Asking for a Friend
What Do You Do If You’re Pregnant?
Todd Wagner | 2018-07-17
When unexpected events occur the first question is usually, "what are my options?" When it comes to an unplanned pregnancy, the answer can seem a bit more complicated. This week we learn from King David the hard truths of how to keep one mistake from leading to another.
What Do You Do If You’re Pregnant?
When unexpected events occur the first question is usually, "what are my options?" When it comes to an unplanned pregnancy, the answer can seem a bit more complicated. This week we learn from King David the hard truths of how to keep one mistake from leading to another.
Well, hello Porch. How are we doing? Great to be with you. My name's Todd. I get to hang out with you guys periodically and hang around here all the time at Watermark. It's awesome to be here. I'm going to tell you a story about a friend, and he has a question for you. True story.
I have a friend who is very powerful. This particular friend was a good guy for a long time, but one day…you know how it is…he laid his eyes on something he couldn't keep his eyes off of. He kept looking at it, and he kept liking it, and eventually he tapped into it. Not just a little bit, but all the way. Just one time, and he thinks that she's pregnant. Even worse, this deal with my friend is that it was not just a friend of a friend of his, it was the wife of a friend of his.
He comes to me, and he says, "What are my options if she's pregnant?" I'm asking for a friend. Here it is, "I was just getting along, having a good time with a girl. All of a sudden, we get at it. Just one time, but a good time for a long time. Then we get this." I'm asking for a friend."What do you do if you're pregnant, man? What are your options? What can I do now?"
Let me just go on to tell you something about this friend. True story. This friend was powerful. I told you that. What he did was he decided to try and cover up the mistake he made this one time with his friend's wife. He invited the friend home. The friend was away doing business from him. The friend worked for him. He brought the friend back home, thinking that bringing the friend back home would cause the friend (who'd been away for a while) to sleep with his wife.
Then maybe when he worked forward nine, ten months he would figure out that the child was his. It would all go away, and it would be his little secret and the wife's secret. He was going to let it go away, but here's the thing. When his friend came home from where his friend came back from, he had left some other friends. He was called home with a special envoy, by this friend of mine, to come back.
When the friend came back he was honorable and said, "I'm not going to enjoy the benefits with my wife this short time when I'm home. I'm going to be all about business," so he didn't sleep with his wife. So my friend has a problem. He wants to know what his options are because she is pregnant.
What he actually did is (he decided to do something crazy) he sent this friend of his back. I didn't tell you this yet, but what his friend was, was a warrior, like a Navy SEAL. Think like a Navy SEAL. He was a Navy SEAL, and because he was powerful, he put this guy in a position where he knew that, probably, in the mission that he was on, he wouldn't survive. True story.
His friend, whose wife he had slept with one time and she got pregnant, died. He, in effect, murdered his friend. As he tried to figure out what he should do, and he was thinking through his options, he's all, "I can't tell my friend I slept with this gal. I can't tell the world that this girl is pregnant by me, so what I'm going to do is set this person up, and I'm basically going to murder this person. That's what I'm going to do, because this person I didn't mean to get pregnant, got pregnant. I think my option is to eliminate my problem."
How many of ya'll want to live in a land with a person like that, who, because it was more convenient for them, because it was powerful, they were powerful and able to do this…? The way they dealt with their problem that was a major inconvenience was to commit murder. Anybody want to live in a land like that? I know I don't.
There's a change that was made in our society back in 1776. We conducted a great experiment. The experiment was…Could people live together in what it is called a democratic republic? In other words, no longer was the king going to be law. It's called rex lex. Where rex, the king, is lex, law. The king is the law. He has all the power. He can make all the laws.
We came back and we said, "No." In fact, we took from something called the Magna Carta. The Magna Carta was a great document. It challenged rex lex, and it said, "No, lex rex. The law is actually king." There is a right that even the king should have to live this way. Sometimes powerful people don't like to live ways they don't want to live, especially when they have problems they don't want to have and they have the power to do something about them. They like rex lex.
