“A kindergarten class killed every 2 days in our state”

160421sandysalmonAs the Iowa Legislature debates whether taxpayers will be compelled to continue giving millions of dollars annually to abortion providers and advocates, a powerful voice of conscience has risen on the House floor.

Rep. Sandy Salmon, R-Black Hawk, made the following, stirring comments on Tuesday, April 20, 2016.

As fellow pro-life champion Rep. Greg Heartsill declared in a widely distributed email afterwards, “Please join me in encouraging and thanking Rep. Salmon for her courageous, principled, and indefatigable stand for the unborn!”

I want to thank House leaders and committee leaders for bringing forward this change in our family planning services program that not only maintains services to our families, but steers them towards better and more comprehensive health care providers and away from organizations that kill unborn children.

This amendment is brought forward to fully cut off taxpayer funding from organizations that kill unborn children. The state family planning program that excludes abortionists that Rep. Fry has explained to us is only one of 11 streams of taxpayer funding the state can control that I have found that goes to abortionists. This amendment addresses the other 10 streams of taxpayer funding going to them. It does this 2 ways:

1) When a contract with an abortionist expires, it is simply not renewed with them. All contracts expire on various dates this summer. A non-abortionist must be chosen.

2) Title X Family Planning moneys are required to be distributed according to the same prioritization as are the moneys in the state family planning program we are setting up.

Iowans have 213 federally qualified health centers and rural health clinics besides those in urban centers where healthcare can be accessed without depending on the few abortionists in the state. These health care centers/clinics serve low-income, medically under-served populations, and provide comprehensive primary and preventive healthcare as compared to abortionists’ limited healthcare options, but do not commit abortion. Therefore, abortionists are not needed and certainly do not need taxpayer funding.

About 4500 babies each year lose their lives in Iowa at the hands of abortionists. This is the equivalent of a kindergarten class being killed every 2 days in our state. Abortion accounts for about 50% of abortionists’ health services revenue. Their activities result in deadly consequences for babies and mothers, both physical and/or emotional. Those organizations do not strengthen us as a state but rather their culture of death weakens us spiritually, morally, and in our respect for human life and the rights of others. As if that is not enough, what would 180 more kindergarten classes across the state of Iowa do for our schools’ struggles with declining enrollment? How much does this contribute to a stagnating population? How much does this contribute to an undermanned workforce? How much does this weaken our economy? How much easier would it be to provide services and lower taxes with a greater population and an increased tax base? Organizations that kill unborn children cut us off from the blessings that God wants to give us. They devalue the life God has given us, a life that has inestimable value in His sight.

Abortion has ruined our judgment and has spawned multiple forms of corruption. A lawsuit is currently being litigated against abortionists in our state in federal court over a credible allegation of Medicaid fraud according to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit. This case involves about half a million potential false claims worth up to $28 million of potential taxpayer fraud. Federal law requires a State Medicaid agency to suspend all payments to a provider where there is a credible allegation of fraud.

Furthermore, there are numerous government audit reports demonstrating Medicaid fraud on the part of these abortionists. Most recently they were fingered by the Nebraska State Auditor for Medicaid billing for abortion-related procedures, which is illegal. We have moved legislation in this chamber in response to videos revealing the illegal harvesting and selling for lucrative profit of aborted baby body parts. The U.S. House of Representative just released a report tonight from their investigation proving this very thing. Video footage and lawsuits also reveal abortionists disregarding states’ informed consent laws, disregarding states’ regulations for clinics, and disregarding sexual abuse laws and protecting statutory rapists and protecting sex traffickers. What law have they met that they consider important enough that they should obey it? Nearly a dozen states have already suspended public funding to abortionists, including Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin who has done so with the same abortionists we have here in Iowa, and this past January the U.S. Congress, in a historic vote, chose to defund abortionists.

The state of Iowa should have no part in doing business with organizations such as this. Credible research polls show that when Iowans know the facts, they are opposed to it. Iowans support better and more comprehensive healthcare than they could get with abortionists.

Where we put our money is where we put our heart. Iowans want us to put our money not in death but in life.

