Tuesday, December 22, 2009

To Pregnancy Center Volunteers: Care Net Salutes You this Christmas!


As Christmas quickly approaches, hopefully many of us are wrapping up shopping and are beginning to assemble with family and friends in our homes across the country. All of us here at Care Net wanted to send you a message of hope and let you know how much we appreciate your support.

We are blessed to have the opportunity to be a part of this amazing ministry. Every day, in pregnancy centers across the country, a volunteer or staff member opens the door and welcomes in someone looking for hope, help, and an encouraging word. We are humbled to be a part of this incredible network of volunteerism that has existed for nearly 40 years. To all those who volunteer in pregnancy centers, we thank you! Thank you for your sacrifice, your love, your compassion, and your courage. You don't always get thanked, win awards or medals, or appear in your newspaper as the local hero. But to all of us here at Care Net, YOU are the heroes that get us up in the morning and inspire us to do our job supporting you out there in the field.

As you can imagine, there will be thousdands of women across the country who will find out over the holidays that they are facing an unplanned pregnancy. Please keep them in your prayers. Pray that they will find the practical help and compassionate support offered freely through their local pregnancy center.

All of us likely know what it's like to face a twist or turn in your life that was unexpected. Many also know what it's like to have had the support and encouragement of a friend, a counselor, or pastor who inspired us to choose to follow a good and hopeful path rather than a path of fear. Someone who encouraged us to let go of our expectations of how we thought our life should be and to open our arms and heart to something different yet surprisingly good.

Well, that is exactly what happens in the heart of so many women and men who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and who, through the help of a pregnancy center counselor, choose to open their arms to new life. It's not an easy path free from challenges; however, it is a path free from the pain and regret of choosing to end the pregnancy in abortion.

Care Net is eager to see that more people are reached with the hope and help of pregnancy centers. We have big plans in the new year to equip, inspire, and promote our network of 1,180 centers in North America. With all that is going on in Washington, this ministry may be the most effective way to save lives - one heart, one woman at a time. Please pray that we will have ears to hear and the hearts ready to listen to how God will direct our ministry in the new year.

As you prepare for Christmas, consider how you might inspire someone in your life, perhaps a family member, to choose the path of hope. Your listening ear might be all that is needed. They may not be facing an unplanned pregnancy but maybe a big fork in the road. Perhaps all they need is to hear what you've learned in your life at similar decision points. Choosing to encourage someone else may be just what makes this Christmas a special one for you.

May the wonder and hope of that first Christmas, of God coming down as a baby in a manger to save us, refresh your hearts this Christmas. We'll see you in the new year - back here at Inspire Life!