Saturday, September 19, 2009

Not a choice

There are a couple of topics I generally don't talk a whole lot about... One of them is abortion. I think about it some, but almost never talk about it. And when I think about it, I generally shelf it for another day when I'm ready to deal with the dilemma racing through my mind. Basically, I am well aware that my thoughts were well-intentioned but not godly.

I can easily say that if my husband and I were to unexpectedly conceive a child, abortion would never be an option. However, where I have really struggled with abortion not being an option is in the case of rape. As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, I have a personal knowledge of the far-reaching, long-term trauma such an experience causes. The thought that privately races through my mind is, "Why should any female (child or adult) have to experience the compounding heartbreak and difficulty of pregnancy, labor, and then raising or giving up the child for adoption?" That, in itself, just sounds like an overwhelming heartbreak that no one should have to experience after all she has already been through.

I have heard a lot of debate for and against abortion. I have read scripture, and always had a "yea, but.." response running through my mind. But then, a couple of weeks ago, I had just started reading Crazy Love. The section I was reading has nothing at all to do with abortion, but as I read the following statement, a truth hit me like I'd never heard it before. (Yes, I can be a very slow learner... I know.)

This section of the book is about how God is all-knowing. Francis Chan refers to David's writing in Psalm 139: "that even in the darkness he (David) could not hide from God; that while he (David) was in his mother's womb, God was there."

I have heard this scripture so many times before... I'm almost embarrassed that I really didn't get it until now. What did it for me is that not only did God know us while we were in our mother's wombs, but that God was there. He. Was. There. And when God's present (which is always - duh), He uses all things for his good.

Becoming pregnant and giving birth to a child that was conceived through a rape would be extremely difficult. The entire situation might very well be the most difficult circumstance that person will face in their entire life, but God is there. God can and will bring glory from every circumstance if we will allow it. We should fear nothing, for He will never forsake us.

As I have processed all of this over the last couple of weeks, I've thought of it in terms of cancer. A person with cancer cannot run from it. It must be treated. Dealt with. That cancer patient will be miserably sick and may endure excruciating pain and undesirable surgeries or other treatments... Once treatment is complete, the cancer patient may very well be cancer free. And, as in the case of my dear friend Jim, sometimes getting a cancer diagnosis actually results in a much-improved life that knows a closeness with the Lord that might not have happened otherwise.

Sometimes life hands us some pretty rotten stuff... It is never easy to embrace our trials, but we've got to trust God to carry us through it and use it for his glory.

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