Obamas & Mamas

Senator Obama’s speech was excellent, with a few exceptions where he may have overstepped . . . he was biting a live rhino horn when he said McCain is not willing to go to the cave where Osama bin Laden lives. Aside from that and a few rhetorical areas that could have been stronger, it was a great acceptance speech for the nomination and a historic moment, the first-ever African-American nominee for president and reminiscent of JKF and MLK in different ways.

More detail about one thing Senator Obama said, paraphrasing, We may never agree on abortion, but can we all agree that less unwanted pregnancies could be a common goal in cities where we live?

Yes, I can agree that’s common ground. I had a chance to speak to a group of civic, educational, religious, business people planning a new initiative for East Tulsa and said I’m willing to work with any group to help reduce unwanted pregnancies, and if that means I partner with people who believe differently from myself about abortion, then I would want to find common ground where we can help single moms, children, and to reduce the number of abortions.

My brother and sister-in-law have been people of action and not just rhetoric. They teach abstinence in public schools and a variety of churches and youth groups. See http://www.drtoby.blogspot.com/ and the organization he partners with in New York, which is also nationwide: http://www.care-net.org/.

Toby and Deb are doing something about our belief that abortion is a sin of taking life–something that is more powerful than picketing in front of abortion clinics or Planned Parenthood centers. The militant way of protest, the in-your-face rhetoric of “religious” people alienates those who have had abortions, but Toby and Debbie have compassionately reached out to hundreds of teen mothers, helping them understand a better way than abortion.

At least four families at Garnett Church, and many you know, are taking in children from mothers with unwanted pregnancies. They too are taking their belief more seriously than making this an “issue” they talk or email forward about and merely vote on.

Prophets, John the Baptist, James the brother of Jesus, Jesus Christ all speak of helping the fatherless, widows, orphans. I believe if spoken or written today, single mothers would be added to this call to aid those in need.

When I preached last month from Jeremiah, I asked whether this election year we will settle for “ticking” and “clicking” or will we do something more real and substantial. Will you do more than just vote or click an email forward this year?

Your actions are just as important or more important than your vote. And would you consider voting on more than one issue? Your vote does not have to ride on one issue alone, be it foreign policy or abortion or war or economy. Would you pray about your vote rather than making your vote for a particular party a foregone conclusion?

Are you willing to partner with people in your community that you may not see eye to eye with on every issue in order to help reduce the number of abortions or unwanted pregnancies this year? Willing to take in a child? Willing to do abstinence teaching? Willing to help a single mother?

A refreshing retreat

Just back from a Garnett staff retreat. One of the best staff retreats I’ve ever been part of. Wade Hodges led us through a new kind of conversation, different from the questions that get us stuck like the time I was out fishing in waders and got caught up to my knees in mud. Those questions focus on problems rather than possibilities.

I bet Wade will be posting something soon about it and maybe he’ll list some of the questions from Peter Block, one of the resources he used in leading a great retreat for our staff.

Thanks to the Hillenburgs who let us use their cabin. What a wonderful place to meet and dream and connect on a deeper level with our staff and shepherd team.

Back to blog

As of today, August 11, 2008, I’ve pointed all urls back to this WordPress blog, rather than a new interface I tried.

I tested Mac’s iWeb for half a year and don’t like it . . . I may post a list of why I don’t like it another time, if you’re curious. Sorry for change, but I think everything should still work the same for you if you use either http://www.gregtaylor.cc or https://gregtaylor.wordpress.com.

By Greg Taylor Posted in Uncategorized