God's Miraculous Hand in Missouri's HB 126 8 Week Abortion Ban

Nine years ago, April 29, 2010, I suffered a traumatic miscarriage. It was a turning point for me personally in my stand for life. Before that event, I had been pro-life, but I had never shed a single tear over the issue of abortion. I knew in my heart and mind that abortion was wrong and grieved God’s heart, and I had been leading Bound4LIFE St. Louis with my husband for several years.


This event in my life was the thing that finally broke my heart and showed me a glimpse of the Father’s heart for the unborn. It was this experience that opened the flood gates for me and brought the tears. It was also shortly after going through this that I got pregnant. It is always challenging to have hope and faith in God for a different outcome after going through loss and disappointment. I knew I wouldn’t make it through the pregnancy without a word from God, a promise that I could stand on.

God brought me to a scripture that is now my life verse and what I cling to during trying times.

Psalm 126:5-6:

“Those who sow with tears WILL reap with songs of JOY. Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them.”

These verses would not have been as meaningful to me before the miscarriage because I didn’t know what it meant “sow in tears,” that concept was foreign to me. So that’s what I have done for nine years. I have stood at my kitchen sink, on the sidewalk outside abortion clinics and courthouses, and in our prayer room and shed tears as I have prayed for LIFE in my state, and asked God to release the harvest of joy. In many ways, I have been pregnant with this promise of a harvest of joy for nine years! It’s the longest pregnancy ever!

Then in February 2019, I happened to be at our state capitol with another pro-life organization on the day that House Bill 126 passed the Missouri House of Representatives. It was a momentous occasion. This bill is a sweeping pro-life piece of legislation that would ban abortions at eight weeks, among other things. It is known as the strongest pro-life bill in the nation! However, the most defining thing about this piece of legislation was that it was 126th bill filled in this session. God was speaking of my promise, and I knew it immediately!


We continued to follow the progress of the bill as it made its way through our Senate. At the end of April, I had three dreams in the span of a week, and a dear friend had another that we felt were clearly from God. In my dreams, I was pregnant and giving birth; in each one, there was an obstacle in the way of the baby being born. In my friend’s dream, I was also pregnant and had given birth to a baby we named “Steady Endurance.” We took all these dreams to the Lord in prayer and asked for a revelation of what He was speaking so we could pray in line with God’s will for our state. With each of my dreams, I woke up during the hour of 4 am. We felt this was a strategic prayer assignment and felt led to cover the hour of 4 am in prayer.

In partnership with a local House of Prayer, we had a small band of prayer warriors commit to get up and pray at 4 am, two people each day the Senate was in session. Along the way, God was speaking to us through His word and encouraging us to keep going! We committed to the prayer strike until the bill passed, and it ended up lasting three weeks. On May 16th, the last day of our scheduled prayer strike, at 4:01 am the Senate chamber announced that HB 126 had passed by a vote of 24-10! God, once again, was showing his faithfulness to His promises!

HB 126, banning abortions after the eighth weeks of pregnancy with no exception for rape or incest,  now heads to Governor Mike Parson’s desk, who is expected to sign it into law.

- Melissa Jacobs

An Adoption Expert Offers Practical Advice to Avoid Pitfalls and Dispel Fears

Being Pro Adoption Without Being Scammed

Adoption is an idea that rests in the heart of many couples, but fails to come to fruition for a variety of reasons.  Sometimes fear holds them back. Hearing stories of fraud causes them to avoid taking those first steps.

Recent news articles have told the stories of families who have lost significant sums of money in adoption proceedings.  In some cases, the expectant mother bilked them out of funds. In others, the agencies closed down after accepting payments.

Whatever the reason, it’s horribly discouraging to people who are trying their best to adopt and willing to lay out significant amounts of money to do so.  The result is even more people who decide it’s not worth trying.

If you’re considering adoption and want to limit your financial risk, there are a few steps you can take.  Due to all the variables, it’s impossible to risk-proof an adoption process, but you can put guards in place so you limit your potential loss and insure that you’re being good stewards of the finances God’s given you.


Control the Home Study Process

The first step in adoption is getting a home study.  It is a written assessment of your home, history, and preparedness for adoption and will be necessary to file for adoption with the court.  There is no way around this and a good social worker will actually help prepare you for your adoption.

Make sure you are getting the right home study.  Home studies for foster-to-adopt, international adoption, and private adoption are all different.  If you are going through a private agency, make sure you own your home study when it is over and if you choose to go to another agency, you don’t need to pay for the home study to be released.

A home study will cost you up front – there’s no way around that and someone is investing significant time in writing it for you, so they need to be paid for that – but once you pay for it, you should be able to use it elsewhere for a similar adoption rather than be locked in with one agency.  Ask how many signed copies you will receive and if they insist that they don’t give home studies directly to families, go elsewhere.

Avoid Ala Carte Marketing Charges

Some agencies will offer you greater visibility in front of expectant moms if you pay a substantial fee up front.  That’s a huge red flag – trust God to get you in the right spot rather than paying huge sums for websites or specific ads that highlight your family.  Those dollars are very hard to justify.