I'm asking for a friend."She's pregnant. What are my options?" Notice that my friend didn't talk to me about this particular problem before he made the decision to commit murder on his buddy, so there would be no problem as he moved into a more permanent relationship with his ex-friend's ex-wife. I think all of you guys who listen to this story are going to be like, "Todd, that's crazy. You said that story is true." Yeah, the story is true.
It's a story of a guy named David. He was king, and he laid eyes on Bathsheba, who was the wife of his good friend, Uriah, who was one of his mighty men (the Navy SEALs of his day). When David didn't know what to do when he found out somebody he didn't mean to get pregnant was pregnant, the king did just what he wanted because he could, because there was something in the way, something costly, something bothersome, something he was powerful over. He decided to commit murder to deal with his problem.
What are you going to do when your friend comes to you? They're, in a sense, king...maybe your friend is a girl. Doesn't matter. She's queen, and she can decide what she wants to do. I mean, "I'm pregnant. What do I do?" Here's what I would say to my friend. "What are you pregnant with?" Let's just start with that, because depending on what you're pregnant with we may or may not have a problem.
"Are you pregnant with a mouse? Are you pregnant with a gerbil? Are you pregnant with a panda?" Now some people might have a problem with that if you mess with that panda, but what is it that you're pregnant with? Let me just tell you something. I'm a dad, and every now and then people ask question, and before you answer the question they ask of you, you want to get a little bit more information.
I've been in this situation where I'm in one room, I can't see what going on in another room, and all of a sudden they go, "Ah!Dad can I kill this?" Now listen, before I answer that question, what do I need to do? I need to go, "Well what is it that you want to kill? Is it a cockroach? Yeah, man step on that thing. Kill it. Is it the neighbor's dog? Mmm." All right. "Is it your brother? Definitely come in here. What is it that you want to kill?"
Once you determine what it is that you want to kill then we have some answers, and we know which direction to go, and we know what your options are if you're pregnant. Let me just talk about this as we get going a little bit further. There are certain things we all like. There are certain things we all respect when we see things in other people. In addition to asking you what it is that you're pregnant with… By the way, I said, "What's the mother of the baby?"
"Well it's a human."
"What's the father of the baby?"
"It's a human."
Well throughout history, we're pretty sure that creatures create after their kind, so probably what she's pregnant with is, in fact, a human, and that something is alive. If it wasn't alive, we wouldn't need to deal with it, because it's not a problem, no?
Something is growing in you. It's alive. That's the problem that we're trying to deal with if we're looking at this as a problem instead of possibly an opportunity. "An opportunity to do what?" you might say. Well, an opportunity to do the things that we always see people do that make us respect them. Right? Have you ever thought about what it is that makes you look at somebody and go, "I admire that person"?
I had a friend of mine who actually had a chance to speak to a bunch of folks about a topic related to what I'm talking to you about tonight. She's basically making a case for her friends that human life matters. One of the things that she said was basically this. She said," There are really three things I always see in other people that make me respect them and admire them."
First, they inspire me when I see people put others ahead of themselves. When I see people do that it makes me really admire them." She used a great example. She talked about in 2009 there was a captain of a ship called the Costa Concordia. I don't know if you guys remember this or not, but he was the captain of a cruise ship. This cruise ship got a little bit too close to land and it tipped over. A bunch of people actually died.
That's not why the story made the news, because this cruise ship tipped a bunch of people died. It made the news because the captain of the Costa Concordia said when the ship tipped, he fell out of the boat into a life boat and that's why he abandoned ship. He was later court-martialed, and he was villainized universally. Why? There were people dependent upon him, folks that were under, if you will, his care, and he abandoned them, and he left them.
He didn't inspire anybody. He was villainized and charged and prosecuted. Three years later there was a guy that was flying a US Airways flight that took off from LaGuardia. Do you remember this story? A flock of geese jumped into one of the jet engines and shut this sucker down. Captain Sullenberger saw that he was losing power in both engines. He couldn't make it back to LaGuardia or any other near airport, so he said, "I'm not going to anything but try and land this thing," and he landed that plane safely on the Hudson.
