Abortion—Minus the Father’s Voice
After being on the other side of the abortion issue during my younger years, I stand amazed at how the Lord changed my heart and chose me to be one of His instruments to minister to women in a crisis pregnancy. Then, after 20 years of ministering to women, one day I found myself ministering to a man whose life was being turned upside down by abortion.
I was just walking out the door of the pregnancy center to go home when the receptionist said to me, "There’s a man on the phone, and he sounds like he’s in distress. Could you take this call before you leave?" I stopped, looked at my watch, and walked back to the counseling office, pondering the thought that it was a man on the other end of the phone line. I took the call and heard a voice of desperation as he uttered these words: "My wife is going to have an abortion. How can I stop her?” I knew the answer to that question, but to give the young man the answer over the phone when he was so despondent would not be wise.
He told me where he worked and what time he got off, and I made plans to meet him at a local restaurant. I then called a pastor friend and asked him to meet us there. Looking around as I entered the small restaurant, I immediately picked out the young man by the expression on his face. He was in great pain. My pastor friend arrived as soon as I was introducing myself. We ordered coffee, and tears streamed down the face of the man who wanted his second child. He told us how his wife didn't want another child, and she had an appointment for an abortion. His only thought was how to stop her. Did he need a lawyer? What did he need to do?
The pastor took out his Bible and shared the story of Hosea, how God told him to receive his wife back, even after she was unfaithful to him. After the pastor spoke, it was my duty to give this man the bad news: It was his wife’s decision whether to carry the baby or to have the abortion. Fair or not, there was nothing he could do to stop it. He had no voice!
But then I told him the good news of salvation: ...all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…..For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 3:23, 6:23). That night, the young man was born again into the kingdom of God! He left the restaurant not only a different man, but a new creation!
I went home that evening, revisiting the ways the Lord had worked in my life. In the early 1980s, He had given me the opportunity to slop spaghetti onto plates at a local Right to Life fundraising dinner and then to become a volunteer at a crisis pregnancy center. Later, I served as president of our local RTL chapter. Further down the road, I was privileged to serve as president and lobbyist for Florida Right to Life. Serving as lobbyist, I was blessed to work on pro-life legislation such as Parental Notification and the Women’s Health and Safety Act, both of which became law in our state—but not without court challenges. I went to sleep that night overwhelmed at how Jesus had worked in my life.
A few days after our meeting in the restaurant, I heard from my new friend again. His wife had gone through with the abortion and left town with his only child, a 7-year-old daughter, after filing for divorce. The man was heartbroken to say the least, but he stayed in the Word which gave him the strength to endure. I was at his baptism on a Sunday night when he brought me a box of candy and a thank you note.
Then, a year later—the day before Thanksgiving—I walked into the empty sanctuary of my church to put a few things away, and the young man was sitting there, alone, with his eyes closed. He must have heard me, because he called my name as I was leaving. “Robin,” he said. “There is something I need to tell you. The night the Lord found me, my intention was to go home and kill my wife, the baby she carried, my daughter, and myself. I thank God for intervening.”
God had indeed intervened! But what if I had not taken that phone call or had told the young man I would call him back in the morning? It seems the Lord always has a lesson—not only for the receiver of His Word, but also for the giver. I’m so grateful the Lord impressed me with the urgency of taking the phone call that evening. I know that God would have intervened no matter what, but oh what a blessing I would have missed…and what a lesson I learned!