Today I'm using our adoption blog as a platform to truly express my thoughts on the Pro-Life movement as prompted by the March for Life happening in Washington D.C. today.
I know. We've been SO silent! We took a break from fundraising in December and January, and put our heads down to really focus and plow through the remaining steps of our home study. We'll jump on Facebook Live the beginning of February to give you all some updates as well an announcement of our next fundraiser! Thanks for sticking with us.
The pro-life movement has always hit close to home for me. Literally. My grandpa was a core piece of starting the pro-life movement in California way back in the day. I have childhood memories of standing on the side of the road with a sign held high, playing with the models of babies at different gestational periods (they were still babies that could be dressed and put in my toy stroller!), and knowing from as young as I could understand—life began at conception.
While the most effective method of communicating life and standing up for the unborn is disputable, I've found that it is indeed something I MUST stand up for. Every story of abortion that moves me to tears (for both the mother and the child), every bit of hopelessness and defeat I see in women's eyes who are faced with unplanned pregnancies, and every fleeting thought of the 4 in 10 abortions happening in our very own country every single day... more than sorrow, it moves me to ACT. To stand up. To try to help people understand that while we all have the freedom of choice (which is from God), we can't make it legal to choose DEATH. Murder. Just as I can't freely choose to shoot my neighbor, I can't freely choose to kill the child inside of me.
"But you don't know what it's like to face an unplanned pregnancy, especially one that occurs from incest and rape." You're so right. I do not. And in all honesty, if I had no support system and I became pregnant by a man who I didn't know, and caused me extreme pain... I would try to think of how I could sweep it all under the rug. How I could remove the pain, the reminder, the horror.
But thankfully, my God is bigger than that. Thankfully I have full faith in a God that orchestrates everything in life to happen for the good of those that love Him. Sin, evil in this world is not caused by Him. It's a repercussion of US. We're the fallen ones. And it's a miracle (that I thank God for every day) that He tirelessly forgives us over, and over, and over again. So amidst the evil, I'm blessed to be able to rise above it and see the good. To know that God has me in his hands, no matter what. And with that, I'm certain I'd make the right choice—that I'd either choose to parent my child or choose adoption for my child.
But that doesn't go without understanding the woman sitting in the abortion clinic, waiting for her name to be called. Society says it's okay. All the feelings of fear and injustice say it's okay. And without the bigger-picture story of God's perfect plan for our lives—it looks and feels okay.
But it's a life. Separate from your own. And it's not okay to take it.
But to those that have chosen abortion... God forgives. God heals. God knows your pain and your desire for restoration, and offers it to each and every woman with no strings attached.
Every morning, during my quiet time, I think of our expectant mom, the birth mom of Baby C. I sometimes wonder where she is and what she's facing. The other morning I pictured her feeling the weight of desperate hopelessness as she found out she was pregnant. Or the moment she very well might be sitting in the waiting room of a Planned Parenthood, now knowing where to turn. But then I also think of her in that moment she decides to choose adoption for her child. The pain, the weight of knowing she'll carry her child for 9 months... oh, the bravery. It moves me to tears to think about it. So I do the only thing I can do since I can't wrap my arms around her (yet)—I pray for her. I pray God will wrap His loving arms around her, and that she'll be able to breathe in deep... GRACE.
Now for a few practical NOTES:
There IS help outside of Planned Parenthood.
So many people think that PP is the be all and end all of "women's reproductive care." You know why it appears to be that way? Because it's what's being promoted all around us. And this is what frustrates me more than anything. Guess what?
In our city, we have ONE Planned Parenthood, but TWO pregnancy centers. These pregnancy centers provide:
- Free contraceptives (gasp!)
- Free pregnancy tests
- Free ultrasounds
- Free STD/STI testing
- Free counseling, support groups, and Bible studies
- Free prenatal care
- Free items to help care for your baby (from diapers to cribs)
- Free parenting programs
- Free resources to adoption agencies
- Free resources for job and housing assistance
And they ARE in our schools, educating our kids about safe sex. They ARE passing out condoms. And at the same time they're counseling. They're meeting kids in the halls to talk about tough times and unplanned pregnancies. Their work is astounding. Why aren't we all supporting THEM? Because they don't offer ONE thing. They don't offer the option ("the choice") of abortion.
Probably the most popular (and accusatory) rebuttle to pro-life activism is this: "You care for a baby inside the womb, but won't care for children outside the womb!"
I get it. You can't value life at conception and not fight for the child after they're born. But this blanket statement of all pro-life supporters is simply naive.
First, MANY (if not all) pregnancy centers offer post-birth support. Our local pregnancy center offers parenting classes, a donations closet that moms can access and take from it what they need, and one-on-one counseling (for both mom AND dad).
Here are some organizations that are actively working in our communities to provide support to moms after the birth of their baby:
And of course, there's US, taking to the streets. Address the issues of homelessness, research ways to support single, low-income mothers in your area, and recognize that fighting for the child in the womb continues outside of it.
We still have a long way to go... but it's still no excuse to end life in the womb.
My position isn't a popular one.
It's one that kept me from marching around with my fellow women in a historical march. It's one that makes other women look at me in disgrace for being "anti-choice." But my standards aren't the same as the world's standards. My standards, as a Christ follower, are God's standards—and I take that pretty seriously.