Women Saving Lives

How Working With Each Other

Instead of Against Each Other

Can Save Lives

Because what we’ve done so far hasn’t succeeded

Imagine this scene:

child in traffic.1

A two-year old wanders onto a busy, traffic-laden street, trips and falls. The mother is crying, trying to get to her child, but for some reason, cannot. You have two options:

  • Make a sign with “Murderer” written on it and shout at the mother about how important it is to save her child’s life. Post on Facebook about irresponsible mothers who allow their children to wander into traffic. Write your Senator about how it should be illegal to allow children to wander into traffic.

OR

  • Run into the street to save the child and return her safely to her mother.

Now imagine this scene:

UltraSound

A woman enters a reproductive clinic (Planned Parenthood or otherwise). She is pregnant, confused and afraid. You don’t know her story – yet. She desperately needs comfort, compassion and information. She does not want to have an abortion, but she sees no other options.

Inside the clinic, there is a bright and comfortable waiting room. There are colorful photos of children playing and even some of children in utero. There is a team of professionals who provide safe health and human care:

Prenatal checkups

Counseling services for women who request them

Social services providing coupons for food, diapers, maternity and baby clothes

Volunteer services for driving, birthing coaches and “grandmas” for handholding, babysitting and after birth support visits

Adoption information and services

And yes, doctors who perform abortions for those horrific situations that occur when abortion becomes the treatment agreed upon between a woman, her doctor and her counselor

The Outliers: Clinic Bombers and Contraceptive Abortion

Before we continue to demonize each other, let’s face facts. Those who are guilty of or approve of bombing abortion clinics or killing doctors who perform abortions are outliers – they are the few crazies at the edges of the Pro-Life movement who need to be locked up.

At the same time, women who used abortion as contraception and could not care less about the lives growing inside them are also outliers – they are few and far between and need serious education. Most women who choose to have an abortion never make the decision lightly, and are haunted by it for years.

For those of you who are pro-life: according to an article in Christianity Today (Feb 2015), 70% of women who have had abortions identify as Christians; 50% identify as Evangelicals. Where is the compassion and grace? The resources and energy it takes to picket or make signs, craft legislation or research doctors could go toward reaching out and helping women who, for the most part, really don’t want to end their child’s life.

These same resources and energy can go toward getting to know a woman, asking how you can help her, showing her love and compassion instead of pushing her away, and scaring her into a decision she didn’t want to make in the first place.

For those of you who are pro-choice: the resources and energy it takes to vilify the Christian women who oppose you could be spent in simply admitting you have the very same beliefs. You could begin to embrace Christian women who have already had abortions and are consumed by guilt and shame. You can offer outreach and specialized counseling services like Silent No More.

 

Serena Williams handshake

Instead of continuing to demonize each other, let’s get to know each other, help one another, reach out to a sister one on one. Why?

Because we have allowed this ideological net to divide us.

Because we have allowed it to prevent us from finding common ground.

Because ultimately, our goals are the same.

Because we are still not saving lives.

We both want to reduce the number of abortions. We both want to provide safe health care for women. We both want to educate women. We both want to reduce unwanted pregnancies BEFORE CONCEPTION. And this can only be accomplished if we stop fighting each other.

It’s long past time to work together. We all have a vested interest in children’s lives. All children.

Could we begin today?

Thank you to Jim Voigt on Facebook for the inspiration for this post

18 comments

  1. Very well written! It’s so easy to judge, but love covers a multitude of sins.

    Like

    1. Thanks, Monica. Yes, it does!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I am a staunch, life-long Progressive Democrat and women’s rights/children’s rights advocate. I loathe abortion and could not imagine the circumstances under which I myself would have one. That said, this is a personal decision that a woman has to make with whomever she chooses to help her.

    Most women who have abortions do not do so lightly. Those very few women who are reckless about engaging in sexual activity and then solving an unwanted resulting pregnancy through abortion are reprehensible perhaps, but still suffer from the same after-effects that others endure when they have had abortions, elective or otherwise, including miscarriage. The number of women who continue to engage in this kind of practice are very, very few.

    In an ideal scenario, abortions would be made with the fetus having an advocate, so it could be represented properly in the decision-making process, when the mother and father are making decisions that suit them. This would be along the lines of the social work system we have right now to protect children from abusive or negligent parents. However, given the attitude of conservatives in this country about “welfare” programs of any kind, the likelihood of that kind of system being approved is remote, sadly. That would be my preference.

    Under no circumstance do I see any government official or body making this decision arbitrarily and across the board for the woman and child involved.