When he got there in that Hudson, what happened was people in the back didn't realize the tail was submerged. Somebody opened that exit gate in the rear of the plane and water began to flood the plane that he had miraculously landed safely (it's called the miracle on the Hudson) and people then all started running towards the middle and the front where the two exit doors were there, except one person.
Captain Sullenberger made his way to the back. He made his way all the way to the back and made sure everybody got out the middle and the front. He made two laps up and down, water waist high, checking every seat to make sure everybody was out. Tom Hanks made a movie about this hero. It inspires us when we see somebody who looks at others in their care, and they put those others ahead of themselves. Doesn't that inspire you?
Secondly, we look at folks with that kind of perspective. They realize that the issue that they're dealing with right now isn't the end of the world. So they don't make impulsive, dramatic decisions, they don't add one problem to another problem. They're prudent, they're careful, and they're wise, and they stop, and they slow down.
One of the options that you have when somebody gets pregnant is to say, "I'm going to do the noble thing. I'm going to make them mine." I'm going to take him under my wing. I'm going to offer to be their husband. That may not be the wise thing to do. It's an option.
If you have two people that are reckless, that are prone to do what they want to do when they want to do it, who live in rebellion against God consistently, to try and then move them together in a marriage where those two people have never learned to love but have always been used to doing what they want to do when they want to do it, which is partly how they got where they are in the first place, then it may not be wise for them to get married.
It is an option that you can marry that person that you got pregnant, or if you are pregnant person you could marry the person that impregnated you, but that may not be the wisest thing to do. I'm inspired by people who have perspective, who can see outside the moment, who are individuals who are careful, not hasty and impulsive.
Thirdly, I'm inspired by people who do the right thing even when it's hard. I'm asking for a friend."She's pregnant. What are my options?" Let's walk back through some of this again. Let me just start by asking you, "What is that we're pregnant with? What's going on inside of you right now because if what is growing inside of you is not a human being, then no justification for what you might consider as an option…let's just call it abortion; that's what it is…no decision to abort something that is not a human is really a problem."
Like I said, if it's a panda, well, the Chinese are going to be ticked off. You guys are like, "Why does he say that?" Well, because did you know that every panda in the world is owned by the Chinese? You know that? They lease them out to zoos all around the world at a million dollars a year. So, the Chinese might be ticked off if you're going to abort a panda.
What is that she's pregnant with? If what is growing inside of her is not a human person, then no justification for abortion is necessary. If it's just tissue, then it's no problem. But, if it's a human being that she is pregnant with, then no justification is adequate. You have a situation right here where you have to have a little perspective. You don't you want to add one problem to another. You want to be noble. You want you do the right thing. You don't want to add to your mistakes.
"My friend," David, made a mistake. He added to the mistake murder. When I told you that story, every single person was thinking, "Why in the world would you do that?" Let me just be very tender here. I just want to say this as we go forward. I want to be really compassionate towards you tonight
Some people have said, "Man, Todd. When you talk about abortion and you mention the word murder, don't you know that, according to people who study this, one out of every three women alive will have an abortion one day, that one out of four women alive today under 45 have already had one?
"She got pregnant. There was some problem, man. Now she's done this, and you just equated this with murder? Is that what you just did? Is that how you told the David story and worked it back around? She was pregnant and didn't know what to do and thought his option was murder, and now you're dragging that from Uriah and what David did…which we all thought was wrong…to what that mom just did? Let me just say something. Some people would say you can't talk like that. You can't talk about it that way because you have to protect people from guilt and pain."
What I want to say to you is I'm not trying to create guilt and pain in you. I don't want to shield you from unnecessary pain as much as I want to keep you from that which you need to understand, which will bring about necessary healing. Until you understand what you may have been a part of or might be about to be a part of you can't feel bad about it, you can't deal with it.
You are going to feel it for a long time, but you may not feel it the way you need to if you keep telling yourself it's something that it's not. Let's just be clear. If it's just a clump of cells, then we don't have a problem. Day one. The moment that a sperm fertilizes an egg, at that particular moment, every chromosome, all the DNA, everything that will be present in that human when they are 80 years old is present immediately after the conception happens. It is unique human life at the moment of conception.
