Just in case you are unfamiliar with Kim Davis, she is the Rowan County clerk from Kentucky who spent six days in jail after refusing to issue same sex marriage licenses. The story reached the mainstream media several weeks ago and has done anything but died down.
News broke Wednesday that Pope Francis met with Davis Thursday, September 24, during his celebrated visit to the States. After receiving a surprise phone call from the Vatican, Davis and her husband Joe traveled to Washington, D.C. and met with the Pope at the Vatican Embassy.
The meeting was kept under wraps for nearly a week. Father Benedettini from the Vatican Press office released a statement this week saying, “I do not deny that the meeting took place, but I will not comment on it further."
Sunday night, a news reporter questioned the Pope about whether he supports individuals who claim religious liberty as a reason to disobey the law. He responded:
I can't have in mind all the cases that can exist about conscientious objection, but, yes, I can say that conscientious objection is a right that is a part of every human right. It is a right. And if a person does not allow others to be a conscientious objector, he denies a right.
He further clarified, "It is a human right and if a government official is a human person, he has that right. It is a human right.”
Davis said the Pope’s support was a great encouragement to her. Before they parted last Thursday, he urged her to “stay strong” – words that will surely resonate with Davis as she faces still more difficult challenges.
The day after her meeting with the Pope, Davis received the Family Research Council’s “2015 Cost of Discipleship Award” at the Values Voters Summit in D.C., co-sponsored by AFA.
She has won the support of presidential candidates, been spotlighted by an almost endless stream of media outlets, and has appeared live on national networks such as FOX, ABC, and CNN.
Receiving such an extraordinary amount of media attention must be exciting for a country girl from Morehead, Kentucky.
But that’s not why she’s my hero.
Davis became my hero when I watched her interview on The Kelly File on the Fox News network – and not because she made it to Megyn Kelly’s hot seat, but because of what she said once she got there.
As I watched, I was inspired by her faithfulness and overwhelmed by her love for Jesus Christ. I was intrigued and encouraged by her paradoxical measure of meekness and strength. I look at Kim Davis and think, “That’s what I want to be.”
Davis is not just some troublemaker trying to make it to the limelight. I learned from the interview with Kelly that Davis was proactive in her approach. She started writing legislators asking for accommodations for county clerks months in advance of the Supreme Court’s decision on same sex marriage.
During that same interview, Kelly reminded Davis of plentiful accusations: “You too are a sinner, you were married four times – twice to the same man – but divorced three times … you had an affair while married … you had children out of wedlock … Who are you to judge others?”
Davis responded, “I’ve not judged anybody.” She paused, looked down, and raised her eyes to say with confidence, “I have … [given] my life to Christ. I have been redeemed by the blood of Christ. And that’s available to anybody … [who] wants that. My sins are forgiven. They are thrown into a sea of forgetfulness from the time I gave my life to Him.”
This is where the applause, cheering, and jumping up and down happened within me! That was when Kim Davis became my hero!
And I absolutely love that God chose a woman much like that Samaritan woman at the well (John 4:1-42) to tell the whole world about its Savior! Who has received a more extensive platform from which to share the message of Jesus Christ this year? Anyone?
Wow! God did that! Great is His faithfulness!
I’m reminded of the words attributed to Mother Theresa and often repeated by AFA founder Don Wildmon: “God didn't call me to be successful. He called me to be faithful.”
Kim Davis may not be successful by the world’s standards. But Kim Davis has been faithful.