Direct marketing, craigslist ads, even Facebook pages promoting your availability to adopt are more often invitations to being scammed rather than helpful in connecting with an expectant mother.

Be Careful About Early Matches

It’s not unusual for us to have an expectant woman approach us when she’s only 8-12 weeks pregnant, asking to see family profiles so she can choose a family to adopt her child.   We are happy to help care for her in the process, but we don’t match expectant moms and adoptive parents until the beginning of the third trimester.

At match, most agencies charge estimated fees for the care of the expectant mom.  Many states have relatively modest limits on those amounts, but some do not. A large number of agencies match early to collect those funds up front, knowing the expectant mother may or may not choose to go forward.  If she chooses not to make an adoption plan, the expectant family forfeits those funds.

Ask Questions

Once you are matched, you will most likely need to pay fees.  Ask pointedly, if the expectant mother decides not to go through with her plan, what happens to those funds?  Some of the fees will be unrecoverable (birth mother expenses) but your match fee should not necessarily be forfeited.  Many agencies will offer you a credit on your next match. A few will offer a refund under unique circumstances.

In cases where families are not offered a cash refund, it does not mean they are been scammed. The agency has done all the work they were able to do in caring for the expectant mother, counseling, preparing you, etc.  There is inherent risk in adoption that cannot be entirely mitigated, but that is true of any worthwhile pursuit.

Adoption is not easy or without pitfalls.  Even so, it is a beautiful expression of the heart of God and a key part of standing for life.  May the grace of God rest on those who say yes.

About Randy and kelsey Bohlender

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Randy Bohlender and his wife, Kelsey, have ten children, six which were adopted. They founded Zoe’s House Adoption Agency.  He recently became the Senior Pastor of Hillcrest Covenant Church in Kansas City.

We Must Prepare for Victory Over Roe v. Wade by Launching an Adoption Movement Now

For every strong conviction we hold or every hill we choose to die on, there is the potential that at some point, our critics will say something that makes sense and because they are so wrong about so many other things, we will turn a deaf ear to them.

It nearly happened to me regarding the issue of LIFE.

On January 22 of 2005, in the early months of the Bound4LIFE movement, I was standing in prayer at the base of the U.S. Supreme Court. It was the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision – a day that always brings out a lot of pro-life and pro-abortion advocates.

A member of Bound4LIFE prays while others protest.

A member of Bound4LIFE prays while others protest.

On the pro-life side, it’s largely a somber event. There are always a few with megaphones, but it’s not a party. It’s a collective realization that many babies have died and many more will as long as Roe v. Wade stands.

The pro-abortion crowd is usually much more animated. They chant incredibly vile things and and break into song from time to time. Their celebration of death seems more like the sidelines of a sporting event.

In that chaos, we prayed silently with Life Tape over our mouths. Our silence seemed particularly irritating to those on the other side of the argument. They’d frequently wander behind us and make horrible comments or curse at us, even though my children—then 12, 8 and 4—were standing right beside us. I watched out of the corner of my eye as a pro-abortion protester walked uncomfortably close behind my oldest son and screamed, “What are you going to do if you win? What are you going to do with all those babies? You don’t want them either!”

Randy Bohlender with his wife Kelsey. Their family of 10 children include six adopted.

Randy Bohlender with his wife Kelsey. Their family of 10 children include six adopted.

It is the ultimate in irony that pro-abortion folks accuse pro-lifers of being uncaring. I have found the opposite to be true. I’ve watched pro-lifers give generously towards young women in need. Even so, we have far to go in properly preparing for winning the battle in court. If abortion were stopped tomorrow, we are not prepared for the wave of children that will be born. These children would be born into family situations where due to economics, misunderstanding, or brokenness, parents would have preferred death over life. Now that same stressed out, reluctant parent is faced with caring for a child that they really would have preferred not to carry. Some will get a glance at that baby and have a deep change of heart. Others will not.

What does preparing to win look like?

Since that day, we have considered the words of that critic, “What if you win?”. What does it look like to prepare for the overturning of Roe v. Wade? If we get what we’re asking for, what do we do with the aftermath?

We need to commit to praying through the victory and beyond. The wave of intercession that has risen over the years regarding Roe v. Wade will need to continue in order to care for the thousands of babies that will be born daily once abortion is abolished. Parents who have prayed and prayed for a child realize that once that baby is born, the prayer meeting continues. The church has an intercessory commitment to those babies, and it doesn’t stop at birth.

Randy Bohlender along with staff outside the adoption agency he founded, Zoe’s House.

Randy Bohlender along with staff outside the adoption agency he founded, Zoe’s House.

We need to become pro-child. We know what a pro-life movement looks like when the children are unborn, but what does it mean to be pro-life when that life is born and beyond? We need a corresponding response of families who actively pursue adoption, both through private and state channels. Some ask, “Why private adoption when there are so many in state care that need families?” Many of those private adoptions help children escape the possibility of foster care later. My family has privately adopted six. They were all on their way to foster care if the Lord had not intervened and had someone not said yes to LIFE.

