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Susan Wanderer has worked with families in kids ministry for 20 years, with the last ten years serving as Kids Minister at Mount Ararat Church in Stafford. Susan and her husband Ed reside in Fredericksburg and have three amazing kids who joined their family in 2011 and who fill their days with adventure. Come join the conversation over at www.susanwanderer.com 

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My Stomping Grounds

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Sometimes I feel the need to call a family meeting with Team Wanderer. Just to clarify a few things.  When we call a Team-Wanderer-Family-Meeting it's to clarify what we believe and how we make choices and live this life we’ve been given.

Lately, I feel like the ones of us that wear the tag of Pro-Lifer need to have a little family meeting. With this current climate in America the waters seem murkier and more confusing than ever. A family gathering to regain some clarity feels right.

All you pro-lifers, pull up a chair, grab a cup of your favorite beverage and let’s chat.

I personally am gonna take a big gulp of my unsweetened iced-tea and a deep breath.

Please do not take this as scorn or anger.  These words are as much for myself as they are for my fellow friends.  I am pointing to my own heart harder than I am pointing at yours.

As tangled as this topic is, here are my thoughts (on a very tension-filled issue).

Sometimes I think we pro-lifers need to be reminded that being pro-life means that we are for life outside the womb as well as inside the womb.  We may need to reminded ourselves that we are Pro-The-Whole-Span-Of-Life.

Do we picket for the unborn-baby-clinics yet we are unable to feed the hungry adolescent whose only hot meal comes from public school? Do some of us wag a finger at the pregnant mama but are unable to help diaper her newborn she chose to keep?

Pro-Life means caring for life for a Lifetime. Cradle to Grave.

And if we aren't showing human decency, compassion, grace & love towards humans throughout the entire life-span then we perhaps need to rethink our title as a pro-lifer.

Let’s think why we believe in life and the kind of life we hope for others.

I am a pro-lifer because I personally believe all of humanity has been created in the image of God. And we are His masterpieces. And I believe it matters how we care for and treat His masterpiece. Both in the womb and outside the womb.

I understand that is a loaded phrase in the pro-life vs. pro-choice world. But remember, this is a pro-life family meeting. If I just offended a pro-choicer with that, please know that’s not intentional, we just happen to stand on different sides of the Roe v. Wade aisle.

Here’s what I mean about Pro-The-Whole-Span-Of-Life: We Serve Others.

If there are people that are hungry, we feed them.

If people are tired and hurting, we provide comfort.

If groups of people need to be reminded that they matter, we become that voice.

If a pregnant, scared pregnant girl or woman isconsidering abortion or adoption and needs comforting, we choose to comfort. We choose to hold her hand instead of a DO-NOT-MURDER sign. We choose to tell the truth of life-importance with grace, mercy and love.

No offense needs to be had on WHY someone is hungry or WHY someone is hurting or WHY a group of people need a reminder that they matter. We simply serve them. By serving them, change happens and the unraveling of WHY becomes clearer. 

We need to be reminded: We don't have to approve or agree with the choices, situations or life circumstances of others in order to honor and serve them. 

What if we decided to pour out compassion to prove to others that they are valuable, they matter and they are loved?

Compassion changes hearts. Compassion moves people towards greater understanding. Compassion leads us closer to the mission of loving humanity well.  

Pro-Lifers, we affirm the life of humans.

We affirm the born and the unborn, we affirm women, we affirm men, we affirm children and adults, we affirm all races and nationalities, we affirm humanity because we are made in the image of the very One who created us.

Let’s go serve people well by loving others well.

Go to a homeless shelter and fix dinner, go to a pregnancy center and take maternity clothes and gift cards for mani-pedi’s, call up the local refugee services and provide a refugee family a meal, sponsor a foster child to attend summer camp, deliver meals to the home-bound in your community, make blankets for the local cold weather shelters.

There are hundreds of ways to honor the lives of those around you.  Pick one and move forward. Your kiddos will follow your compassionate example.

Pro-Lifers, I love our team, I love that we choose to love life and love humanity. Let’s cheer each other on as we seek to serve those around us.

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Pouches' Community Corner

This month Pouches learned about a very important resource for families who have lost loved ones to sudden tragedy, an organization called LLOST.

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The foundation has helped 44 hospitals in 22 states through their Treasured Memories program. The program sends nurses to bereavement training, and provides or supplements the $55 memory boxes that include clothes, booties, handknot blankets, pictures, foot prints, hand prints, clipped hair and other mementos.

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