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"Unlikely Hero's : Part 2"

Updated: Sep 17, 2023

Dear Brothers & Sisters, Twenty years ago, John Barros began ministering outside of an abortion clinic in Florida. He has put up with countless insults, verbal and physical attacks, and in recent years he has also been battling pancreatic cancer. John is an unassuming guy. He doesn't come across as a man of great accomplishments, but over the last twenty years he has been used by God to save an estimated 3,000 babies from being aborted. John has been used by God, but he doesn't pretend that he has saved anyone. He realizes that it is God who leads people to see the truth about abortion and choose the path of life. He takes as his charter verse for ministry the words of the Apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 2:24-26 which speaks of correcting with gentleness that "God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will." Ben Zeisloft, who recently interviewed John, noted on a recent twitter thread that "There is much American Christians can learn from John. First, John is an exceedingly average guy. He would be the first to tell you that he possesses no profound intellectual or special giftings. He simply has faith that Jesus will bless his sincere labors. Second, John turns down comfort for the sake of his preborn neighbors. Even as countless elderly Americans pour into Florida to enjoy retirement, he stands outside of the abortion clinic in the blazing heat for several hours each day, usually on crutches because of his old age. Third, John balances grace and truth incredibly well. He knows that abortion is murder and tells mothers about the severity of their actions, but his words drip with genuine love and compassion, and he is devoted to making sure that no woman who chooseslife is ever let down." Note: You can find the interview of John Barros written by Ben Zeisloft at: https://republicsentinel.com/articles/exclusive-christian-wisdom-from-a-silent-hero Here's the thing, John doesn't do what he does to be the hero. He does what he does in hopes that "God may perhaps grant them repentance". And this after all ought to be why we do anything. We ought to do what we do because we desire God to draw people to himself through our speech and conduct. This is why we can lovingly speak the truth in a world that hates to hear truth spoken. This is why we can and should speak the truth and seek justice for those who have no voice. Any other motivation will fall short and fizzle out. So let me ask you, Is your desire that "God may perhaps grant them repentance"? In what ways do you give evidence of your desire for God to "lead people to a knowledge of the truth"? Your calling may not be to stand outside of abortion clinics. But before you throw out that idea as "not for me" simply because it's hard and uncomfortable, consider that John's life gives boots on the ground evidence of this God-given desire to see people transformed by God. What about yours? What have you endured so that God might perhaps grant some repentance? Where is God calling you to kindly, patiently, gently, and persistently speak the truth? Grace & Peace, Matt Matthew Deneault Pastor at Christ Community Fellowship
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