Tears fell, and laughter and music rang out during A Night of Worship and Testimony with Mark Schultz on Thursday, August 18. Shoulders and heads swayed, and the lyrics of Remember Me resonated not only throughout the church sanctuary but also in the hearts of everyone who attended the benefit concert sponsored by LifeBeat Family Resource Center.

While the stage at Second Baptist Church in Union City, TN, served as a backdrop for the event, Schultz had a way of making you feel like you were front and center in his very own stories, all of which gave insight into his reason for writing a particular song and a deeper understanding of his lyrics.

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He also had the ability to make you reflect on your own contribution to LifeBeat's cause; that is, to save the lives of women and children. His impassioned plea for support for the organization came from his gratitude toward the pregnancy crisis center that helped save his own life. 

Even though Schultz's birth mother gave him up for adoption, he credits her as his hero because she made the decision to give him life. At just two weeks old, he was adopted into a loving family, and as an adult, he and his wife have continued along the adoption path by growing their family of four into six.

While there were certainly big fans of Schultz present at the concert, motives for attending the event went beyond great music and storytelling. Some attendees were there out of the desire to support LifeBeat's cause and help them raise the money they needed to purchase a mobile pregnancy clinic. Others wanted to celebrate the work the organization does because of a personal impact from an unplanned pregnancy. 

Maureen Pagan of Dyersburg drew on her own experience while explaining her reason for attending. She said, "There have been unexpected pregnancies in my family, both for my sister and me. I want to support life as much as possible, so when I saw the opportunity, I just had to come."

Chuck and Rachel Graham, pastors of Willingham Memorial Baptist Church in Ridgely, chose to attend because they are passionate about LifeBeat's work. Rachel said, "It's a wonderful cause, [and we want] to do all we can to help."

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Schultz hopes the event triggers the desire to get involved. He said that sharing the particulars of his family and their story and emphasizing that half of his family is adopted will hopefully raise awareness, [help LifeBeat] raise money, and encourage people to volunteer. He said, "Once you open your arms and say, 'I'm in' to God's story, you write a much bigger story, and that's what [this ministry] is writing here."

Dee Keeling, Director of LifeBeat, hopes those who attended the event will understand how precious life is and see the direct impact adoption has on families. She encourages girls and women to visit both Crossroads Women's Clinic and the mobile clinic that will soon be in operation. "LifeBeat is a place where [you] can feel loved and supported, not condemned. We're here to help," she said.

The ministry's services extend beyond free healthcare for women to counseling for men in the community. Schultz hopes that men can look at an unplanned pregnancy through a different lens. He encourages men to think about what they can give instead of what they can get out of a situation, a practice he implements with his boys. He suggests looking at things from all perspectives, including that of the baby and the mother. "Then, be a man. Think about how [you] can serve and how [you] can give and be led that way,” he said.

Funds raised through the benefit concert helped LifeBeat meet its goal of purchasing a mobile pregnancy clinic, which has since been named Hope. It should be ready as early as December of this year. However, donations are still needed to purchase a mobile ultrasound machine and to help maintain the unit, medical supplies, medical insurance, and medical team, whose hours on the job will soon increase.

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