Let me just say this. One of the things that we know is that sometimes when people can't get pregnant, they go to a life specialist (an in vitro fertilizing professional) who is going to sit there and try and figure out when they have something they can implant inside of you that will lead to a human being. What is that thing? That thing is a fertilized egg.
They don't say, "We're not really sure if it's going to be three weeks before it has a heartbeat or six weeks before it has a full sense of touch and brain waves and its mouth and lips are there and fingers are there or at seventeen weeks it has a sense of hearing and memory." No. They know they have a human life. The second there is a fertilized egg it's human life, and they go, "Now we can implant that in you. If it is cared for and protected it will lead to a human life."
We know when life begins. It's not just a clump of cells. Or should I say this way? It is a clump of cells, just like you and I are a clump of cells. That's what a human being is, right? It is an ordered assembly of cells. You might say, "Well Todd, that newborn baby doesn't look very much like a human." I'm going to tell you that fertilized egg looks exactly like every human ever looked exactly at that human's age of development. "She's pregnant. What are my options?" "What is she pregnant with?"
Sometimes when folks are talking about this topic, they just say, "Well look, there's a couple of things that are necessary for you to really have a sense of responsibility towards that. Okay, it's a human being, but it's not a human person, and because it's not a person it doesn't get all the rights that persons should get."
I go, "Well, what makes you say it's not a person?" I've already talked about one of them. They go, "It doesn't look like a human," and I've said, "No, no. It looks like every human looked at that particular age of development." A 4-year-old doesn't look like a 40-year-old, but we all agree a 4-year-old is just a 40-year-old in a different life stage. It is a human being, and it is filled with dignity and value, and it is worth protecting because it's a human person.
Same thing true when it's a zygote or an embryo or a fetus. Fetus in Latin literally means that which is brought forth. Embryo just means fruit of the womb. They're just words that we use. The reason we sometimes use words is because we want to protect people from guilt and shame. What I'm going to tell you is I don't want people to feel guilt and shame, but I also don't want to protect them from that which is going to bring them necessary healing.
Until you know what you've done, until you know that there's a problem, you cannot deal with the problem and move towards a solution. "Blessed are the poor in spirit…" People who understand what they've been a part of and understand what they've been doing. It helps clarify what your options are.
Some would say it's not a person because of its size. Let's just talk about that. In fact, I want to give you a little acronym. A simple way for you to remember when you are talking to a friend who says, "Man, I think she's pregnant," or, "Hey, I think I'm pregnant. What are my options?" You want to think about SLED. You give it the SLED test.
1._ Size_. People go, "Well it's not probably a person because of its size. It's not as big. It doesn't look like…" I've already talked about that. It looks exactly like every human being looks like at that particular part. By the way, a newborn doesn't look like a toddler, a toddler doesn't look like a child, a child doesn't look like a teenager, and teenager doesn't look somebody who is 50. The size of something does not determine its personhood. All of the genetic information, 100 percent, that exists in me was present when I was a zygote. Size does not determine dignity and value.
2._ Level of development. Some people would say, "Well not just size, because we think a 2-year-old is as valuable as a 4-year-old. What about the level of development?" In fact, there is a guy named Peter Singer who is a philosophy professor at Princeton who makes the case that we shouldn't give any dignity to somebody unless they're rational, conscious, and self-aware. In fact, he believes in what is called _infanticide. Up until several years of age you should be able to make a decision about whether you want to keep a child.
Frankly, he's more consistent than many other people who, because they hide behind certain language and certain terms, think there are more options with what you should say or what you might consider when you find out that she might be pregnant. I'm asking for a friend. Peter Singer says, "I don't care if she's pregnant. I don't care if the baby was born. Until that baby is rational, conscious, and self-aware, it isn't a dignified human person."
I want you to think about that. When you start to talk about something that is small… The moment that the one-celled human embryo begins to exist, it doesn't have an organ that allows it to think. I've mentioned to you that that sense of memory, or the brain, isn't really developed until about six weeks. So those first six weeks…if you're lucky enough to find out if you're pregnant during those first six weeks…you might think, "Well it's not a human yet."
