God Prepares the Called: Volunteering at a New Home Missions Partner
“There is no way I could relate to or be effective with clients here.” That was my initial reaction when I finally agreed to go in to volunteer at the Lowcountry Pregnancy Center.
After years of supporting them in other ways and then being encouraged to actually volunteer by a friend who had served on the board, I decided to answer that call with the idea that I could offer to do clerical volunteer services (a much needed offering). After an interview, when the director said she felt I was best suited to be trained as a volunteer counselor with the clients coming in for pregnancy testing and counseling, the above was my reaction.
My thoughts ran from “I know nothing about ‘that world’” to “How does one counsel someone with thoughts about abortion or who had had an abortion?” to “My world has been too sheltered to get into this.” As I was thinking these (now to me shameful) thoughts, the director was kindly and calmly explaining that they would train me thoroughly and walk beside me every step of the way.
I then recalled a phrase I’d first heard in Bible study fellowship: “God does not call the prepared. God prepares the called.” As I had always espoused those words, I decided I could no longer talk the words if I could not walk them.
She was true to her words. The training was incredible, the help was and is always there, and then, with God’s grace and leading, I simply got started.
Serving at LPC has been one of the most amazing journeys of my life. It has stretched me in ways I wouldn’t have imagined, given me a glimpse into worlds I had only read about, touched my heart at times when it truly ached for a client and at other times rejoiced seeing the change in a young woman’s face when she first saw the heartbeat of her baby and knew it was a living being and one she could not destroy.
Not all clients react that way, sadly, and we assure them whatever they decide we are still there for them. We do want to save lives––those of babies, mothers, and fathers––but we most want to share the love of Christ with all who enter the door.
Among the many services offered––all for free––are pregnancy testing, limited ultrasound, counseling, parenting classes, clothes, diapers, formulas, wipes, baby items (highchairs, beds, etc.), and introduction for reading to children. LPC also provides referral to other resources for help with housing and education and for those who chose abortion, post-abortion counseling––sometimes coming years after the fact.
There are many needs and many ways to serve and get involved in this ministry. Financial support is certainly one. LPC is a non-profit and receives no federal funding. This prevents a tether, so the center is not restricted from sharing the Gospel, among other things.
Every client who tests positive for pregnancy is sent home with appropriate reading materials to encourage her and her significant other, as well as a little gift (booties, shawls, blankets, onesies––often homemade) just as a tangible reminder that someone does care and will be there for and with them.
For more information about this ministry that has served the Charleston area since 1986, you can go to their website at lpcfriends.com. Any member of the Home Missions Team or I would be more than happy to visit with you about the Center. Please prayerfully consider how God would use you in this ministry of saving lives––physically and spiritually.