The interlude page in the algebra book was the subject of the humor. Well, actually I am the only one who got the humor. Interlude pages, as I call them, are those pages between chapters, that give you subjects like Math Applied To Life.
This one featured positive and negative numbers, so the picture accompanying it was a football player in an unmarked, insignia lacking uniform and helmet, running for (or maybe losing) yards. When the kids asked me what team he played for, I said “They are being politically correct. He doesn’t play for any team.”
After the laughter, all on my part, had died down, they said to me, “Mr. Davis, what does politically correct mean?”
Leading up to the very serious subject of today’s column, wherein I am ashamed to say that I, as clergy, serve a denomination that is so concerned with being politically correct that it has forgotten, for years, to take a stance on some very important issues. Like pregnancy alternatives.
Some denominations, mine included, have gotten so enamored of the commandment, “Thou shalt not influence,” that they have denied the voice of guidance that might reach into the heart of a confused young person and save an unborn life. Or, to paraphrase what I emailed some colleagues recently, “I’m getting tired of our mealy mouthed stance on issues like abortion.”
It was therefore a blessing to attend the Pregnancy Resource Center, 621 North Main St., Clovis, banquet at the Civic Center on Thursday evening and see the amount of support — be part of the amount of support —- that keeps the Center going.
Ministry goals, from the program: “To institute medical services to positively impact a mother’s decision when considering abortion.” In other words, to simply state, in Christian love, “You don’t have to do this. There are other solutions.” That’s pretty gentle, pretty nonjudgmental, yet a definite stance.
Speaking of the banquet, the evening was uplifted by the marvelous voice of Rebecca St. James, an Australian by way of Nashville now living in California Christian singer who sounded enough like Natalie Merchant to make me miss 10,000 Maniacs. (That’s Merchant’s band, for the uninitiated.)
The message was what truly mattered, and of course, anyone in the room already knew how they felt, or they would not have been present. The Pregnancy Resource Center is blessed with a gifted director, Susanna, who combines passion and compassion, zeal and tenderness, in a balance that many of us know is difficult to strike, and (perhaps equally difficult to find) a board that gives her the backing needed to do a tough job.
I have, among the signs on my bulletin board, two which seem to apply to this issue. One says “What Will You Stand For?” The other, predictably, says “What Will You Stand Against?”
Those are good questions to ponder, facing life or death decisions.
Clyde Davis is a Presbyterian pastor and teacher at Clovis Christian Middle School. He can be contacted at: