Posted Oct 13, 2016 by Kris Eldridge in Missions
This fall, during the months of September through November, forty days are being devoted to an international pro-life movement. 40 Days for Life is currently underway as the largest coordinated mobilization for the right to life in history. As part of this focus, we will be hearing from individual Fellowship members that are passionate about the pro-life movement.
by Heather Creech, Fellowship Bible Church member
In July I had the privilege of celebrating with a soon to be new mom the anticipated arrival of her baby girl. That afternoon was priceless as she sat at a table laughing, smiling and engaging with people she had never met until that day; who loved her and her baby as if they were members of their own families. In the short time I had gotten to know her, I think that was the first time I saw her really relax and take a breath of relief.
I thought about the day I met her, three months prior to this July day and there were no smiles that day. I was standing on the side of the road outside the Feminist Women’s Health Center feeling discouraged and starting to question if this is where God really wanted me to be. This center is where abortions (for babies up to 24 weeks) take place and no one was willing to come down and talk to me.
Then I saw a young man walking back and forth from his car to the building and looking lost. He made the trip twice and did not seem to really be going anywhere, so I called out to him. I waved and said “I know this is a hard day for you, I am so sorry for what you are going through. Want a cigarette? I have a lighter too.” Cautiously looking back at the security guard, he then walked toward me. I couldn’t believe it and realized I had no idea how to light a cigarette or even open the pack of cigarettes.
He told me his name and that his girlfriend was 18 weeks pregnant and going inside for an abortion. He shared that he had been adopted. When I asked him if abortion was what he and his girlfriend really wanted, he dropped his cigarette, hung his head and said, “No, but we don’t have any other options. We don’t know what else to do.”
I told him I came to offer other options and if he was willing to share the options with his girlfriend, we could save them the $1200 fee the clinic was going to charge. He took the bag of pregnancy resources, my phone number and hugged me. As I watched him walk away, I prayed silently that they would call or that she would just come out. I didn’t hear from them the rest of the day.
The next afternoon I received a text. “Hi, this is Amber. You talked with my boyfriend outside the clinic. I didn’t go through with the abortion. Can you help me?” Over the next few weeks, she and I developed a relationship. Knowing that she did not have much of a support system, I asked her if our church could celebrate her and her decision for choosing life. She agreed to it even though she didn't have anyone to invite. Her family was still not very supportive of the pregnancy.
I told her not to worry and that there was a whole church family who had been praying for her and her precious baby. The day of the baby shower came and when she walked into a room of strangers, with cake and presents, she covered her mouth and cried. That afternoon there was a real celebration of life and hope. As my husband and I helped load her boyfriend’s car and our own car with gifts she said, “All this is for me. I didn’t know any of those people.”
Women are shamed and left alone at abortion clinics. It’s messy and uncomfortable to many people to stand outside an abortion clinic and offer hope and love. I have even been told I am wasting my time. But that is exactly where Jesus meets us, in the dark, messy, shameful places; He offers us hope, love and redemption. Amber and Baby Ava are a beautiful reminder of what can happen when the church truly becomes Pro-Life.
Amber gave birth to Ava Elise on September 8 and has had the joy of sharing her baby girl’s first smiles.