August 2017 Ministry Update

BY TAKING AN OFFENSIVE STANCE, PHOTOGRAPHER GETS WIN!

Wisconsin photographer and blogger Amy Lawson, fearing potential financial ruin from the city of Madison and the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, filed suit against both in March after a customer complaint.

By taking an active position in pressing the issue of refusing to photograph so called “same-sex weddings,” Lawson was able to get the court to agree that as a website-based business she is not controlled by the city and state “public accommodation” restrictions on sexual orientation.

Dane County Circuit Court Judge Richard Neiss ruled that Lawson could freely exercise her First Amendment rights through her artistry . . . to a point. Judge Neiss claimed that because Amy Lynn Photography Studio has no physical storefront it cannot be forced to offer its services against conscience. However, if Lawson were to open a brick-and-mortar presence in the city, she would be vulnerable to the $500-a-day fines if she did not violate her Christian beliefs in her photography.

While this protects Lawson’s specific business concern in the short term, and we thank God for His favor in this case, the larger constitutional issue remains for state and local laws across the nation that violate Christians’ First Amendment right to free exercise of religion.

Please join us in fighting for the rights of all Christians to keep from being bullied and punished in thecourtroom, legislatures, town councils, and elsewhere. We should not be surprised by how society treats Christians: “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.” John 15:18-19 (KJV)

But we should fervently pray for God’s protection and continue being a winsome, bright light to the world by standing for the Truth of the Bible in all circumstances: “We ought to obey God rather than men.” Acts 5:29 (KJV)

Together, we can celebrate this partial victory as we press on in our battle to defend and proclaim God’s gracious gift of inalienable rights.

With your financial and prayer support, the National Center for Life and Liberty helps Christians in the church, the marketplace, the classroom, and in the home shine brighter without fear.

Thank you for being a close friend and partner with the NCLL. Please join us in praying this month for the following concerns so that we may give God the glory in all we think, say, and do in loving our neighbors as ourselves.

PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • Pray for a ministry that has been falsely labeled as a hate group by a law center because it holds traditional Christian values and beliefs.
  • Pray for a Christian organization that has been denied access to certain services offered by Google because it is a religious organization.
  • Pray for employees of the state of Florida who have been disciplined because of their religious beliefs.
  • Pray for a church worker who contacted the NCLL for guidance on reporting abuse. The NCLL works with churches to make sure that child abuse is reported and that ministry best practices are in place for reporting abuse.
  • Pray for a faith-based practitioner who is expecting to receive charitable contributions to fund her work.
  • Pray for a Christian leader who was seriously injured and is now seeking compensation from the responsible party.
  • Pray for a ministry that has been denied access to the marketplace due to its faith-based stand on biblical morality.
  • Pray for Supreme Court cases that will affect our religious and individual constitutional freedoms.
  • Pray for Congress as they work on the healthcare bill and other legislation that affects life and liberty in our nation.
  • Pray for the upcoming 2017 NCLL Church Legal-Health Seminars. Each year the NCLL trains thousands of ministry leaders by providing tools and resources to maximize ministry opportunities and minimize liability.
  • Pray for an affirmation of religious liberty next term when the Supreme Court hears the case of a baker whose religious convictions did not permit him to bake a cake for a same-sex marriage.
  • Pray that Congress will enact a new health care program for America that will allow citizens to control their own health care and purchase the insurance plans they prefer. We recently saw with baby Charlie Gard in England what can happen when the government controls access to insurance and health care.
  • Praise the Lord that a judge ruled in favor of a Christian school and is requiring families to pay several years of tuition that had fallen in arrears. The NCLL recommends that Christian schools only carry students for a maximum of two months when families fail to make tuition payments.