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Abortion Through Your Eyes
Brett Anderson ©2004

This week's thort is going to comprise of more testimonies because I think they speak a lot more authoritatively in some areas than I could on the topic:

Firstly two different people recommended I read a book which deals with the topic and so I have gone out and bought it but not started it yet - here is what they had to say:


"an interesting, pretty hectic and emotional book to read is Atonement Child by Francine Rivers, it is about a girl who is raped and the major decisions she has to make.. it really made me think.

just want to let u know about the book...ok it is a story about a girl and she has it all..she's young, beautiful and she goes to a Christian college, this is where she meets her man. He is a real catch...anyway she has it all then in one "horrific, terrifying moment, Dynah Carey's perfect life is shattered by rape, her future irrevocably altered by an unwanted pregnancy, her doting family torn apart. Her seemingly rock-solid faith is pushed to the limits as she faces the most momentous choice of her life-to embrace or to end the untimely life within her."

So I will get to that book as soon as I can and let you know what I think, but one worth looking out for.


Starting off with more from Tim who shared in the last thort:

With regards to an abortion after rape, I'm not sure I have an absolute answer in that situation. But I know there is a difference between what FEELS right or wrong and what IS right or wrong, and much of the decision that would be made in a rape-based abortion case comes from the (justified) feelings of anger, hate, shame, and countless other intense emotions.

The thing I'm trying to emphasize by sharing my story is that the abortion dilemma has less to do with the pregnant woman than it does with the child that she is carrying. I so often hear people argue for abortion (especially in the case of rape) on the grounds that the pregnancy will have a destructive effect on the mother, but who mentions the child? Let me illustrate…

As a musician, I'm not too crazy about classical music, but one guy who stands out for me is Beethoven. He was a fourth child, and the three children his mother bore before him all had MAJOR problems from birth – one deaf, one blind, etc. So his folks were practically EXPECTING a child whose life would be tremendously impaired. The thing was, he became the greatest composer of all time – most classical music is defined in terms of being post-Beethoven or pre- Beethoven. His life appeared to have no value in the face of his parents having to raise yet another child as challenging as his siblings, but he proved his value a thousand times over.


Then there is the testimony of Sharon Black:

I was one of the Blessed - I was born into a family that celebrated the truth, taught the truth and made a way for me to have a relationship with CHRIST our KING. As with all human beings and particularly teenage human beings - I decided one day that I knew better and announced that I would never attend church again! This broke my father's heart as he really did believe that it was his job to bring his children to GOD. Selfish, pig headed and arrogant I did not see this at the time and allowed myself - maybe even drove myself away from the truth and into a life of worldly 'fun'.

The wheels came off as I am sure you would know and I became a mother at the age of 19. I was married and had another child and suffered abuse from my husband and at the age of 22 found myself divorced and on the street with two children. My parents opened their hearts and their home to me and in their way tried to bring about the changes in my life that I so badly needed.

Not listening, not looking for GOD or hearing HIM. I fell pregnant with a man that I was hoping would fill the deep void within me ... to cut a long story short ... he ran at the news and I was alone. I was alone and I was afraid and I was confused ... my own fault because in my heart I knew that there was the answer in GOD but still chose to rule my own life and to make choices for myself. I had an abortion ... now this was a very long time ago. It was not easy, it was not safe and it was not at all right. I met some incredibly unsavoury people who gave me potions and mixtures and stuck knitting needles into my body and still I remained pregnant. Now I was afraid that if I did not 'get rid' of the baby it would be born deformed and I spent every drop of energy in finding a way. There is always a way, make no mistake ... the evil one is everywhere!

I had it done, and empty and alone I went home to recover in my bed and all I did was cry and wail and pound at the walls of my life. Still ... I did not seek GOD.

Years later I met my husband that I have been gloriously married to for the past 18 years. We wanted a baby - I mean really wanted a baby and I suffered 6 miscarriages until GOD Blessed me with my littlest one.

During all of that time of trying and losing I allowed myself to believe the lie that GOD was punishing me for my sin of abortion. It was not until my father died and I had a major faith crisis and was lovingly restored to MY KING through people like you that I found salvation for this sin. I confessed it to an audience and felt the LORD wash me clean and make me whole. I imagine that if there is any way to serve GOD and to thank HIM for HIS amazing and absoloute MERCY, it is to share this story of mine.

The point of this story is that I LOVE my children with all my heart and I count them as the most divine gifts I have ever been blessed with. I know that if I had only trusted in GOD at that time of my life ... if I had only turned to HIM .... If I had only taken hold of the TRUTH I would have brought into this world another child through the work of HIS hands. I know without any doubt that the price for this awful sin was paid on the cross by CHRIST ... just as I know without any doubt that the LORD in his power would have provided a way for me to have had that child. I know that women suffer anxiousness, fear and a certainty that what they are doing by having an abortion is in some way better for the child as well. This is a lie, it is a lie that the evil one uses when we are at our most vulnerable. I pray that if anyone reads this and is in the position that I was in ... they turn to the LORD and he will give them HIS forgiveness and BLESS them with a way to bring that life that HE created into the world.

This morniNG I was reading the Song Of Mary's in Luke - where she gives Praise to the Lord for the Blessing of JESUS in her womb. It struck me deeply - this was a woman pregnant out of wedlock - and yes I know it was extremely different but she had the Grace to obey the LORD and to go ahead with the birth.

Sharon


When I asked Sharon for permission to use this as a thort and whether I could use her name or not she wrote this back:

As to using my name - with all my heart I give you my permission, perhaps this will give me a way to help and to be obedient to GOD in doing so. You may also use my e.mail address and invite anyone who needs to discuss this with me to email me. I think that another important lesson is the fact that the LORD knows our deepest secrets and actually HE is the only relevant judge - what people think or say is not relevant at all, so I am not afraid to be exposed - if this helps one person, then it is worth having done.

Sharon Black (sharon@f2b.co.za)


Then there was a slightly different in tone email from my friend Jade and I thort it would be good to share this because I am sure there are others who have been reading the thorts with the same kind of feelings:

I just have some opinions to do with you thorts over the past two weeks that i would like to share with you. They might sound a bit harsh but it's just the way i'm feeling, and i feel very strongly about this topic.

Firstly, i agree with most of the things you are saying and especially in the area that if you don't want to get pregnant you shouldn't have sex. But on the more sensitive issues of rape etc i just want to share something with you. I realise that your thorts are your opinion and what you think is right, but Brett, try being a woman and being faced with the fear of being raped almost every day.

In discussion with my friends we often say how rape is the thing we fear most, none of us could even imagine the pain of falling pregnant because of that. I don't think i would no how to deal with that situation except by getting an abortion. The truth is that you're a guy and you will never exerience what it is like to be pregnant with a rapists baby and i haven't had that experience either. but to be perfectly honest it is much easier for you to say how wrong abortion is even in these situations when you yourself will never ever experience them. You don't have to live in fear of being raped and falling pregnant and then having to deal with the consequences.

Also one last thing is that there are also these hectic emotional things that come with giving babies up for adoption, can't say I'd like to go through that either. OH yeah, maybe abortion should not be so women focused but men need to realise that they also play a role and that they have a HUGE responsibility as well.

Anyway, hope you have a great week. God Bless Love jade misplon


Then part of my response to Jade (who I love and respect VERY much for writing this kind of real, honest email to me):

The one thing I have realised from someone else's mail is the first thort (with the 'don't stick the penis in the vagina' comment) was written without specifically thinking of rape as a related topic - so that harsh way of stating it which was intended to shock and grab attention was written aimed at those who chose to have sex and thinking about it now if I had thort of the rape aspect I possibly would not have included that statement which must smack of insensitivity to someone who has undergone rape. But that was not the target audience of that thort (which I know does not help now!) and from the responses to that thort and the reply to the letter that was published in the Argus/Cape Times (shortened version of thort) I had that topic brought into focus which resulted in the second thort (and probly one more because this is not a topic I want to brush over - really want the people who need it to have the time/opportunity for healing and restoration and understanding)...

The question the reply asked me in the paper was something like 'you call abortion murder. does that still apply when the person is raped?' - I will admit it becomes a lot trickier and difficult to understand when it is rape... but if I believe that abortion is murder then that HAS to cover all backgrounds of abortion and so I stand with my statement.

The line that stands out for me (in the Tim mail I quoted from above to her)is where he says there is a difference between what IS right and wrong and what feels right and wrong... If we REALLY believe in an all-powerful God then surely that has to cover giving a woman strength/boldness/support to do the humanly unthinkable thing of going thru with a pregnancy that is an ongoing reminder of the evil that has been done to her... if you say abortion is the ONLY response then what if you know the kid will be born 'deformed' because surely your argument would almost have to be the same for both and then you are treading on very dangerous territory with what next? Old people etc... I'm not saying for a second that this is easy or possible from a human perspective but from God's perspective He can make the impossible happen.

And then I shared this other email that I received in response to the first TFTW which was maybe the most hectic one so far:


Hi Brett

I just wanted to share a short and uplifting story with you in response to your last Thortfortheweek on abortion:

On my first day at advertising college I met a girl in my class who already had a 1 year old kid. She was only 18 years of age at the time, but what really surprised me was how excited she was about her child. On that first day (during a lunch break in the college canteen), she produced her purse and proudly began to show us all her photos of her little blonde son. There was joy in her eyes when she spoke of him and he would even come to visit us sometimes in class. She came from a loving Christian family and was very blessed to have parents that stood by her and supported her throughout her pregnancy. They seemed just as besotted over their grandson as she was over her little boy!

I remember the day she told me how she got pregnant. She was 17, in grade 11 at high school, and had been leaving a club one night. She was attacked and horrifically raped in the club's parking lot, and to this day she has no idea who the rapist was and what he looked like. On top of that horror, she fell pregnant from the rape, and had to endure her matric year whilst carrying her child to term. But she carried the child to term. She chose not to abort it. In the end, out of something so ugly and horrific, God was able to bring something beautiful and joyous into her life. I remember her telling me that why should her child pay for what someone else had done to her?

I still remember that first day in the canteen with her showing us her child's photos. She was (and still is) such a proud mom. And he, in turn, has brought such joy and happiness into her life.

Her story is remarkable, and nothing short of a miracle, when considering the circumstances that brought her little boy into this world.


ONLY GOD!!! and I hope that this email has maybe given you some more stuff to think about and consider... please let me know what your response is and again thank you so much for writing what you did... I am accountable and want to be held so by all TFTW readers...

God bless you love brett


And lastly Jade's reply to me:

Hi Brett

Firstly, you are more than welcome to use my e-mails for any of your thorts and i don't mind if you want to use my name or anything.

In response to your e-mail firstly i want to tell you that i don't dispute that what you are saying is right, because it is. Perhaps what made me feel most uncomfortable was that it was the cold hard truth. But maybe it was not so much what you said but that it was you who said it. Don't take this the wrong way and i don't know if other people feel the same but hearing it from a guy just makes me put my guard up because it will never happen to a guy.

But perhaps i'm wrong and i definitely agree with you because this shouldn't be about a women or men thing it's about the child. I don't know...... it's really just the way i feel about this subject and i suppose none of us will ever know how we would handle the situation until we are in it. That story about the girl who was raped that you sent me was really something that made me think, thanks so much.

Anyway......just some of my thorts. Have a great week, looking forward to you next thort to see what other people think and thanks for taking the time to get back to me, really appreciate it. God bless, love Jade

So ja, Wow! A lot of stuff. THANK YOU SO MUCH TO EVERYONE WHO WROTE IN AND SHARED PERSONAL STORIES AND THORTS ON THE TOPIC. I didn't use all of the stuff I got because there was so much, but hopefully with the stuff we have seen over the last two weeks we have got a lot of stuff to think about and take to God and process and work through. This is not an easy topic. It is not something God intended. Abortion is one of the consequences of a screwed up world. But it IS a relevant isue and so we as the church have to have thort abot it and have an opinion.

Let me finish off by reminding you of the Godly 'Love the sinner, hate the sin!' philosophy that I think was what Jesus demonstrated. Abortion is wrong. It is a sin. It is an abomination. BUT someone who has had an abortion is to be loved and cared for with all of our heart and strength and soul and mind.

Those of us who don't love those who have had abortions, or are practising homosexuals, or have had sex before marriage, or are living together out of marriage, or who are caught in extra-marital affairs, or on drugs... who of us has the right to throw the first stone? [John 8:2-11]

Have an awesome week, loving those around you who may be in even greater need than others who may be in somewhat easier circumstances.