Iowa House votes for women’s health, cuts funding to Planned Parenthood

Thank you, Rep. Sandy Salmon and Iowa House Republicans, for standing up for taxpayers, women, and children!

Read KCCI’s article about Wednesday’s House-approved budget here.

For years, Iowans have been pumping millions of tax dollars into 13 women’s abortion clinics, most of them located in only a few, urban areas. These clinics don’t offer basic women’s health services like prenatal care or mammograms, but they’re politically connected and receive massive amounts of public funding.

Iowa House Republicans have advocated instead funding 213 other clinics throughout the state, including many in rural areas. These clinics care for women and their children, offer more comprehensive care, and are more accessible to expectant mothers.

It’s time women in Iowa were given a real choice in their health care, instead of being forced to fund just 13 clinics in order to subsidize abortion.

Road trip for revival with the Newsboys!

Ashley, Kathy, and Darla on tour with If 7:14 and the Newsboys
Ashley, Kathy, and Darla on tour with If 7:14 and the Newsboys

by Darla Vander Plaats

2,328 miles in 5 days, plus three concerts! That’s a road trip!

The FAMiLY LEADER’s Ashley, Kathy, and Darla set out on March 30 for Montgomery, Alabama, to attend the first ever Newsboys concert to feature If 7:14. The van was loaded with T-shirts, books, and other goodies to be distributed at concerts for the Newsboys’ 2016 “We Believe … God’s Not Dead” tour.

The weather was challenging, with driving rain, thunderstorms, and flash flood watches throughout the route. Yet God brought the team safely to Montgomery in sunshine for the first concert, where they met Noah (stage name Young Noah).

Noah and the ladies
Noah and the ladies

Noah is an up-and-coming artist breaking into the concert scene with this tour. He’s thrilled to be able to perform a collaborated song with Audio Adrenaline at each concert. He is also the official If 7:14 promoter at all of the concerts. He sets up the booth and tells people about If 7:14. After he performs, kids are drawn like flies to honey to talk to him and have their pictures taken, so there is tremendous opportunity to present If 7:14 to them and to their parents.

The ladies loved getting to know Noah and helping him as he learned the ropes of both If 7:14 and the other aspects of the concert world (like adoring adolescent girls – in his words, “Awkward!”). This fall he is looking forward to continuing with the Newsboys as an official warm-up act! His engaging and energetic personality is truly an asset for If 7:14.

Let me tell you, it was so exciting to see and hear the If 7:14 video played on the huge screen with 2,500 concert attendees watching it. It was even better when Michael Tait, lead singer for the Newsboys, gave an impassioned and compelling encouragement for everyone there to download the app and begin praying in unity with other believers for revival!

Have YOU downloaded the free If 7:14 app yet? Click here now!

Michael cast a big vision of believers in every time zone, around the world, seeking the Lord as one in a global rhythm of prayer. Michael told us in a text that he is “beginning to make this thing my own, and I love it because it’s what I do every day, pray without ceasing.”

The day after the Montgomery concert, the ladies packed up and headed northeast to Woodstock, Georgia. Woodstock is a suburb of Atlanta, and this time the travel challenge was big city traffic! The concert was held at First Baptist Church of Woodstock – absolutely huge and beautiful! There were 5,000 worshippers who attended the concert and just rocked the foundations!

5,000 join in worship with If 7:14 and the Newsboys at
5,000 worship with If 7:14 and the Newsboys at First Baptist Church of Woodstock

Kathy loved the time she spent at the If 7:14 booth during the concerts: “I appreciated meeting the concert goers who genuinely asked what If 7:14 was all about, and after describing the mission of our initiative they completely agreed, faces lit up, and they joined by downloading the app,” she said. “It gave me hope to see that the body of believers knows there is more to this thing than religion; we are seeking humility; we are seeking transformation; we are seeking community; we are seeking Christ. Prayer is what they believe needs to take place to find transformation of the church and nation.”

Another late night and another road trip back to Alabama brought us to Tuscaloosa, home of the Crimson Tide. The concert venue was an amphitheater along the Black Warrior River. It was a lovely, clear but chilly night. By this time, the ladies felt like they knew all of the songs and had started to look forward to their favorite parts of the concert.

