Life Lines

I get tired of hearing pro-abortion choice advocates claim that pro-lifers are really “only anti-abortion” but not “truly pro-life.” The motivation behind such attacks is usually political. Typically, the accuser wants to shame a pro-lifer into supporting some massive social program, which ostensibly helps the “already born.” As usual, the pro-abortion choice advocate makes the major error of assuming without evidence that the born are humans worthy of support while the unborn are non-humans and thus lacking intrinsic value. That major scientific and philosophic error is compounded by a factual error: It ignores the massive investment the pro-life movement is making in crisis pregnancy centers, or CPCs.

Even during the height of the abortion holocaust in the early 1990s, there were two million couples willing to adopt children here in the United States alone. This easily exceeded the 1.5-1.6 million children that were being aborted in America annually. Pro-life couples have long been prepared to save lives and to provide good homes to those babies whose lives were spared. But it gets even better. As the decade progressed, the willingness of pro-lifers to step up and adopt “unwanted” babies was supplemented by another positive trend: The CPCs actually began to outnumber the abortion clinics.

Fully appreciating the importance of this requires knowing something about what CPCs actually do. Contrary to pro-abortion choice propaganda, they are not there to shame women into keeping their babies. In fact, such slander against our CPCs is just the opposite of the truth.

The initial trip to a CPC usually results in a pregnancy test. Often, the pregnant woman cannot yet have an ultrasound because she is not far enough along in the pregnancy. Fortunately, many pregnancy centers are fully equipped with the technology and personnel needed to provide ultrasound testing when a woman returns for a second visit.

Our local Life Line Pregnancy Center here in Wilmington, North Carolina, is one such center (see http://www.lifelinewilmington.org). They have an ultrasound machine and they always have nurses on hand to perform the tests and explain the results. The end result of their work is nothing short of miraculous. At Life Line in Wilmington, 89% of the women who seek their help in a crisis pregnancy situation end up choosing life over abortion.

But the help does not end there. Life Line also helps the women get connected to a church that can provide them with additional support. Life Line does not provide direct financial assistance to women facing crisis pregnancy situations. They do so indirectly by plugging women into networks that provide needed resources.

If you take a quick survey of the church websites here in Wilmington you will see that many of them support Life Line Pregnancy Center. The only question is why every church does not support a CPC like Life Line. Imagine the impact if all of them did. By some estimates, there are about 750 churches in the Wilmington area alone.

The decision to support a CPC is not one that should be politicized. When it comes to the work of CPCs we have a rare issue upon which both conservative and liberal Christians can agree – although they may arrive in the same place for somewhat different reasons.

Consider the following:

1. Conservative Christians want to eliminate abortion and preserve innocent life. Obviously, the conservative wants to eventually overturn Roe v. Wade and save millions of lives. But that is no impediment to his decision to save some lives in the interim by supporting his local CPC. He can attack abortion in both the community and legal realm simultaneously.

2. Liberal Christians want to eliminate poverty and preserve a woman’s bodily autonomy. Anyone claiming to be liberal should be on board with helping poor women obtain much needed financial support. Furthermore, those who support the idea of a woman doing what she wants with her body would never want a woman to be forced into having an abortion due to economic hardship. Clearly, supporting a CPC is consistent with basic liberal principles.

At all times we must remember that abortion only exists in America with the permission of the church. It is past time for congregations with different political views to unify and do something about it. We are all commended to care for women and children. We are also reminded that sin is not just doing something bad – it is also knowing the right thing to do and refusing to do it.

For further reading: See James 1:27 and James 4:17.

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