Saturday, February 1, 2014

Pro-Life? Pro-Choice? Any Alternatives?

I decided to make a post about a particularly touchy issue in our society, which has been on my mind for the past few days.  If there is anything I have written that is offensive or is said in error, I apologize.  Before I actually begin, I want to make it clear that this post is not intended to be an argument of pro-life or pro-choice, but rather a suggestion of a new (actually it's not that new, but it's still good to bring up) approach to supporting women in need.  You see, while I understand the concerns about the life of a fetus/unborn child in the argument about abortion, I can't ignore the life of the woman that supports it.  Granted, there are some women out there who use abortion as another form of birth control even when they have the means to support a child.  With them I think I will disagree.  However, there are also women who don't see it this way, but their lives are endangered by the pregnancy, or they are the victims of rape, or they simply do not have the resources/support group necessary to go through with the pregnancy.  People - especially us Christians - can do a lot better than simply telling a woman that abortion is a sin and then leaving her on her own to deal with pregnancy, motherhood, and the difficulties that come with them.

Thankfully there are pregnancy centers out there that help women with unplanned pregnancies, but one that especially stands out to me is this pregnancy center.  It stands out because one time, New Heart church members (including myself) visited the Living Well Pregnancy Center to clean up the building's rooms and organize its supplies.  I remember that my mom thoroughly scrubbed their bathroom to a whole new level of cleanliness.  I'm sorry that we never made another visit to help them out some more, because I feel that what this and other pregnancy centers do is a better way to encourage life than simply saying "I'm Pro-Life, and you should be too."  The pregnancy center's mantra "You Are Not Alone" is undoubtedly a more encouraging message to hear.  I think the website best phrases what this center does by saying, "our mission is to provide alternative services and practical solutions to each woman facing an unplanned pregnancy, in order to allow her to make a rational decision without the undue pressure of her other circumstances."  The center even provides post-abortion counseling, showing love even to the women who decided to go through with abortion.  I can't tell you how great Living Well's mission statement is, nor how much better our time would be spent supporting Living Well than condemning women who choose abortion.  I do want to note here that I'm not saying all people who express Pro-Life views are condemning, unloving, or unhelpful people because that's really not true.  I simply want to point out that supporting organizations (with time, money, whatever is on your heart to give) seems a more effective and active way to save lives (and I'm not just talking about the lives of fetuses).  So, Pro-Life or Pro-Choice?  I think the real question should be if we're Pro-Help.

Thank you for reading my personal thoughts on this, and understand that I am in no way trying to guilt-trip anyone into volunteering, donating, or anything like that.  It's just something that I felt needed to be expressed and pondered on, if even for a moment.