Darla loved the moment each night during the Newsboys song “We Believe” when the band dropped out and the crowd sang as one, “We believe in God the Father. We believe in Jesus Christ. We believe in the Holy Spirit. And He’s given us new life. We believe in the crucifixion. We believe that He’s conquered death. We believe in the resurrection. And He’s coming back again.”

And of course, they all loved hearing Michael tell the crowd about If 7:14 each night.

Newsboys lead singer Michael Tait on tour with If 7:14
Newsboys lead singer Michael Tait on tour with If 7:14

After Tuscaloosa, it was only 13 hours and 833 miles back to Des Moines! The girls were grateful for many things – safe travels, successful concerts, and most of all, the opportunity to actually be in attendance and see the culmination of what God started two years ago when He brought the Newsboys and If 7:14 together for the first time.

Ashley noted that “getting out of the office and talking with so many people about this initiative we’ve been working on for so long was really encouraging. It’s easy to sit in the office and discuss how we think people will react and the best way to reach the maximum amount of people. But to actually get out on the road and talk to hundreds of people and connect personally, that really changed my outlook on If 7:14 and The FAMiLY LEADER and our potential.”

It was an amazing road trip. It has been an amazing journey for If 7:14. We look forward to the next steps, knowing that God has it all in His hands. We invite you to join If 7:14, the Newsboys, and the 2,000+ people who downloaded the app in the first weekend of the tour in unified prayer for revival for yourselves, your families, your churches and communities, and for America. Keep praying…it’s time!

If 714 prayer app SMALLTo download the free app to your Apple iPhone, click here now!

To download the free app to your Android device, click here now!

What makes this Summit so different?

FLS2016graphic498The 5th annual Family Leadership Summit may just be the most powerful, culture-impacting Summit yet.

Inspired, in part, by the exhortation to “think bigger” at the March 21 Holy Week Service at the Capitol, this year’s Summit boldly declares that our nation’s greatest hope lies not in our next human leader, but in God alone.

The “right person in office” isn’t going to fix America. Our problems are not just political, not just economic. No, America’s greatest need is spiritual. And politics aren’t going to fix that.

But God can.

Are you ready for a God-sized cultural transformation? So are we! Click here to join us at the 2016 Family Leadership Summit!

Let’s not sugarcoat the present reality. This election’s contentious political process has been an eye-opener for all of us. The public debate has been bitterly divisive. Our social media streams have been filled with vitriol. Our friends and respected leaders – many within the church! – have baffled us with their political alliances.

It’s not just the culture that’s been exposed as lost, broken, and undiscerning … the church has been exposed, too.

But at the same time, let’s not underestimate the redeeming power of God.

Throughout Scripture, we see that when God sets out to transform a culture – the very kind of transformational revival America needs most right now – He starts with the people called by His name.

In 2 Chronicles 7:14 God gives a template for seeking revival from His hand: “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

There’s no sin too big for God to forgive. No wound too big for Him to heal. And no nation too lost for God to revive. But if we’re to seek Him for that kind of revival, we must begin … with us.

And that’s where the 2016 Family Leadership Summit comes in.

Keynote speakers Anne Graham Lotz, T.C. Stallings of the movie “War Room,” and biblical worldview scholar Dr. Del Tackett of “The Truth Project” will equip, inspire, and encourage believers toward personal revival and working to ignite a sweeping, culture-wide revival in America and the world.


Together with If 7:14, the movement that is igniting a global rhythm of prayer for revival, the 2016 Family Leadership Summit is inspiring Christians to engage America – families, churches, society, and government – with the one Spirit can that bring true cultural transformation: God’s spirit of revival.

Have you downloaded the free If 7:14 prayer app yet?
Click here now!

The 2016 Family Leadership Summit is “thinking bigger” and putting first things first. We’re not looking for a political victory; we’re aiming for a cultural transformation. A national heart change that begins with you and me, our families, our churches, our government, and more.

Will you join us?


Grassley needs support, not condemnation

by Bob Vander Plaats

An Iowan is under ferocious and unwarranted national criticism right now, and he needs to hear our support, not misinformed condemnation.

Iowa’s U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley is not only well within his constitutional rights to refuse hearings on President Obama’s Supreme Court pick, he’s also taking a courageous stand to defend the best interests of our country.

