Abortion and Men
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“Can your church finance an abortion for my daughter?” These were the words spoken to me at the altar of a church I co-pastor. Standing there with an aching heart, I knew a simple study of what scripture states regarding life in the womb wasn’t the only thing this hurting woman needed. I could exhort her about the value of the yet unborn life inside the womb, but what if she has difficulty valuing life outside of the womb as well?
Believers are called to “bear one another’s burdens” as directed in scripture (). In this case, a middle-aged woman’s reality, her “burden”, was that the financial, physical, and relational difficulties in our fallen world weighed heavy enough that it warranted terminating the life inside her daughter rather than bringing that life into her reality. She felt this world would not support her and her pregnant daughter, hence her daughter could not support the child. Now, this is no reason, by any means, to terminate a pregnancy. But it did awake my thinking to the fact that the less someone values life in general (or the less they feel valued), the more prone they may be to have an abortion.
As a man, I believe we can play a strong role in valuing or devaluing life by how we treat women. Imagine for a brief moment if every woman who received an abortion last year had a man who 1) was dedicated to raising the child, 2) was committed to financially and emotionally supporting both mother and baby, and 3) wanted to devote and lay down the rest of his life for the woman as her husband. Would the number of abortions decrease? Probably.
Suppose again that all men 1) uplifted sex as a gift given by God for oneness and intimacy between a woman and man for life, 2) possessed the mindset that sexual appearance did not determine one’s worth, nor 3) sexual activity one’s popularity. Would the number of unwanted pregnancies decrease? Most likely.
For men to casually dabble in or approve of the sexualization of relationships outside of commitment and then be stark anti-abortionists sends a contradictory message.
My wife recently gave birth to our first son. The pregnancy process was not the easiest nor did everything happen the way we envisioned. Yet the outpouring of support she had leading up to, during, and after the birth was tremendous: baby showers, family visits, food deliveries, diapers, clothes. I’m thankful I was able to be a part of that support.
When I consider other pregnant women without support facing anxiety, fear, sickness, basic standards of living, the planned and unplanned costs associated with birth and raising a child, the weight of being responsible for a fragile human life when struggling to simply take care of yourself… it’s staggering. Now add “absent or indifferent father” to the list. It’s no shock that some women believe they have no other choice but abortion.
The heart of abortion is a gospel issue, not simply a behavioral issue. But the more men uplift the worth of women, sex, and life in general in light of the gospel, the more “pro-life” we all will be. For it is only through Jesus that a mother or potential father will find full value in life. When one experiences the gospel on this side of the womb, the heart is illuminated to the value that God has for the unborn lives yet inside of the womb.
Copyright © 2019 Jonathan Santiago, used with permission.
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