With the recent legislative events in New York and Virginia the abortion conversation has ramped up to a fever pitch. This is not unusual; the conversation has waxed and waned for decades, and nothing much seems to change, except that we are increasing the age at which babies can be aborted.
Everyone is on one side or the other; either you are for abortion – or you are against it. Some try to straddle the fence with statements like, “only in certain cases”. I know that fence. There was a time in my life when I tried to sit on it; but it was not comfortable.
In my attempt at compromise, I rationalized that abortion could sometimes be the humane, compassionate, and perhaps necessary solution to an extremely difficult problem. However, after much thought, Bible study, prayer, and numerous conversations with broken women who had succumbed to insurmountable pressure and chosen abortion, I realized I needed to plant my feet firmly in the Pro-Life arena. I choose life.
Arena is the right word, too, because as soon as you identify yourself as Pro-Life you are in for a fight! The questions never stop! What if there is simply no money to raise the child? What if the child is the result of rape? or incest? What if the mother cannot emotionally handle motherhood? What if the child is born into a drug addicted hell hole of a life? What if the baby has some terrible illness? What if the baby is not wanted?
What if? What if? What if? What are you going to do to help this mother and her baby dig out of whatever desperate situation they were in that abortion, killing a child, seemed like a good idea? What now?
There is no way that one person can make a difference in all of those what ifs – only God can, and God often does. God is the giver of life, and understands all of the hardships of life. He knows what is best for every baby, and every mother. He knows when the brokenness of an unplanned pregnancy is the best path to lead a woman to seek him for rescue. And he never abandons the bruised reed, or the smoldering ember who turns to him.
God also knows when a woman prefers to escape her circumstances, or the consequences of her choices. He often does not intervene when a mother chooses to end her baby’s life. God knows what is, what will be, and he alone knows what might have been had every aborted child been allowed to live.
Every mother who chose to abort her baby will stand before God for what she did. Fortunately, God is a forgiving and loving God. He hates sin, and I believe abortion is a sin, but God loves every sinner, and he welcomes every repentant person into his loving arms with complete forgiveness. He promises us that when we confess our sin, he is faithful and just to forgive our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness – 1 John 1:9
And, I also believe that every person who fights for the life of a baby, will stand before God for what they are, or are not, doing to help those mothers with their babies. When I took a stand for Pro-Life, I was confronted with the challenge: Are you Pro-Life, or are you merely Pro-Birth? Do you really care about the mother, the baby, and their future, or do you just hate abortion? The real question I was being asked was: If you ask her not to abort her baby… then what?
In other words: If you are Pro-Life, do you not also have a responsibility to help with the life that was spared? Yes. All Christians do. We are called to serve one another humbly in love – and that means help the mom who chose to give life to her child.
There are a number of ways in which we can help these precious mothers and their babies – and one I’m particularly involved with is Teen Mother Choices (TMC) https://www.tmcint.org/. This was the program that got my attention twenty-one years ago with a poster in a hallway at church that simply stated, “You asked her not to abort her baby – now what?”
Now what? Every single one of us must ask ourselves that question – now what? She listened to you, she had the baby – now what? She wants to finish school – now what? She needs childcare – now what? She has no income – now what? She is a child herself – now what?
Over the past two decades, along with many other men and women in TMC, I’ve had the privilege of helping to answer some of those questions for young moms who chose to parent their babies rather than terminate their pregnancies. There are many TMC classes around the country, and they continue to come alongside young moms – moms who chose life – to help them find their hope, future and purpose in Christ Jesus.
I have the very real blessing of being asked to help TMC celebrate their 30th anniversary in March – and I want to invite all of you to come (ticket information here) especially if you are a Pro-lifer who has heard the question: What now?
Pro-Lifers, I ask you, what are you doing to support the lives you want to protect?
And, to every woman who chose abortion – no matter how long ago you made a very difficult choice that you perhaps now regret – God is a redeemer, he takes our heartaches and uses them for his good purpose. He takes our brokenness and makes us whole in his love. He forgives. He renews. He loves. He is waiting for you. Please contact me if you would like to discuss how Jesus can help you.
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Marcia’s book, 365 Days of Grace — is currently available on any of the following links: