Good morning, Friends. My name is Matthew St. John, and while I live across the river in Moorhead, Minnesota, I have the distinct privilege of being the senior pastor of one of North Dakota’s great evangelical, Bible-teaching churches.
Let me say plainly that I am utterly appalled at the fear-mongering, intellectual dishonesty, vitriol, and deception that is coming from, not all, but too many of those opposed to Measure 1.
As a pastor, for nearly 20 years I have participated in the meaningful milestone moments that have affected the lives of families from all walks of life—milestone moments characterized by both pain and promise. With regard to the painful ones, I have sat late at night in many a nameless hospital, holding the hand of an elderly man or an elderly woman the moment he or she passed into the presence of the Lord Jesus, with family gathered, quiet tears being shed. I have wept in private family waiting rooms at two in the morning with families trying to process advanced directives—helping families wade through the awful issue of whether to withdrawal medical measures that are helping a loved one’s heart beat or lungs pump oxygen. On occasion, because of the distressed nature of things, families have asked me, as their pastor, to simply make the decision, or at least tell them what to do. We have worked together, and many times I with them have made those important calls that allow some loved one to quietly slip away. These things are painful, they are difficult—they are the hard moments of life in a very broken world.
On the other end of the spectrum, I have rejoiced with moms and dads who have just given birth to little babies brought into the world through the near miracle which is in vitro fertilization. I have held those babies in my hands not long after they have been born, and with those moms and dads and their babies have stood on our church’s platform in front of a thousand people as these same parents publicly dedicated their children unto the Lord Jesus Christ. I have seen these little boys and girls head off to kindergarten, make their way into elementary school, junior high, and then to high school, and, nearly two decades later, have had the joy of seeing these young men and women in college. Talk about something promising!
Let me be perfectly clear: if I thought for one second that North Dakota’s Measure 1 would have negative repercussions on these meaningful milestone moments of both pain and promise, I would be the very first to say so. As it is, Measure 1 does not have any negative influence on these important ends of the spectrum of life—not legally, not morally, not spiritually, and so forth.
Ladies and Gentlemen, friends in North Dakota, it is time. It is time to stand against judicial activist who wish to rewrite the people’s laws to their own personal liking. It is time. It is time to stand strong against the well-funded abortion industry that seeks only what is best for itself. It is time. It is time to stand against the culture of death that permeates our great country and is seeking to dig more deeply into the great state of North Dakota.
It is time. It is time to celebrate life. It is time to vote “YES” for Measure 1.