Nowhere in the U.S. Constitution does it require the Senate to hold hearings on Obama’s nomination. Instead, it requires (in Article II, Section 2, Clause 2) that no appointment can be made without the Senate’s “Advice and Consent.”

Just as the president has the right to nominate, the U.S. Senate also has the constitutional right to advise the president to wait until after the election. It can also withhold its consent until then.

“So long as the Senate has established rules that allow it to refuse to vote on a nominee, it can do so,” wrote Ilya Somin, professor of law at George Mason University, in the Washington Post recently. “Blocking a Supreme Court nominee may be unwise … but it is not unconstitutional.”

Only in this case, it is wise.

President Obama has a history of nominating activist judges willing to trample sound constitutional reasoning to advance his agenda, and Grassley’s Republican colleagues in the Senate have a history of capitulating to these nominations. Sen. Grassley’s stand may well be the last line of defense against an effort to seismically shift the court and nation away from constitutional rule of law. Grassley should be commended for showing such singular backbone.

The American people should not be surprised, however, that Grassley is willing to take this stand. In 2010 Iowans sent a clear message that reverberated across the country condemning judicial activism. And yet we continue to see it. Through the Iowa Supreme Court’s recent “tele-med abortion” decision, for example, we witness judges usurping the people’s voice while ignoring the constitution’s separation of powers. Iowans have rejected these efforts to circumvent the will of the people through judicial activism before, and Grassley is defending our convictions now.

His Iowa leadership for the country should be applauded!

Without Grassley’s stand, however, a weak-willed Republican Senate might well confirm the current nominee, whom a New York Times panel of experts determined would be among the most radical justices on the court, to the left of even Justice Elena Kagan.

At this critical moment, when the erosion of religious liberty is barely one court decision away, when issues like life, marriage, gun control, health-care freedoms, parental rights and your personal property rights are hot-button issues sure to be appealed to the Supreme Court, America needs to put the brakes on Obama’s radical reshaping of the Court.

Sen. Grassley, it appears, understands those stakes.

So, Sen. Grassley, thank you for doing your constitutional job and advising that the people need to speak before any further appointments are constitutionally confirmed to the Supreme Court of the United States.

The previous was printed exclusively in the Des Moines Register Friday, April 8, 2016.

Watch the 2016 Family Leadership Summit now!

Audio of the breakout sessions now available! Click here!

About 1,000 people came to the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center in Des Moines, Iowa, to hear messages of hope and cultural transformation at the 2016 Family Leadership Summit.

Encouraged over and over that our hope is not in the 2016 election, nor the next Supreme Court case, but in God alone, those who came were inspired to take up our greatest weapon in the fight for our children’s future: prayer.

“We are on a path, as a society, of degradation and a failure to understand truth,” commented attendee Don Friend of Des Moines. “But there is hope. There is aboloutely hope, and our hope is in God. As the [Summit] stressed, all we have to do is turn to Him.”

Morning session speakers included Bob Vander Plaats, Dr. Del Tackett of The Truth Project, and Billy Graham’s daughter, author Anne Graham Lotz. Afternoon session speakers included Pastor Steven Khoury of Jerusalem and actor T.C. Stallings of the film “War Room.”* Several other speakers also presented breakout sessions that featured encouragement in areas of personal revival, such as health, marriage, and evangelism.

Watch the morning speakers here:

Bob Vander Plaats:

Dr. Del Tackett:

If 7:14:

Anne Graham Lotz:

Watch the afternoon speakers here:

*Due to contractual agreements with T.C. Stallings’ representatives, The FAMiLY LEADER Foundation was unable to record Stallings’ presentations.

Bryan English:

Pastor Steven Khoury:

TFL Capitol Team:

Thank you for watching, and please consider visiting www.if714.com and supporting the work of The FAMiLY LEADER today!

Breakout session audio now available!

The 2016 Family Leadership Summit included an element new to the Summits: breakout sessions! Eight different sessions gave attendees the opportunity to dive deeper into the topic or focus that most interested them.

