Author's Note

Author’s Note

As I developed the characters in The Intrusion, I believed it was vital for this novel to send a strong pro-life message. You see, for me, an infertile woman who is incapable of conceiving without the aid of a doctor and a slew of other modern medical miracles, it was a cinch to be pro-life. It was truly a no-brainer. Of course ending a pregnancy snuffs out a life. I mourned and lamented the loss of those innocent babies often as I struggled to conceive a child of my own. Endless invitations to baby showers heightened the sorrow. Month after month passed without conception. A much anticipated treatment cycle would fail. Hopelessness crept in and proceeded to transform itself, ever so slowly, into bitterness. Condemnation. Hard-hearted judgment.

It never really occurred to me that this spiritual cancer had taken root in my heart. When the subject came up I freely gave my opinion, not only from a political and spiritual standpoint, but at times I would proceed to freely assassinate the character of any woman who would choose such a thing.  I finally did conceive (twins!) and endured an incredibly difficult pregnancy. Terbutaline pumps, bed rest, at-home fetal monitoring and even the mention of therapeutic abortion were a daily reality. Spiritually, I dug my self-righteous heels in deeper still.  Just look what torment I was willing to endure for the lives battling to survive inside of me. If I was prepared to go to such lengths, what kind of woman would choose to end the life of her own child?

Do any of you have mental snapshots of yourselves from the past that simply make you cringe? I am afraid that I have more than my fair share. God does use those moments to humble us, and if we allow him, to teach us to reflect and learn from our past behavior. When my twins were around two, I attended a Bible study that met in the homes of some women I did not know well. Each week I showed up, Bible in hand. My big, black Bible. The one that was completely covered with stickers screaming slogans such as Abortion is Homicide. Did I mention that it was big?

Several weeks into the study it was time for a lovely woman named Jaime to speak. By lovely, I mean that she was actually employed as a professional Cinderella. Not only was she fairy-tale stunning, she was warm, kind and quite a character. Of all the women who attended the study she was the one I was most drawn to and enjoyed conversing with. Notebook in hand, I happily anticipated the wisdom that Jaime had to impart. I was not prepared when she dropped the bomb that not only had she had an abortion, but also a second.

Something broke in me that night as Jaime spoke. Besides the fact that had she been desperate enough to have an abortion, I was forced to put a face to the act that I had spoken about with such flippancy. When I found out that she not only attended church at the time but taught Sunday school, I was floored. Tearfully, she explained that she was more afraid of being found out and judged by her fellow church members than she was of ending her pregnancy. I was filled with shame. How convenient it was for me to hone in on the one sin that I was pretty much assured of never committing. It was quite easy to sit on my spiritual high horse and claim that I would never do such a thing. Instantly, my mind was flooded with scenes from my own past, both before I had yielded my heart to Christ, and after. Drunkenness, drug abuse, lies and rebellion, promiscuity, gossip and slander made the short list. It occurred to me that perhaps infertility had been God’s grace for me, or I also might have made a decision to enter a clinic as Jaime and countless others had done. The fact is that on our own we are all wretched sinners, desperately in need of the grace of God.

Am I still pro-life? Absolutely. Is abortion murder? I believe that it is. However, now I am not only concerned for the pregnant mothers who enter abortion mills every day. I care deeply for the broken women who walk back out those doors and live with that decision for the rest of their lives. I no longer pontificate about the evils of this sin or that, or focus on the ugliness of any particular vice. Instead I focus on the grace of God and marvel that God came to seek and to save us.