I would tell you it's completely human, and everything that is there that will be there when that human is 80 is there right then. It just hasn't developed. Now it's different than an amoeba. An amoeba isn't something that will ever be rational, conscious or self-aware because of what it is, not because of how old it is.
Children are not rational. Children are not often self-aware. Children aren't conscious of their surroundings. Two-year-olds aren't people that still, in their level of development, have not yet developed all the things that we have when we walk in this room tonight. Yet, nobody in this room would side with Peter Singer. Yet, Peter Singer in many ways is scientifically more consistent, although he's philosophically way off base.
Peter Singer said, "I'll tell you what your options are. Not just up until that child is born, but I'll tell you what your options are up until we think the child is rational and conscious and self-aware." Size doesn't determine dignity, and level of development doesn't determine dignity.
3._ Environment,_ They would say, "Well it's not really human because that human lives inside of the mother. It's in the wrong location." We don't think that somebody becomes less human when they leave the earth's atmosphere and go into orbit. We don't think somebody becomes less human when they put on scuba gear and go underwater. We go, "No, it's still a human. Even though it's in a different environment." Environment doesn't determine whether or not somebody is human.
4._ Degree of dependence._ "Then what about this one Todd? What about degree of dependence?" A child is dependent. In fact one of the things that I would say, as we look at and go back to our example of Captain Sullenberger, is the more something is dependent, the more something is needy, the more something requires care and attention, the more we put responsibilities on the individual who was stewarded the care of that individual.
If a mother decides to go to the roller skating party on Thursday night and she leaves a 6-month-old at home alone, there's going to be a different response from our government then if she leaves to go to a roller skating Thursday night and she leaves an 18-year-old at home. The greater the level of dependency, or the degree of dependency that's in somebody, what should be more true is the greater the care that we give to them. Some people go, "Well Todd, you can say all this all that you want, but I am king. I believe in a woman's right to choose, so I have options."
All I will say when somebody says that, "I believe in a woman's right to choose," is I go, "That's a statement that needs to be finished. What do you mean you believe in a woman's right to choose? That's not even a sentence. You believe you in woman's right to choose what? Her nail color? I'm all in. What job she wants? I'm all in. What she wants to spend $800 for and call a purse? I'm all in."
A woman has a right to choose. She can do whatever she wants, but does a woman have a right to choose to kill her 6-month-old? Does she have a right to choose to kill a baby that makes her uncomfortable or costs too much or disrupts the life she always dreamed of? I might say to you, "Do you believe in a right of a man to take?" Take what? Take a chance? Take his dog to the park? Take a nap? Sure. Do you believe in a man's right to take a woman's dignity? Do you believe Harvey Weinstein had the right to take? Me too, neither.
Finish your sentence. We don't believe that people have a right to choose anything they want to choose. Well hey, I wouldn't choose that, but I'm going to let her chose that. Really? Let me ask you a question. What if somebody came to you and said they were going to rape somebody else? I know you wouldn't rape somebody, but what if somebody was going to rape somebody else?
Would you go, "I'm going to do everything I can to keep them from doing it?" Yeah. Would you say that if they go ahead and do it there are already laws in place to keep them from doing it again, there are already consequences and significant ones? You bet you would. The same thing is true of you might not take someone's life, and you just don't think you should let somebody else. There should be laws in place.
The question is, "What is she pregnant with, man?" See, at the end of the day you have to realize that this topic that we're talking about, your view on abortion, is not just a personal choice you're making about a child. It is a declaration you're making about who your god is. I'm not talking about Bible verses that talk about the dignity of human life. I'm not talking about the Bible verses that talk about that God knows us in our womb, and he's seen us from the moment that we were conceived.
I'm talking about what you're going to say at that particular moment. "I don't really care about that child. I don't really care about anybody but me. So what are my options, because I'm going to choose what I want to choose?" Listen, we don't let people kill people for all the reasons that are always offered when we talk about this thing called abortion.