The FAMiLY LEADER Foundation has heard nothing but positive feedback and praise over this new addition. The only drawback, of course, is that no one could attend all eight breakout sessions!

But now, we can make available the audio for several of those sessions at the links below.*

*Due to contractual obligations, we were unable to record T.C. Stallings’ breakout session, and Pastor Steven Khoury’s session cannot be rebroadcast because of internationally sensitive information that could jeopardize Christians in Israel.

Thank you for listening, and please consider visiting www.if714.com and supporting the work of The FAMiLY LEADER today!

Victory to celebrate: Protecting rape victims, their children

160331govsigningIowa Gov. Terry Branstad signed a law this morning making it easier for rape victims who become pregnant and deliver their babies to terminate the rapists’ parental “rights” in court.

Bringing together a wide, bipartisan coalition of support, HF 2386 helps prevent all-too-common situations where a rapist sues his former victim for the “right” to visit or even have partial custody of the child, bringing both mother and her baby into frequent contact with the man who traumatized her.

The law is an important reminder that in the battle to defend all unborn life, there is also an important responsibility to care for and defend mothers and their newborn children as well.

We’re grateful to the diverse team of people who shepherded this bill’s passage, including:

  • Republican Rep. Greg Heartsill
  • Democrat Sen. Steve Sodders
  • Tim Overlin of Personhood Iowa
  • Maggie DeWitte of Iowans for LIFE
  • Kim Laube of Lutheran Family Service
  • Rebecca Kiessling of Hope After Rape Conception
  • Amy Campbell of Iowa Coalition Against Sexual Assault
  • The members of The FAMiLY LEADER family advocate team.

Setting aside differences to work together for the good of mothers and rape victims is important, exemplary work.

Would you consider giving today to see more efforts like this supported in Iowa? Click here now to donate to The FAMiLY LEADER.

Don’t fall for it … your tax dollars DO pay for abortion

The Des Moines Register had a busy week recently, advocating for continued taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood.

But the paper’s poll, news article, column, and editorial all touting how much Iowans value their taxes paying the nation’s leading abortion provider left out some important details.

On Monday, March 21, the Register printed a letter from The FAMiLY LEADER Communications Director Drew Zahn, who filled in some of those missing facts. Though the Register also edited the letter, and thus diffused some of its impact, the original, full text can be read below:

A poll recently published by the Des Moines Register showing Iowans’ support for funding Planned Parenthood reveals too many Iowans still don’t understand how their taxpayer dollars actually fund abortions in Iowa.

Right now, Planned Parenthood of the Heartland, for example, receives over $4 million annually in state and federal taxpayer dollars through contracts Iowa’s elected officials could cancel, but haven’t.

And we don’t have to send this money to Planned Parenthood. There are over 200 other facilities in Iowa that provide the same family planning and health services, but without abortions. If this issue were really about women’s healthcare, we could fund those, instead of the nation’s largest abortion provider.

Many of our elected officials argue the $4 million isn’t spent on abortion procedures, but this is only a convenient half-truth.

The other half of the truth is that the millions of your dollars that abortionists receive are legally flexible in their use. Which means the money you believe is funding noble causes can just as easily pay the rent and utilities for a clinic where abortions are performed.

So you don’t pay for the abortion; you just pay for the building where the abortions happen. You don’t pay for the machine that dismembers babies’ bodies; you just pay for the electricity that runs the machine.

Regardless of the various programs Planned Parenthood touts to feed its budget on taxpayer dollars, our money should not be used to aid and abet abortion providers.

When literally hundreds of other non-abortive clinics in Iowa provide the same family planning and health services that Planned Parenthood’s 13 clinics in Iowa do, why are we sending the money to keep the lights on at the nation’s largest abortion mill instead?

Help spread the word! Share the link to this article above on Facebook! Post it on Twitter with the hashtag #DefundPP, and follow The FAMiLY LEADER on Twitter today by clicking here.

Iowa pastors issue challenge to lawmakers

As the Iowa Legislature considers a bill banning the sale of aborted baby body parts in our state, a long list of pastors has issued a letter, encouraging lawmakers to stand firm in support of it.

