Apostolic Oneness Pentecostals | February 7, 2011

Pentecostal Herald Article: My Stand for Life

Feature Article

My Stand for Life

Aaron Soto

My wife isn’t here tonight because we lost our baby.” I was looking into the misty eyes of a young father after our Sunday School Awards Night. He was holding his beautiful little daughter in one arm and holding the hand of his little boy with the other. Deep sadness and weariness were etched into his face.

I put my arm around the man and with all the love and compassion in my heart said, “I am so sorry to hear this. Your heart must be broken. My wife and I understand the profound pain of losing an unborn baby. Always remember, you’re the father of three children, not two, and you will see that beautiful child some day.”

This sad episode took place just a few hours before I was to write this article about my stand for life. It reminded me once again about the profound significance of an unborn baby. I have been praying for the bereaved family and reflecting on our conversation.  The father spoke of his “baby”—he didn’t refer to his child as a fetus or a mass of tissue. He spoke the truth from his heart and confirmed for us all the great value of life in the womb.

My stand for life goes back to the formative years of childhood. My parents and my pastor instilled in me the importance of taking a stand for the unborn. I recall our family standing together in the park, lending our support at the pro-life rallies that our pastor had organized. The messages at those events were not lost on me; they shaped my views and convictions.

I was taught in Sunday school to pay attention whenever the word “abomination” was used in Scripture. Teachers helped me understand that the word “abomination” conveyed God’s ultimate displeasure for something. The word “abomination” has impacted my conduct, my attitudes, and my role as a pro-lifer. I read in Proverbs 6:16-17 about hands that shed innocent blood: they are an abomination to God. The shedding of innocent blood touches a very raw nerve with God. Because life is precious to God, it is precious to me.

Today, I am not passive in my belief in the value of life. I am a voice for those who have no voice. I refuse to be pro-life in doctrine, but passive in my pro-life duties. I have leveraged God’s anointing, sanction, and favor for the cause of life.

Soon after I became the pastor in Appleton, Wisconsin, I made a point to visit the pro-life agencies in our area to personally thank them for standing on the front lines of the cause and to see what our congregation could do to support them. In the process, it became clear that although the pro-life community of Northeast Wisconsin was vibrant, it was disjointed. I was privileged to sit down with a group of pro-life leaders and together we forged a plan to unite the pro-life community in Northeast Wisconsin. Unite for Life was born. A launch banquet was planned, tens of thousands of dollars were donated, and local pastors were informed. We were shocked when 1,100 pro-lifers attended the kick-off banquet!

Today, leaders of various pro-life agencies in our area meet regularly to chart the pro-life agenda and share ideas. I am privileged to co-direct Unite for Life. We are currently planning a major event to educate and empower pro-life teens in Northeast Wisconsin.

In the process of meeting people from different pro-life agencies, many meaningful relationships have been formed, and people from various organizations have become dear friends. I have been invited to speak at rallies and fundraising banquets sponsored by local organizations. When speaking, the anointing of God has been the secret ingredient for every speech I have ever given. Our flagship agency (Womankind Medical Clinic) in Appleton has invited me to serve as their spiritual advisor. I am both honored and thankful for the privilege to serve our community in this fashion.

Apostolic Truth Church, where I am privileged to serve as pastor, is known to be a “force” in the pro-life community of our area. We have invited various agencies to present their cause and specific needs at our special pro-life services. Some members volunteer their time at pro-life agencies; others support fundraising activities.

Make no mistake; the Great Commission is not the “Great Omission” in our assembly. We are distinctly Apostolic in our community. We preach and reach for souls through outreach, music, and home Bible studies. Our central message is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and the proper response to the gospel communicated in Acts 2:38. However, we are intentional about maintaining the pro-life effort in our church DNA. We made a decision to support the pro-life agenda because it is important to God and we continue to manage that decision.  We have decided our pro-life message will not be focused on what we are against, but rather what we are for—life.

Let’s revisit the family who lost their unborn baby. I spoke with the mother and shared the importance of giving her unborn baby the same dignity and honor she would have shown to her other children, in spite of the fact the baby was lost early in the pregnancy. I helped her understand she didn’t have to just “deliver” the baby and unceremoniously dispatch it down the toilet. We talked about what she could do to honor her child; how she could help family and friends understand that her baby was loved and would hold a special place in her heart. The mother was relieved to hear that her child deserved more than a “bathroom service.” Even this sad experience can serve as an example of how one family can take a stand for life. You have the privilege to take a personal stand for all life.

Pentecostals make powerful pro-lifers! PH

 

Five Things You Can Do to Be a Breakout Pro-lifer in Your Community

1. Have an annual pro-life devotion with your children.

2. Invest your time, talent, and treasure in a local pro-life organization.

3. Let your spiritual leader know that you want to support the pro-life cause in your local church.

4. Be an educated voter and get involved with legislation relating to abortion.

5. Be courageous enough to champion the voice of the unborn when God gives you the opportunity.

Aaron Soto is the senior pastor of Apostolic Truth Church in Appleton, Wisconsin. Aaron is co-director of Unite for Life, and serves as the spiritual advisor to Womankind Medical Clinic.


Responses

  1. It’s always been a mystery to me how some “churches” talk about the “sacredness” of everyone and how precious life is, but they are supportive of the taking of unborn human life. On the points of all life as sacred and everyone being precious in the sight of the Lord we agree – – if we didn’t mean anything to Him would He have fashioned a human body for Himself and become the propitiation for our sins? But I must ask, what has an unborn human ever done to you? Has he robbed a bank or knocked over a 7-11 while in your stomach?

    Are you going to be one of the folks the Bible speaks of when it says: “they say ‘Peace and Safety, Peace and Safety’ but BEWARE for sudden destruction shall come!”

    No human being has the authority to determine when human life begins or ends. That is the Lord’s business! Yes – – you did read that right. We also don’t determine when it ends either.

    Let God take care of His own business.


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