October 28, 2011 (40DaysforLife.org) – Today’s story is not one you’d hear every day.

Two years ago this month, former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johnson experienced a conversion after witnessing a live abortion on an ultrasound at her office in Texas.

She walked into my office at the Coalition for Life next door, told me her story, then resigned from the abortion industry.

I had known Abby for eight years before that day and I’d had multiple conversations with her through the fence outside Planned Parenthood. But after her conversion, I realized how much I didn’t know.

I didn’t know that her parents were pro-life and had been praying for her to leave Planned Parenthood.

I didn’t know her husband was pro-life and her job created tension in their family.

I didn’t know that before Abby saw that ultrasound, even she was starting to see that Planned Parenthood cares more about abortion than anything else.

We don’t know what God is doing behind the scenes. We must trust, we must pray — and we must know that our witness on the sidewalk is always part of a larger picture.

Here’s a story that shows what I mean. I’m not revealing names and locations, and I’ve changed some details. This is still a work in progress!

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A vigil participant was noticing that nearly all the cars in the abortion center parking lot were parked in the staff area — very few were in the area reserved for those with appointments. And that was good.

The volunteer was soon deep in prayer when the abortionist drove up — with his wife and their teenager. He got out of the car and headed toward the building while the wife and teen drove away.

The abortionist’s wife pulled up next to the vigil participant, rolled down her window and asked, “How are you doing?” The surprised volunteer answered, “Good! How about you?”

She responded, “I just wanted to tell you that I so appreciate what you do and how you are always so nice and respectful.” That simple response turned out to be the opening line in a very lengthy conversation.

The wife expressed her gratitude for the way the 40 Days for Life vigil is conducted. In another city, there is a group outside the abortion center that yells at her husband.

Here, however, he’s been told that the vigil participants are praying for him. “He just can’t understand how you can be so against what he does and yet so nice to him.”

She explained that her husband grew up in a home that had no use for religion — the concept is totally foreign to him. The volunteer promised to pray that he would be able to grasp — and eventually embrace — faith. The teen blurted out, “Please do!”

“I asked the abortionist’s wife to pray for me,” said the volunteer, “and she said she would.”

The wife said, “I’m really impressed that you believe in something so strongly and passionately that you’re willing to be here every week for years in every kind of weather.”

“There is much to meditate upon from this conversation,” said the 40 Days for Life volunteer. “It confirmed the constant presence, the peaceful method, the prayerful attitude. It helped give me a renewed sense of dedication to continually trying to get people to sign up so that we can have a constant presence on the sidewalk. We never know who will see us and when they will see us.

“God gave me an awesome story in order to ask once again for you to join us for 40 Days for Life. Please keep praying for an end to abortion and for ALL those involved. God is using us to help bring His children to Him — ALL of them!”

Reprinted with permission from 40DaysforLife.org