Pro-Life Vs. Pro-Pregnancy

What does it mean to be pro-life? This would seem simple enough. The description ideally would be self-explanatory from the name itself. I have found that this term has been dragged through the mud and become rather devoid of any real substance in a lot of circles today. Some define pro-life in the negative. It is the view that fights against abortion. Most define it solely on the unborn child. It is limited to one specific category. What many people define as pro-life is really only called pro-pregnancy.

Let me say from the start that I do not agree with abortion. I believe life begins at conception. I believe God is involved in the process of creating each individual just as he was in the process of creating Adam and Eve. I also recognize that many times due to sin entering the world that this joyous occasion can become a hardship. Physical and mental disabilities, the abuse of a husband, rape, etc. all complicate matters. I also believe in grace. I believe that women who have aborted a child are still capable of receiving grace and mercy from God. They can still receive healing. They still deserve love, counseling, and care.

Being pro-life requires admitting the hardships of raising a child. Teen pregnancy isn’t going away. This is not to say we shouldn’t still teach abstinence in a healthy context. Obviously we should, but we need to realize it will not eliminate the problem. Therefore, a solution needs to be developed for when teen pregnancy happens. There is an all too common story that happens for young unwed mothers. A girl gets pregnant and bravely decides to keep the baby. Make no mistake, this is an act of bravery. Doing what it is right and honoring by God is brave. It will require sacrifice. We are willing to say following God in all other areas will require sacrifice. Choosing life is no different.

The young woman chooses life and proceeds with the help of her parents to raise her child, finish school, and work to provide for the child. Given the difficulties she isn’t able to attend church regularly. When she does she is at best met with distant stares. Some might tell her they thought she pursued a life of drugs after having the child since she stopped attending church. That is not a pro-life view. That is a pro-pregnancy view. It is also an incredibly destructive view.

I once knew a church that had a young girl who got pregnant due to rape. It was a horrendous situation for the girl. A situation where our culture would not have scorned her for an abortion. The church adopted a pro-life view. They loved on this woman. They help meet her needs. They helped with the financial strife. They provided support for the entire family. They did what a church is supposed to do. They saw a woman who bravely took on the responsibility of caring for a child, and didn’t leave her in the dust.

Let’s go back to that first scenario of the young woman working to provide for her child. What if people recognized the difficulty of raising the child? What if rather than giving remarks of judgment there was instead an act to help meet her needs. Need a break for an evening? Let me watch your kid for you. Can’t come to church because of work? Let me sacrifice time out of my week that works for you so I can come over and have a Bible study with you to give you a little bit of Christian community.

You see, pro-life is not merely the care for the unborn child. It is the caring for the physical and spiritual needs of the mother as well. It is striving to help raise the child in world where they will know God’s love. Pro-life extends before and after the unborn child.

Here is the simple truth, and it might be painful to hear. I know it was painful for me to realize at one point. If you agree with abortion you cannot call yourself pro-life. If you do nothing to care for the physical and spiritual needs of a child and their parents you also cannot call yourself pro-life. It’s time for us to recognize the hardship that comes with choosing life, and do all we can to help lift that burden as a community. It’s true that society’s answer to this problem through abortion is not the right solution, but we need to provide the Scriptural alternative. Anything less is just pro-pregnancy, and that’s not even a shadow of pro-life.

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Some Thoughts on Abortion

I have been on vacation for the past week. It has been a good time with my family to just get away. On Wednesday I woke up early with my wife. We went onto the beach to watch the sunrise. I like this time. It gives me the opportunity to usually clear my head. There has been a great deal going on in the world that has required some of that for me lately.

I’ve been strangely quiet on social media over the Planned Parenthood situation. I have been surrounded by all of the noise coming out amongst people from all sides of the argument. In truth, it has been difficult to keep it all straight in my head. The whole event has been hard for me, but not surprising. There had been rumors of this sort of thing before, and everyone regularly told me it was just fake rumors and to pay it no mind. It would appear the story is different than they would have originally guessed.

So here I have been with my thoughts banging around inside of my head. Trying to figure out how to get them out without dogs of different breeds biting my hands off before I can finish getting a full sentence out. Tensions and emotions are high for incredibly good reason. My thoughts may sounds like they are trying to come from a rational perspective, but the truth is that these thoughts are rooted form deep emotional pain over everything. Here it goes.

1. The politicians aren’t going to fix everything. I have been chanting this statement forever, and it seems to be ignored by many. Please understand, I’m not saying abortion should not be banned. I would love nothing more than for it to be removed and recognized for what it is, but that is only part of the issue here. The ban of abortion for the Christian feels a bit like the dog chasing the mail truck. He would not quite know what to do with it if he caught it. Abortion does not exist because politicians waved a magic wand. Why do we spend all of our energy on the politicians then?

The simple truth is that no politician is going to fix this mess for us. To many people keep waiting every four years to vote for the guy they think will fix all of this, and it just is not working. That is the definition of insanity isn’t it? Doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results?

2. Abortion is wrong. For many this may seem like a no brainer statement, but it needs to be said in this post for what will come next. Abortion is the killing of innocent children. All life is sacred. I’m not saying that in the overused #alllivesmatter. Please don’t misunderstand the simplicity of this. Life is sacred. Just because our political vote alone will not fix the problem does not mean it goes ignored. We need to be diligent to defend the defenseless. We need to speak out against this, and should not allow our voices to remain silent on the matter.

3. We still believe in forgiveness. For my fellow Christian who have forgotten this statement, please camp out on this point. Yes, abortion is wrong. Yes it is the intentional killing of an innocent life. We still are called to forgive those who have this in their past. For those reading this who have had an abortion in their past, first let me say how truly sorry I am for the internal turmoil you have faced. I cannot begin to imagine what you must have had to go through. There are people in the church out there who can still welcome you with open arms. There is still a God who loves you and forgives you. I know our speaking out against abortion can sound painful, but we have all needed to be told where we have failed to meet God’s standard. We need to know what we have done that requires forgiveness in order to confess on that and receive it. I’m not here to judge in the sense of providing sentencing. Only God does that. I will continue to speak out on things like abortion, and point out a way to receive true forgiveness. Judgment would require condemnation. That is not what we provide. We bring flaws into the light, and point others to a way where healing can take place.

4. Pro-life is more than just being against abortion. This baffles me. We often end the whole Pro-0life abortion thing after birth. We often argue that we could be killing children who could become the next Einstein or Abraham Lincoln. This is incredibly true. Guess what, there is a good likelihood that they are also killing children who could cause serious harm. The kind of harm you have faced against that individual in your life that you already hate. They are killing people who will become poor. They are killing children who will become sinners. They are killing children who will grow up to cause incredible pain.

Here is why I say all that. What are we doing to make this world a place worth living in? How are we treating those who wrong us now? Do we interact with all we come in contact with as though their lives actually matter? Pro-life is about more than just giving life. It is about playing a part in this world that can provide the absolute best and most meaningful life possible for those we come in contact with. It is about caring for the orphans and the widows. It is about feeding the hungry. It is about presenting the Gospel in actions, but also in words that can point to the most profound and life altering truth anyone could ever here.

It is incredibly easy to be against abortion. It honestly is. What is hard is to be pro-life.