We let people kill people because they're in the way, they're costly, or it's a privacy issue. "I have a right to my own body." The person had a tragic beginning because they remind me of a terrible event that happened earlier in my year. "I don't want this person to live." Listen, let me just talk about this because some people may, "Todd, even the cases of rape?"
Let's just all agree that rape is awful. We have to do everything we can to care for women who have been raped. We have to be serious about significantly increasing the consequences of men who rape women. Do you believe we should kill the child because of the sin of the father? What is the rape victim pregnant with? What inspires you?
What inspires me are people that put others ahead of themselves, who have perspective and who do the right the thing even when it's hard. So if you're asking for a friend, what do you do? You have to think about what it is. Let me just take just a moment. I'm going to show you some hard stuff. I'm not going to show you some hard stuff because I want to, again, have you experience unnecessary pain, but because I want to keep you from keep you from missing out on necessary healing.
I want to keep you from being persuaded by stories and questions and illustrations that aren't true. There have always been human-rights atrocities. Here's a picture of two of the more well known ones. Of a person that because of his color and race was treated as chattel, was treated as somebody that he wasn't owned. Actually I want to show the slide of the three people up here first. The African American slave, the victim of the Nazi Holocaust, and then you're also going to see the child in the womb.
There have always been victims of human-rights offenses. The reason that they've been victims, it'll come up in just a moment, is because of the way that they were described. They were seen as less then human. They were whipped, they were imprisoned because of their ethnicity, their color, their race, or their stage of development, or how they're viewed as a person. Every human-right injustice that's ever happened dehumanizes the innocent victim and says, "That's not a human. They're not human. It's not human. What are our options?"
The picture that was up here a little bit ago was of a young man whose name is Emmett Till. Emmett Till actually just was exhumed and had his casket moved to the African-American Smithsonian museum in DC. The reason it did was because Emmett Till became a very famous individual in 1955 in a way that wasn't at all glamorous.
Emmett Till was from Chicago. He went down to visit some relatives in Dixie, and when he was down there, there was a woman Carolyn Bryant who accused him of wolf-whistling her, grabbing her aggressively, and actually thrusting himself upon her. She later denied that that ever happened, but her husband Roy Bryant and his buddy J.W. Milam took him that night and beat him to death then threw him into the Tallahatchie River. They tied him with barbed wire to a cotton-gin fan, threw him in the river, and left him there to decompose.
It took several days for them to find him, and when they found him they took his body and sent it body back to Chicago. His mother, Mamie Till, decided to have an open-casket funeral. Now brace yourself. In 1955, JET magazine went ahead and ran this picture I'm about to show you of Emmett Till because she wanted to awaken the nation to the horrors of dehumanizing somebody simply because of somebody else not thinking they're valuable.
This is the picture of Emmett Till that began to change the consciousness of America. Both eyes were gouged out, there was a bullet hole to the head, he was severely beaten, and left for dead. She just said, "You need to realize that this is what they're doing to people," because they put him in the category that they say, "Those people don't matter." I'm going to show you in just a second very quickly some pictures, because pictures communicate truth.
If your buddy comes to you and says, "I think my girlfriend might be pregnant," or if your girlfriend comes and says, "I think I might be pregnant. What are my options?" you have to ask, "What are you pregnant with, sweetie? Because if it's a human life, I don't care how costly it is for you to bear it. I don't really care how much it's going to be in the way of your perfect plans. I don't care what you think about what it reminds you of. I don't care about your privacy issue. I don't care about what you want. I don't care about the tragic beginning. Have some perspective. What's being aborted is a human life."
Now listen, if you are not comfortable with certain images, I don't put these up to shock you, I put these up to teach you, just like Mamie Till did. I'm going to put five images in five seconds. They're going to fly by. This is what's being aborted. It's a precious human person. "What are my options?" Your options are to be heroic. Your options are not to make another problem. Your options aren't to say, "Rex lex, baby. I'm king." Your options are to really acknowledge that maybe you've been a part of something that you never thought you'd want to be a part of.
