Heart of the Matter – Please, Please Don’t
Having looked into the tearful eyes of parents whose children have abandoned the faith, I have learned that there are a million miles between our children “going through the motions” in reference to their spiritual life versus our children possessing a heart that dictates their actions. In this column I hope to share with you what I hope to instill in the hearts of my own children and those whom I love.
Most of us know someone—even if we really do not know about “it” firsthand. It may be a high school classmate who “got into trouble” at the tender age of sixteen. Or it may be a coworker who was climbing the corporate ladder. Or it may even be the person sitting in the same pew with you on Sunday morning. Rare is the congregation in which at least one member has not had an abortion. Sometimes the secret is shared with close friends, ; other times, it is literally taken to the grave. Having talked to several women (and even a couple of men) who made this “choice” I realize that it is often a decision made under great stress—and a decision that can leave scars for life.
Here’s what I intend on teaching my children about abortion.
With the exception of Claire, I had the pleasure of watching each one of you enter this world and take your first breaths—and I only missed Claire by two hours. (And yes, I am strongly considering making her wait on me two hours before walking her down the aisle, since she just couldn’t wait!) Each time we discovered we were expecting, your mother and I would quietly wonder, “Can we do this?” As our family grew, we wondered “Can we love another one as much?” The answer to both questions was a resounding “Yes!” Our love just continued to grow as our family grew. Now we cannot envision a world without each one of you. It is my prayer that you too will one day know the joy of being a father or mother. Our family is one of the deepest sources of happiness we know, topped only by the knowledge of our salvation through Jesus Christ.
While your mom and I have big plans for your future—including your impact and influence on His church—we are not so naïve as to think that those plans will unfold without a few hiccups and hurdles along the way. If the plans get brushed aside, please don’t throw away the entire blueprint! Paul, in writing about the “plan” for younger widows, observed: “I desire that the younger widows marry, bear children, manage the house,…” I hope you will always keep that divinely laid down order in mind. We are to marry first, and then have children. However, if that plan is lost due to a moment of passion please come to us. Please, please don’t have an abortion or consent to one.
Never try to correct a mistake by making another one, and please do not counsel anyone else to do likewise. Far too many people find themselves in a situation situations in which they are unexpectedly pregnant and they feel the only answer is to abort the child. Without question, abortion stops a beating heart—just 18 days after conception, the baby’s heart begins to beat. You do not want to spend the rest of your life with emotional scars, always thinking “What if…” I promise you that, with Christ, we can get through it, together (Philippians 4:13). Never ever forget that we love you and you can always come to us!
Would your mom and I be humbled? Absolutely. Would it hurt? Definitely. But would we forgive you and help you turn a wrong into a right? Without question! Remember you can repent of your sins and ask for forgiveness, and God will forgive you (1 John 1:7-10). In fact, if this were to happen, I would hope that you would then one day have the courage to use your own experience to teach others.
Since your birth, we have tried to remind you that humans are different from the animals. We were made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26-27). Every living human has been instilled with a soul (see James 2:26; Ecclesiastes 12:7). Please do not ever consider ending a life prematurely—rather allow us to help you train up that child so that one day it can grow up to become a child of God. Think about that tiny soul lodged in that little unborn child. Abortion is an abomination to God, and I hope you never forget that.