So, I've wanted to post something along these lines for quite some time. It's something that weighs on my heart for more than one reason. I blogged it in my head last Friday as I walked, bawling, sinuses filling, not really able to take deep breaths as one should while walking up hills. I wish *you* could have been in my head because I don't know if this post will convey my heart that day, but I pray it does on many levels.
I don't support abortion, meaning, I personally would never have one and I don't think anyone else should either. I would love and support someone who had chosen that route or a person considering it as an option, but I would pray earnestly and do anything possible to encourage them that carrying their baby, regardless of circumstance, how the pregnancy came to be or what the prognosis of carrying a sick or dying child might entail, as long as physically possible, would be the most amazing, and heart-wrenching, life-changing, eye-opening, saddest and hopeful decision of their life.
Let me take you back in time to my 9th grade year. I was 15 years old. I loved God and knew He was drawing me closer to Him but didn't understand how that would look. I was actively involved in my CCD group and my local church. I knew I didn't think that terminating a pregnancy was a good thing so I decided to do something about it. I signed up to be part of a silent prayer walk in downtown Phoenix that went through the city and ended at the Capitol building. I remember praying quietly as we walked. I enjoyed talking to God so that part wasn't difficult for me. In retrospect, the part that was difficult for me were the posters the praying walkers held high in the air. Obviously. A terminated fetus is not a sight even the performing doctor or clinician should ever get used to. Yes, the point is to make an impression in the minds of the onlookers. Yes, people need to know the severity of what an abortion entails. But, thinking of the woman that everyone in town wanted to stone to death, I don't read anywhere that Jesus pasted a poster of her sins in front of her face to make her aware of her horrible choices. He said that if anyone was without sin, he should cast the first stone...funny that there was no one left standing. Jesus forgave her because He loved her. In hindsight, it is no wonder why men and women were shouting at the tops of their lungs, screaming at 'us' as we approached the Capitol. "It's my choice! It's my choice!" (MANY, NOT ALL, had a choice prior to having sex...) I don't recall being offended that they were offended, but I do remember thinking, as a 9th grader, that I was glad I got to pray and get a little exercise, but that what I had just done was the most ineffective effort in my life.
Now just BACK OFF anyone reading who has an elevated heart rate and angry opinions right now, labeling me as a 'Choicer'...Hopefully this post will make quite clear that my advocacy is for LIFE and LIFE alone. What I am saying is that what the people at the Capitol needed that day was not other people reminding them that abortion is a horrible thing. Science has convinced some minds that a fetus isn't a baby but hearts will always convince them otherwise, regardless of their choice. Instead, they needed encouragement and actual LOVE, support, HOPE, just sorta kinda like the way Jesus did things for any one given person in the Bible. I am an advocate for the sweet child living within an mother's womb.
If I had known that Noah was going to die when he was only 7 months and 2 days old, that 5 and a half months of his life were to be spent in a hospital with no answers, and that my heart would have ached for the remainder of my life missing him, longing to be his mommy on Earth rather than to a child in Heaven...if given the option to save myself the daily agony, I would still have chosen to have Noah, every day just the same. I am richer for knowing him. How could I not be?
I have several friends that were told that the baby they so lovingly carried within them was either: no longer alive, not going to live outside the womb for more than a short amount of time, or had either a fatal birth defect or rare genetic disorder that meant death in no uncertain terms. Each friend cried. Each friend trusted God for a miracle this side of Heaven. Each woman carried her child as long as her body physically was able. Some had to say goodbye quickly to their child. Some have bouncing babies living on earth today. In ALL cases, each woman was blessed beyond her imagination, even in her agony of the unknowns and in her grief, just from allowing herself to love her unborn child and trust God more deeply. She allowed her life to become a richer place, like soil that has to be overturned with added manure, to make a proper environment for new life to begin. Each learned more about love from their sweet child. Each has taught me so much.