See, because some of you in this room might know that you've made a decision already to terminate a pregnancy, and the moment you did you became unpregnant, but you know every single year when that child's birthday would be. You look at other kids, and you go that child's about 6; that's how old my child would be. You became unpregnant, but you're not an un-mom, and you know that. You carry that weight around with you, and I don't want you to carry that weight around anymore.
I want you to know something. There's a God who loves you, and he's not mad at you, and he wants to heal you. There's a verse in Isaiah 49 that says this, "But Zion…" That's the name for Israel. The people that God loves. "…said, 'The LORD has forsaken me, and the Lord has forgotten me.'" Then, Isaiah the prophet says this, "Can a woman forget her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb?" Isaiah says, "Oh yeah."
Almost 60 million Americans have since 1973. Hundreds of women in this room, hundreds of men in this room, have been a part of forgetting precious unborn human persons that they were given stewardship over. Moms can forget. Dads can forget. They can find convenient words and convenient reasons to maybe deal with it in a way that doesn't make them feel bad, but we need to realize exactly what's going on here. "Even these may forget…" but this is what God says, "…but I will not forget you."
Verse 16 says, "Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands…" The things that are hindering you, the troubles, the protection you need, they're continually before me, and I love you. I want you to know this, Proverbs 28:13 says this. "He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper…" You may think that this is a secret you can take with you and that you can go forward with, but he who conceals his transgressions will not prosper. "…but he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion."
I'm going to give you a testimony from my friend David, the one who didn't seek good counsel when he found out she was pregnant and ended up participating in a murder. This is what he says in Psalm 32. He says, "…how blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered."
"How blessed is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity…" Which means just to put upon, to place upon. "… [their sin] and in whose spirit there is no deceit." How blessed is that man? David says, "That's not me. I know exactly what I did. Even though I'm king, even though I can cover that up, I can't cover it up inside of me. I carry the weight of my decision with me."
"When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me…" The hand of his conscious, the hand of God. "…My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer." He just rests, and he sits in that pain.
He said, "I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, 'I will confess my transgressions to the LORD'; and You forgave the guilt of my sin." That's what God wants you to hear tonight. Listen, we all make decisions without perspective. We've all rebelled against God. All of us, like sheep, have gone astray. Hundreds of us in this room have made a decision to deal with an unwanted pregnancy in a way that we look back, and we just go, "You know, I just didn't have perspective. I can't ever tell anybody that even though I never really stop thinking about it."
You have a God who is here who's telling you to tell me. Tell me you know exactly what you did. Tell me you know that all the rhetoric and all the language that you've used and you were told about it being safe, that it's not safe. That you carry it with you everywhere you go, and that you need forgiveness.
This is what he says. "Therefore, let everyone who is godly pray to You in a time when You may be found; surely in a flood of great waters they will not reach him." Oh, David says, "You are my hiding place; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with songs of deliverance." It's why we sing these songs. We want you to know it doesn't matter what you've done, there's a God who wants to forgive you. You're pregnant; what are your options?
Your options are you can keep that child and you can find folks who will support you and care for you. You can be can be courageous and just say, "Hey I'm going to be there. I'm going to alter my life plans. I'm going to be a mom. I may not be the husband of my baby's mother, but I'm going to provide for that woman."
We have examples here at Watermark of a godly man who made a decision early in his life to be intimate with a woman who wasn't his wife. It lead to a child they courageously brought to bear. He continues to have a good relationship with the mother, care for the child, and is happily married, and they're both members here. You can make the courageous decision to give the child up for adoption. Only 2 percent of all unwanted pregnancies, unplanned pregnancies, end up in adoption. You can make that courageous decision.
Let me tell you a story. Two years ago, right here, March of 2016, sweet little Dominique shows up here. This is a picture of Dominique. She was 20 years old at the time. She came down, actually, with her sister because she wanted somebody to pray for her sister. She gets connected with some friends, and it turns out she's about to go on spring break. She tells these friends, "I probably shouldn't go on spring break because the people who go on spring break are the wrong playmates, and that's the wrong playground." They encouraged her not to go, but she went ahead and went anyway, and three or four weeks after she went she found out that she was pregnant.