The letter is addressed to Republicans, who as the majority party in the House originally put the bill on the debate calendar and some of whom were the bill’s original co-sponsors:

Dear Republican House Members,

Last summer the nation watched in horror as undercover videos appeared of Planned Parenthood (PP) employees haggling over the sale of baby body parts and even more ghastly, a PP employee giving graphic details explaining the process for dismembering babies that still showed signs of life. For God-fearing citizens in “Christian” America it was a wakeup call. For PP it was just another day of doing what they have undoubtedly been doing for decades. That is the only explanation for their dismissive rebuttals to the video evidence which has now been verified as accurate.

It reminded me of my visit to Auschwitz a little more than a year ago where we were shown the house where the commandant lived with his wife and children within sight and one hundred feet of the barracks where thousands of innocent people were dying horrific deaths via the gas chamber every day. How did the commandant do it? There is only one answer. Like Nabal in the Old Testament, his heart had become like a stone. Unfortunately the PP videos reveal that there are such people in our midst today.

Now is the time for the Iowa House to move forward with HF2329, a bill that bans the sale and/or use of aborted baby body parts or bodies in whole. It is tragic that we as a society do not put an end to the murder of the innocent, and may God help us to never abandon that fight. In the meantime let us determine to make sure that Iowa never becomes a place where the bodies of aborted babies are treated as nothing more than a commodity to be used for research or experimentation, much less sold for profit.


Pastor Brad Cranston
Founder, Iowa Baptists for Biblical Values
Pastor, Heritage Baptist Church – Burlington
Director, Awake America State Capitol Initiative

…*along with…

Pastor Cecil Ballard – Grace Baptist Church – Marion
Pastor Earl Beal – Joy Baptist Church – Fort Madison
Pastor Jon Booth – Gateway Baptist Church – Clinton
Evangelist Gene Bray – Harvest Baptist Church – Mt. Pleasant
Pastor Joseph Brown – Marion Ave. Baptist Church – Washington
Pastor Matt Castle – Calvary Baptist Church – Waukon
Pastor Ralph Cole – Easton Baptist Church – Des Moines
Pastor Brad Cranston, Jr. – Heritage Baptist Church – Burlington
Pastor Josh Davenport – Unionville Baptist Church – Unionville
Pastor Travis Decker – Ottumwa Baptist Temple – Ottumwa
Pastor Kevin Dice – Round Prairie Baptist Church – Lockridge
Pastor Jeff Duffy – First Baptist Church – Yarmouth
Pastor Bill Eakins – Pleasant Valley Baptist Church – Bloomfield
Pastor Ken Koske – Twin Pines Baptist Church – Robins
Pastor Joshua Graber – Cornerstone Baptist Church – Vinton
Pastor Bill Graham – Grace Baptist Church – Marion
Pastor Ralph Harmon – Berean Baptist Church – Boone
Pastor Roger Hemming – North Court Baptist Church – Ottumwa
Pastor Ed Hannahs – Fellowship Baptist Church – Marshalltown
Pastor Ed Mast – Old Paths Baptist Church – Dubuque
Pastor Dan McCoy – First Baptist Church – Urbandale
Evangelist Randy Miller – Pleasantville Baptist Church – Pleasantville
Pastor Alan Miller – Heritage Baptist Church – Burlington
Pastor Rick Parcell – Harvest Baptist Church – Mt. Pleasant
Pastor AJ Potter – Pleasantville Baptist Church – Pleasantville
Pastor Dan Reid – Ottumwa Baptist Temple – Ottumwa
Pastor Tim Robbins – Calvary Baptist Church – Charles City
Pastor Michael Ryan – Pocahontas Baptist Church – Pocahontas
Pastor Bryant Sager – Pleasantville Baptist Church – Pleasantville
Pastor Paul Schaefer – Plymouth Bible Baptist Church – Plymouth
Pastor Terry Seney – New Testament Baptist Church – Arnolds Park
Pastor Marvin Smith – Harvest Baptist Church – Fort Dodge
Pastor Matt Sperling – Onawa Bible Baptist Church – Onawa
Pastor Gene Springer – Open Door Baptist Church – Council Bluffs
Pastor Micaiah Stanley – First Baptist Church – Seymour
Pastor Brian Tatman – Eastern Hills Baptist Church – Council Bluffs
Pastor Keeton Wainscott – Calvary Baptist Church – Waterloo
Pastor Darren Whiting – Liberty Baptist Church – Marion


Mr. Roger Meyer – Gospel Light Baptist Church – Marion
*Each endorsement was used by permission after the endorser received a copy of this particular email and gave their consent.

