by Jojo Ruba
My youth group and I were at our local grocery store buying their favourites (chicken wings and ice cream) when the cashier commented about how I had so many children. I laughed and said that I was just their church youth leader, not their dad. But as they began to calculate their ages and mine, my youth group figured out that I was in fact old enough to have fathered them—in fact all of them, if I had timed it right.
Putting aside that (scary) thought of being the father of a dozen or so kids, that conversation made me think about where my life would have gone if I didn’t become a full-time pro-life apologist. If I had gone the route of working a regular 9 to 5 job and had settled down, gotten married and had kids, how old would my kids be? What would their personalities be like? Would they have the same sweet-tooth I have?
I have no regrets about doing ministry and, of course, doing ministry is not incompatible with having a family. But I do know God in His wisdom has allowed me to do so much more because I’m single. I can travel to presentations without having to worry about what’s left at home. I can work late hours and not disturb or be disturbed. And especially now in Canada, when hostility against Christians and pro-lifers is at all-time high, I don’t have to worry about protecting my family from such intolerance.
Yet it’s hard not see this work as a sacrifice during the holidays. I love spending time with my nephews, and now that I live in the same city as they do, I can watch them grow from rowdy toddlers to godly men. But as I watch them create family memories over Christmas or Thanksgiving with their mom and dad, I can’t help but envy those moments.
That’s why it was great for this single guy to get this Mother’s Day message that reminded me why this sacrifice is worth it:
I wanted to encourage you and show you a picture of the precious life you helped us save. You really did.
I had a boldness about my anti-abortion beliefs that came from watching your abortion debate and your work on social media, and this helped me to confront someone with love and respect.
You never, ever know who will hear your messages and how they will be impacted! Thank you so much for your faithfulness! God uses social media!
P.S. The baby is in perfect health and meeting (and probably surpassing) her developmental markers. All praise and Glory to our Great God! And isn't it cool that all of this was brought to mind on Mother's Day weekend? Wow.1
I know not all of us can celebrate Mother’s Day. Some of us have broken or strained relationships with the woman who gave birth to us. Others have lost their mother and are missing her terribly. But Mother’s Day is also a chance for us to fight for mothers all around us. Whether they are moms of born kids or pre-born ones, they need to know how valuable they and their children are—to us and to God. And we need to be bold enough to speak that truth into their lives.
The friend who sent me this e-mail also said this story has already impacted the lives of so many. She says, “People—non-Christians—have been pretty moved by this story. I hope it saves more innocent babies and brings people in touch with their God. God is so good!”
It’s the best Mother’s Day gift this single man has ever received.
1 (Note this message is edited for confidentiality and grammar purposes.)