Dominique came back. She already had a 3-year-old, and now she's pregnant again. She was at a point where she didn't feel like she could handle another child. So she was abortion determined. She made three different appointments with Planned Parenthood that weren't there to help plan her parenthood but were there to terminate the life of her precious unborn human child.
She kept talking with Liz and Traci, her two friends she met at The Porch. They did an amazing job of just walking alongside her and just helping her think through what that growing thing inside of her was. It was everything she is, just 20 years younger. She had made a bad decision, but now we don't want to make another bad decision. Your bad decision shouldn't affect the life of your child.
Dominique kept listening, and eventually she got connected to a pregnancy resource center and others around here who began to care for her through her pregnancy. She didn't really find anybody, though, in an adoption agency that she resonated with. We've said this before, and I'm going to say it again. Let me tell you what one of your options is going to always be as long as God's people are here at Watermark.
If you get pregnant, one of your options is to place that child with us in the care of a godly, loving couple.We introduced Dominique to Ally, who had made a decision, similar to the one that Dominique was about to make. Ally and Ryan, who are members here, just said, "Hey Dominique, we'd love to take your child. We'd love to support you. We'd love to bring that child up." Twenty months ago, little Everett was born.
That precious unborn human person is now 20-month-old Everett Wall. Dominique's story isn't over. Dominique continued to hang out with us here. Dominique's a member of Watermark. She's here. She's in community. A couple of months ago, I had the privilege with Ryan and Ally to be in the water and just celebrate Dominique's profession of life and the forgiveness and the freedom that comes to her and anybody who seeks our gracious King.
"Hey man, I'm pregnant. I'm asking for a friend. What are my options?" Your options are to be heroic or to enter into a horror that even if nobody knows about it, you're going to know about it the rest of your days. It's not a clump of cells; it is human, and God has given you stewardship over it.
You have a chance to not make another bad decision. You might even have a chance to provide for another couple who's praying for an opportunity to love a child like yours, a chance for that child to be given to that couple and raised by them and loved by them. You have a chance to do the hard thing: live with perspective and put others in front of yourself.
We're going to sing a song and then I'm going to come back up and I'm going to tell you that there are a bunch of men and women here tonight. We have two ministries. One of them is Someone Cares and one of them is called Forgotten Fathers. Someone Cares is a ministry of women who have made an abortion decision. They would love to sit with you and explain to you the healing and the forgiveness that they have found. They would love for you to know what they now know and to find the freedom that they have found.
There are guys who have made the decision to be a part of an abortion decision who have processed that and have found forgiveness and hope and reconciliation, just like I have for my sins. They'd love to meet with you. We'd love to share with you the hope that we have. Even if you don't need it right now, there's going to be a day that a friend is going to need that encouragement. Know that someone cares and they're not forgotten and that God forgives.
Father, I pray that my friends in this room would be advocates for life. I pray that if a friend comes and says, "Hey, I'm pregnant. I'm asking what my options are," that they would set them down. They would say, "Well, let me just tell you. Let's first of all figure out what it is that you're pregnant with." They would love them, and they would care of them.
They would remind them that they haven't made an unforgiveable decision by making the mistake of bringing a child into life apart from a covenant marriage relationship. A friend that could remind them that there's a God who's good who can take what we intended for evil and turn it into something glorious and beautiful…that's what our God does; he makes beauty from ashes…who can encourage them.
Father, I pray for anybody in this room who has listened tonight and the thing they said they'd never think about again, they were forced to think about one more time. Lord, I don't want them to experience unnecessary pain, but I certainly don't want them to miss necessary healing.
So, Lord, as they're convicted of what they've been a part of, would they be comforted with who you are and what you are a part of that they might be forgiven, would they understand the glory of the cross, would they understand the kindness of God, the one who understands that humans are frail and live without perspectives and act like they are king when they are not, and that there is a God who does hard things, who does put others ahead of him, who went to a cross he didn't deserve and died a death he didn't need to die that they might receive the forgiveness that they need.
Father would you bring healing to this room tonight? We thank you, Father, that when we seek you, you answer us. That you're the God of comfort and the God of grace. Would you remind us of that now through song? Amen.