Faith Frontiers

Choosing Life Engenders Life

Call her April. In the early 1960s, she was seventeen and a senior in high school when pressured into a sexual relationship. She believed the young man who fathered her child was her best friend, until they learned she was pregnant. April was then pressured to get an abortion by the young man, but she refused. He was going to college and did not want a family. April thought through her situation and, guided by her pastor, remained faithful to her Christian principles and convictions. She would give birth to this child and raise her, alone if necessary. In order for the child to have a surname, the young man married April but divorced her after their daughter's birth. He then abandoned April and the child, went away to college, and never saw them again until their child was grown.

In spite of her pregnancy, April graduated from high school and enrolled in college. Her college classmates supported April throughout her pregnancy, and many even attended the baptism of her child. April graduated from a college of nursing and became a successful professional. Her daughter is now grown, married with a family of her own, and teaches in the public school system. To her credit and April's, she established contact with her biological father and restored family relationships. Additionally, one of her sons (April's grandson) saved the lives of two fellow soldiers while serving in the Middle East.

This story illustrates what can happen when one party in a relationship fails to exercise self-restraint and seeks only to fulfill his desire without taking responsibility for the outcome. But it also illustrates how April's response became more important than her pregnancy when abortion was rejected and the future of her child, her grandsons, and the lives two soldiers were a result.

There are many stories like this….stories of women's bravery and perseverance in the face of isolation, abandonment, and betrayal. Sadly, our modern, narcissistic society encourages the irresponsible sexual behavior that lies behind these situations, particularly among grown boys who fail to mature into responsible men.

The solution to the social problem of abortion does not lie with improved health care or even with legalizing abortion itself. We must accept that abortion is, first and foremost, the destruction of a human life. You can rationalize it and seek to justify it, but abortion never changes. A fertilized human egg in a mother's womb is a genetically unique individual at every stage of its development. Give this living organism any name you wish, but it is still a human child dependent on the mother who in turn depends on others. The support April received from her family and classmates was essential for her success as a single mother.

The primary problem underlying abortion can be found within people's attitudes toward life itself. Since the late 1960s, children have been incorrectly taught that life is first about them personally and the gratification of their personal desires. We hear people demand of others, "I am entitled" to this or to that, no matter the cost to others. Modern society agrees, because all want their "rights." But the unborn cannot demand their right to life except through an advocate. When a pregnancy develops, there is a moral "obligation" to bring the child into the world. One human being does not have the moral right to arbitrarily take the life of another for the sake of a "quick fix" to an awkward situation.

During the 32 years ending 2005, there were 45 million legal abortions in the United States. Nearly half of all pregnancies are unintended. Four in ten are terminated by abortion. This trend can be reversed through self-regulation and a moral orientation toward the value of human life. Exercise self-control when relations heat up. Ideally, practice abstinence until marriage and be responsible in your relationships. Respect life and honor the way God made the world to work.