The past is the past. I am not condemning women who have had abortions. I know that some loving mothers wanted their babies desperately. Some chose it out of convenience, or inconvenience, for their lifestyle. Those I don't condemn but I will boldly call selfish and, quite frankly, immature. They thought by having an abortion it would free them up for the life they intended. The irony is that when a child of God enters someones womb, they are beautiful and perfect in God's eyes. They are willing vessels to be used for His glory. They are ready to teach anyone willing to be taught.
Scripture says that "Children are a blessing from the Lord." Some would interpret that as people who have healthy, living children are blessed, but those who are unable to conceive or choose not to, are not. That is such rubbish! Just because the psychos down the street have children does not mean they are blessed! The kids themselves are blessings, and unfortunately ignorant, unloving, hateful people have reproductive organs, too! Children come into families in many ways, shapes and forms! They can come from your womb or someone else's, but they are the blessing, the actual child is the BLESSING! YES! One of my many points here is that the person who allows their heart to be transformed by a child is blessed, as well!
The choice is not whether a person should or should not continue a pregnancy! What it boils down to is whether a person is willing to embrace heartache and hope, love and despair, pain and joy all at once simply by allowing the sweet little life growing in them the amount of days ordained by God. I am not going to blow sunshine at anyone and say it is easy to love deeper than you ever dreamed possible and then hurt so badly that your heart physically aches in your chest. Daily. No. Losing a child sucks. It totally sucks, regardless of the amount of time in seconds, minutes, hours, or days. Yes, you will forever be the people on the block that lost a child. You will walk into public places and have urges to announce that your child died, that you miss him every moment of every day, and that you think it should at least merit a free latte, unlimited speeding tickets, unlimited emotional chocolate binges or a free tank of gas every time you say so! But more realistically, you will have grief attacks when you least expect it, you will be reminded of things and wonder what your child would be doing at such and such an age...you will never forget. If that is what some women who have abortions think they will avoid by choosing to end their child's life, they can forget it because forgetting won't ever happen. Forgetting is not an option. That child still existed and whether you think you allowed your heart to be affected or not, it was...what I want to encourage you to do is allow that child to fully affect your life for its intended amount of time...you will be in awe of the depth of love you will know. If anyone can name one woman on earth who chose abortion and came out emotionally unscathed then you can scratch everything written here...it's not possible.
I'm having a very difficult time putting into words the ones that flowed freely in my heart last Friday morning. Why I didn't sit down at the computer when I got home...well, let's see, I'm a SAHM, I can think of a million reasons. Anyway.
If you have had an abortion, God loves you dearly, just as He does every other person on this earth. He made you, He loves you, and He desires to heal you. He also forgives you if you will allow your heart to admit it needs healing. He is gracious. He is tender. He is not carrying a poster with your sins in red ink down the street for all to see. He isn't strapped to a bomb outside an abortion clinic. He loves you and desires to be known by you.
If you are considering to terminate your pregnancy because you have been given a death prognosis for your child, as painful as that reality is, I implore you to know that your child will be healthy in Heaven, waiting for you one day. In the meantime, allow yourself to love more deeply than is fathomable. You will not regret the power of that choice.
If you are considering an abortion because your pregnancy doesn't fit conveniently into your lifestyle, life is not all about you. It's not. No, it's not all about you...BUT, it can be all about you changing to be a selfless person...
My heart is this...a child, regardless of the number of days in your womb, or the shortened days on this earth, is a gift from God because anyone who meets that sweet baby, if they allow themselves to love freely, will never be the same. And there are a lot of people, myself included, that could really stand to never be the same out there...
Each child, even if their prognosis is no life outside the womb, deserves to be carried for as long as their mom's loving body will hold them. Yes, your heart will be wrecked because you may have to say goodbye to your baby, the one you painted the nursery for, the one you longed to read stories to, the very one you thanked God for when you found out you were pregnant, or the same one that began growing in you, not by your choice, but by force! I'm not saying any of these scenarios are easy! The reality is, healing from your brokenness will start the moment you allow your shattered heart to love that little life growing in you. It may take a lifetime to realize the profound impact your choice to carry that dying child in your womb had on you, but you will never be the same...and for most of us, that isn't a bad thing...
(Yes, I was on a lonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnggggggggggggg walk...)