We need to focus on resources for children and those who parent them. In our charity and in our politics, there must be room for providing for children and families in need.

My efforts in adoption are directly related to my belief that life is precious, and that one day the child in the womb will be protected in our nation. That firm belief drives me to prepare for victory with the same fervor that we are fighting the battle at hand.

Gorsuch Confirmation Hearings Highlight the Fact that Roe v. Wade is Unsettled Law

As I have attended and prayed through the first two days of confirmation hearings for Judge Neil Gorsuch, I have had a keen ear for all things discussed related to abortion. I think every Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee has brought up Roe v. Waderepeatedly as a means to incite fear about this man’s appointment to the high court, even though Judge Gorsuch has never ruled on a case directly affecting abortion.

In the first half of Tuesday’s proceedings, an important pro-life judicial matter emerged that is certain to lead the American public to grapple with abortion matters in a fresh and new way.

Senator Feinstein asserted that Roe v. Wade enjoys a “super precedent” status in the judicial system. Her meaning was that in the times abortion-related matters have been challenged, Roe has survived. Judge Gorsuch simply affirmed that Roe v. Wade is, in fact, still on the books. The question is whether Feinstein and other pro-abortion Senators are right. Is Roe so settled that it can never be questioned again? Is it beyond challenge at this point?

The answer is, “Absolutely NOT!”

This isn’t the first time this kind of jargon has made an appearance in Supreme Court nominee hearings. In the hearings of Justice Roberts (2005) and Justice Alito (2006), the term “super duper precedent” was invoked. Back then, Senator Specter used the term with Roberts as they discussed the Court’s future approach to Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey. Roberts didn’t take the bait to affirm such an illustrious status to those cases. He deftly acknowledged that their current precedent would be the starting point. Any theory of precedent that suggests those cases are beyond revisiting is highly questionable.

The point of using such a term is to dupe the public and other courts into not touching a “sacred” decision for the left. Feinstein is misleading Americans by dragging out this language yet again and for suggesting that Roe is settled. Roe is anything but settled law. 44 years of repeated challenges prove that Roe isn’t settled or possesses any super duper status.

Science is exposing truths about life in the womb that is inconvenient to lawmakers bent on protecting Roe. As I sat there listening to Senator Feinstein make her overreaching assertions, I couldn’t help but think about how new information has emerged in recent years that has the potential to dismantle the flawed logic on which Roe was based. In fact, this new evidence is already emboldening lawmakers and eroding Roe at an increasing rate. Make no mistake—Roe sits on shifting sand.

A short time later in the hearing, Senator Graham highlighted this very issue when he informed Judge Gorsuch that he is currently making the case in the Senate for a “pain capable” abortion ban. This piece of legislation, introduced in the House on January 3 as the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 36), is based on the scientific medical evidence that we now know babies in the womb feel the excruciating pain of dismemberment as early as 20-weeks of development. Many note that this ability exists even sooner.

The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act was introduced in the House of Representative on January 3, 2017.

The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act was introduced in the House of Representative on January 3, 2017.

Senator Graham mentioned the new legislation and let Judge Gorsuch know that it will likely be coming before the Supreme Court in the future—presumably a court he would be seated on—when legal challenge is brought against it by pro-abortion antagonists.

The point is that abortion is anything but a settled issue in American society and culture. Roe rests on a viability argument that modern science is increasingly challenging. That’s why abortion activists work so hard to deny women information about life in the womb—science is against them.

Graham hypothetically pondered: what if in the future medical practice is able to sustain life outside the womb at an even earlier stage of development. Does new medical science affect the logic which Roe is built on?

The answer is, “Absolutely YES!”


Attorney Allan Parker clarifies this important perspective saying:

“Judge Gorsuch gracefully and accurately stated that a decided case of the Supreme Court should be given deference and is binding precedent until it is overturned by the Supreme Court under the doctrine of stare decisis.  But all opinions of the Supreme Court are subject to review and correction even under the doctrine of stare decisis.

When a case is no longer just, when facts and circumstances have changed to make the rule of the case unworkable, when a wrong decision has not been accepted by the American people, the case should be overruled. These are just a few of the reasons the Court uses for overturning their decisions.

The Supreme Court has overruled its own decisions on constitutional grounds over 200 times already. If the Court did not—or could not—then we would still have segregated “separate but equal” public schools because Plessy v. Ferguson was the ‘law of the land’ for 58 years until Brown v. Board of Education overruled it.”

The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is a key focus of prayer for Bound4LIFE. Please join with us by contending in prayer for the passage of this impactful piece of legislation that is supported by an overwhelming majority of Americans.

Read more about the unique way God led Bound4LIFE to pray for Judge Neil Gorsuch.

About Matt Lockett


As a full-time missionary, Matt Lockett serves as Executive Director of Bound4LIFE International and Justice House of Prayer DC. He travels and teaches on the subjects of prayer, fasting and governmental intercession—topics covered in his new book Prayer that Impacts the World. Matt and his wife Kim have four children. They live and minister in the Washington, DC area.