    And, to treat the woman in any way except the kind, compassionate, loving and sensitive manner that you describe, is un-Christian, pure and simple. That from this 47-year Roman Catholic.

    Like

    1. Brilliant contribution to this discussion, Beth. We certainly need to come up with something better than we have now, and definitely need to work together to form solutions. As I said, what we’ve been doing so far hasn’t worked, and we’ve only alienated each other in the process. We simply must come together on this for all concerned.

      Like

  3. So true, Susan. We demonize and polarize by pointing to the “outliers” (on both sides), rather than actually trying to understand each other and work together to help the person in need.

    Like

  4. The True Light! · ·

    I like the message of peace and loving understanding in your post, Susan. I believe as you do that people on both sides of this or any issue need to exercise more understanding, even if their points of view may be different. In the end, we all will believe and follow the best course of action as we see it. Hopefully, it is in accordance with the will of God first and foremost.

    Steve

    Like

    1. “In the end, we all will believe and follow the best course of action as we see it. Hopefully, it is in accordance with the will of God first and foremost.”

      Steve, I’m certain I know what you mean here, yet I am troubled by this statement. Please don’t take offense; let me explain what I mean. My concern is that when most people make this kind of statement, they mean exactly what it says – we’ll follow our own point of view as we see it, and if God is in line with it, terrific. (Like I said, I am certain this is not what you meant to say.)

      The message I continue to harp on is that Jesus loved first, offered grace second; only then did He grant people the space to repent and be redeemed and restored. If our message is first that people are wretched sinners, they will close their eyes and ears to the message of love and grace. If we continue on this path, we bar the door to them ever walk through it into the kingdom of God.

      Make sense?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The True Light! · ·

        Yes it does, Susan. And you are right, I did not say what I meant very well. I agree with what you have said here completely.

        What I meant to say is that as Christians we are to do the will of the Father in everything. What I meant was that hopefully, we realize that is our duty and privilege as children of God.

        I disagree with those who feel compelled to “shove this point” down people’s throats…even to the point of violence. That is completely against what our Lord has asked of us.

        I hope this helps to clear up my earlier point. I did post a viewpoint which is in agreement with this just now, and I hope you will read it. You helped to inspire the remarks, Susan…

        Let me know what you think with any comments you may have.

        Steve

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      2. Thank you for the clarification, Steve. I didn’t want folks to get the wrong idea about you or your own ideals. And I will certainly go over to your blog and give a read.

        Pebbles and ripples….

        Liked by 1 person

      3. The True Light! · ·

        Thank you so much for pointing out the lack of clarity in my remarks, Susan. I don’t want anyone misunderstanding who I am or what I believe…

        Steve 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Moving, powerful, concise post, Susan. The theme could be applied to life in general. Getting to know our fellow travelers and having compassion…and love…extending a hand to help!. Thanks for your caring heart ♡

    Like

    1. True, Lorrie, it could be applied elsewhere. This topic, however, seems to have such a hot button – probably one of the top three or four – and we have to stop spinning our wheels getting the same result. We must allow our hearts to be transformed about it and all the other issues that divide us so violently.
      Thank you for your beautiful comment. I appreciate it. ❤

      Like

      1. I appreciate your conviction on hot topics!! And support your beautiful soul…and your opinions ♡ Blessitude

        Like

      2. Thank you so much, Lorrie. My heart is warmed and my soul is lifted by your support.
        Blessings and gratitude to you, sweet sister! ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Well said Susan. All sides are so entrenched and defensive, they have forgotten to Love. They miss the point of just how much they already have in common.

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    1. Exactly, Paul. We must begin to see each other as individual human beings instead of “issues” or “agendas.” We must get past the rhetoric and listen instead of scream at each other. We each have mothers, sisters, daughters or nieces. We all have powerful feelings of love for others. We must stop the accusations and sit down with one person and see that person as Jesus does – a sister God created with hurts in our past and offer each other the respect and dignity we all deserve.

      Like

  7. I need to start be saying I am all pro-life. I read this and could not agree more with your conclusions. I have long said our enemies best weapon is a divided church, and we have that on this issue.

    We’ll written and we’ll thought out. Now, how do we put it into action?

    Like

    1. We need to reach out to one person “across the aisle.” Get to know one person who disagrees; one person individually. We need to know each others’ stories – courageously offer up who we are as people, not just our agendas. Communicate over a meal; begin to love one another as people, not as an issue, but as dignified individuals created by God. And go from there.

      Like

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