Links embedded in this letter:

1. VIDEO: “PROFIT” – Planned Parenthood’s Illicit Moneymaking From Baby Body Parts
2. VIDEO: Human Capital – Episode 3: Planned Parenthood’s Custom Abortions for Superior Product
3. Forensic analysis confirms Planned Parenthood undercover videos were not manipulated
4. Aerial picture of Auschwitz’s commandant’s home
5. HF2329 – An Act prohibiting certain actions regarding fetal body parts and providing penalties.

Holy Week kicks off at the Iowa Capitol

Before Easter Sunday, before Good Friday, before Maundy Thursday, Christians of different churches and denominations will be gathering on Monday, March 21, at the Capitol to proclaim our salvation is not found in presidents and kings, but in the King of Kings, the Lord Jesus Christ.

And you are invited to the west steps of Capitol (or indoors, if the weather is bad) for a time of public prayer, worship, and a message to refocus our hearts on the Lord Jesus Christ and remember what He ultimately did for us.

This Monday service will help Iowa start Holy Week off right and help the Capitol community reflect on Christ’s purchase of freedom for us all, once and for all, from sin and death. It is a message that transcends time, culture, class, and everything that divides us. It reminds us that no matter who we are, what we do, and where we live … we are all in need of Jesus’ saving grace.

Holy Week Service at the Capitol

  • Hosted by If 7:14, a prayer initiative of The FAMiLY LEADER
  • Worship music, prayer, and a message by Pastor Mike Housholder
  • Monday, March 21
  • 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
  • West steps of the Iowa State Capitol (alternative location inside for inclement weather)
  • Speakers: Mike Housholder, Lutheran Church of Hope, & Bob Vander Plaats, The FAMiLY LEADER

If 714 prayer app SMALLFor more information as it becomes available, including a bulletin insert you can pass out at your church, inviting others to come, visit the Holy Week Service at the Capitol event page.

And for more about If 7:14 and the free phone app that is uniting Christians in a global rhythm of prayer for revival, visit www.if714.org today!

Like never before: Iowa Christians get involved in government

2016 has been an unprecedented year for Christians engaging in their government in Iowa.

It began with the presidential caucuses, where Washington Post numbers suggest a record 121,500 evangelicals participated in the Republican caucuses alone – an increase of 50,000 over 2012.

But the increased and determined influence of Christians hasn’t stopped with presidential politics.

At the Iowa Capitol, over 150 pastors have already participated in the Capitol Project, which brings clergy to meet and pray with their legislators and get briefed on the major policy decisions being debated in Des Moines.

One group of pastors even witnessed a subcommittee hearing on legalizing doctor-assisted suicide in Iowa and took the time to testify against the bill on the spot! Thanks in part to their active involvement, the bill did not move forward. Christians really can make a difference when they get involved.


“I learned a lot,” said Jack Owens, a pastor at Cornerstone Church in Ames who attended one of the Capitol Project days.

“I had never been to the state Capitol building,” he confessed. “I had never even met one of my elected officials outside of a campaign speech. This is really eye opening to me and to find out we have believers, men and women here daily, trying to hold up the Word of God and influence our legislature … I was amazed.”

Pastor Mark Scott of Live, Love, Laugh Church in Des Moines also called the day “eye opening.”

“When you come to this place, you see the significance of your service,” he said. “When you come, you see that your voice makes a huge difference. We all as pastors need that. We need to know how significant we are and no matter what size of congregation we have, we represent a much larger part of the world.”

Through the course of this year’s legislative session, several hundred more pastors are expected, and your elected officials are increasingly depending upon pastors for prayerful encouragement as they serve in the Iowa Legislature.

Other tangible fruit of Christians engaging in their government includes the following:

  • A visit from Franklin Graham that drew in over 2,000 Iowans to the Capitol
  • Prayer at the Capitol every day of session from 9-10 a.m.
  • Year-round Tuesday noon prayer meeting
  • Bible study every Thursday morning from 7:30-8:00 a.m. during session
  • Holy Week church service scheduled for Monday, March 21
  • The entire Bible read aloud in the Rotunda in January
  • A state senator calling for a day of fasting and prayer prior to filing a difficult bill

It’s no wonder a legislator in Des Moines told us recently he feels the Capitol building is “ripe for revival.”

True revival, of course, is an act of God, humbling the hearts of the people and turning them back toward Himself. And revival is the same, whether in the home, the church, the society, or the government.

But just as revival in the family begins when God transforms one person and that person’s influence – like a flame – spreads to others, so too is our hope that God will stir a revival in His people that will spread to homes, churches and the halls of the Capitol.


Thank you, Christians of Iowa, for responding to call and being lit ablaze for the cause of Christ in your government!

Let us hope God will use such flames to ignite the very revival we pray for.

Discover how a free phone app is encouraging and equipping Christians to pray twice daily for revival around the world! Check out www.if714.org today!

“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens” – George Washington, in his 1796 Farewell Address

Reason to be worried: Obama tips hand on Supreme Court pick

160224USsupremecourtIn a blog post released Wednesday, President Obama offered what he called “spoiler-free insights” into who he will nominate to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia, a stalwart constitutionalist, on the U.S. Supreme Court.

Only, there are some spoilers in the post, and what they reveal is troubling.

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President Obama lists three criteria he says he will use in evaluating potential nominees. The first, that the candidate be “eminently qualified” with “a sterling record” of “excellence and integrity,” is exemplary. A bit vague, but commendable.

The second criterion, someone “who recognizes the limits of the judiciary’s role; who understands that a judge’s job is to interpret the law, not make the law” is almost right. The judge’s job is to apply the law, not come up with new “interpretations” according to some modern understanding, yet Obama is exactly right that the judiciary’s role is limited and absolutely excludes making laws.

Were Obama’s nominee to honor this role and refrain from the judicial activism we have seen in the Court over the last several decades, it would mark the very return to constitutional government that conservatives have been clamoring for and that will preserve American liberties.

Yet it’s natural to wonder where this criterion was when Obama nominated his last two picks.

Obama appointee Elena Kagan, in her confirmation hearings, openly admitted that amendments weren’t the only way to “change” the Constitution, but that Supreme Court justices could do it, too. And Obama appointee Sonia Sotomayor scoffed at the notion of “judicial activism,” arguing it doesn’t even exist. Yet the two justices’ record since reveals judicial activism is very much alive and well.

160224barackobamatallHas President Obama suddenly had a change of heart, or is this an empty platitude?

His third criterion for selecting a Supreme Court nominee, which Obama summarizes as “an understanding of the way the world really works,” reveals the troubling answer.

“But … there will be cases in which a judge’s analysis necessarily will be shaped by his or her own perspective, ethics, and judgment,” the president writes.

“Shaped by his or her own perspective,” Obama suggests, not shaped by the U.S. Constitution or the original intent of the Founders.

And to reach “fair outcomes,” Obama continues, the candidate he seeks must show he or she “grasps the way [the law] affects the daily reality of people’s lives in a big, complicated democracy, and in rapidly changing times.”

Obama’s words reveal the underlying progressive philosophy that the law must change to reflect our culture’s changing morals and values. And if judges have to alter our laws or Constitution, as Justice Kagan suggested, to fit our “rapidly changing times,” then so be it. This is the very definition of a liberal, activist judge and a complete contradiction of Obama’s second stated criterion.

Furthermore, Obama omits from his criteria even one reference to suggest judges be faithful to or adhere to the Constitution. It’s nowhere in there.

In fact, the only time Obama even mentions the Constitution in his blog post is when referring to his presidential duty to nominate someone and the Senate’s duty to debate and confirm his nominee.

If Obama’s selection process parallels his writing about the process, we should expect he’ll seek judges more concerned about how the law “affects people’s lives … in rapidly changing times” than about whether the law is constitutional or not. And if that’s his primary concern … America has every reason to be very concerned indeed.

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