Friday, January 23, 2009

Remember the Silent

Open your mouth for the speechless, In the cause of all who are appointed to die.

With the "sanctity of human life week", approaching, I've been doing some reflecting on what it means to be pro-life.

For me, at least.

I've been involved in pro-life and anti abortion endeavors in Mongolia for the past 9 years or so. In the beginning, my main job was to inform the Christians here that abortion is wrong. Mongolia is different from America in that there is no pro-life/pro-choice influences or political influences to convince people that abortion is good/bad. Most people just go along with it because of the high poverty rates and lack of good prenatal medical care.

Once I began educating people, I was amazed to see the doors of opportunity swing wide open. No one, it seemed was against me or the anti-abortion message. We've seen churches, high schools, universities and hospitals open up and receive, wide-eyed, the truth that there is life before birth. Hundreds of babies have been saved as thousands have been reached through seminars, lectures, and the media. And the numbers are increasing. I've lost count of the people who have come up to me and said that they chose to have their baby because of a lecture they once heard, or because they read Hetee's poem in a hospital waiting room.

In Mongolia, the abortion rate is at least twice as high as the birth rate, or so I'm told. I think it is much higher. Finding solid numbers regarding abortion rates are always tricky because not many women like to talk about that sort of thing. Hospitals don't always register the right numbers because it's a great way for the abortionists to get rich off the books. Either way, abortion in Mongolia is rampant. It is usually sought out by the mothers but in some cases performed without her consent then is followed by unwarranted birth control as a means of "helping" her to have a better life. I'm counseling one such mother now. She was 7 months when her doctor gave her something to kill her 7 month-old baby. She's pregnant again, with twins, and terrified of going near a hospital. I'm still seething about that one.

Anyway, like I said before, I've encountered very little opposition from the Mongolian people in general. I have, however, had a few remarks from Americans that I never quite understood. Remarks like, "Can't we do more to help the women?" and "You need to offer the women alternatives to abortion" etc, etc.

Now, much of what I do and have done in the past is to financially or physically help the women or young families faced with an unwanted or unplanned pregnancy. We help with food, vitamins and supplements, counseling, birth classes and anything else we can.

I think that sometimes we choose to make things a lot more complicated than they have to be. I remember a few years ago, someone told me that I wasn't doing enough, that I needed to "offer those poor women more alternatives". That it wasn't enough just to tell them that abortion was wrong.

Right away I became discouraged. I looked at my lack of ability to provide for their needs. I looked at my feeble human hands, my inadequacies, my lack of money and resources and quickly became depressed. It was my husband who led me back to the Scriptures and reminded me to just open my mouth and speak up for the unborn. I didn't have to carry anyone's load. I didn't owe them anything for keeping their baby. God would take care of them and reward them for their obedience. And since then I've seen this to be true over and over again.

I realize that to some these statements may sound flippant, even callous. Please understand that I do have a special place in my heart for the girls and women faced with an abortion decision. I still help these women in the many ways mentioned above. But it felt good to know that when the resources ran out, as they still often do, it doesn't have to stop me from proclaiming the truth. I don't need a back up plan. What it all comes down to is me opening my mouth and speaking out for those who are not able to defend themselves.

So, if you're a pro-lifer and you're feeling overwhelmed by the task of convincing people that abortion is wrong, just remember to keep it simple. Pray for them. Then speak to them. Show them pictures of fetal development, evidence of life in the womb. Then let them choose. If you can do more, like help a mother who lives in poverty then by all means, please do. But whatever you do, don't be silent. Speak out, and focus on saving one life at a time. God predestined that life. He can take care of the rest.

My thoughts are a jumbled mess right now and I am feeling and thinking so much more than what I am able to put into this post at the moment. A friend and fellow pro-lifer has written a great piece on her blog. Please check out Daja's thoughts on the subject and don't forget to pray for the women in your life who have gone through an abortion in the past or who are being faced with a difficult decision today.


Gombojav Tribe said...

Thank you for the link, Melanie! And I'm going to link to your post, too. It's really good to have your perspective!

Lady Dorothy said...

Thank you, Melanie, for writing this. Your husband was very wise in his counsel.

I spent many years trying to be other people's savior. It wore me out. It distressed me. That job had already been taken by Someone who was actually capable of it! When I finally came to the realization that all I had to do was what God had called me to do, a huge burden was lifted!

No, we don't owe anyone anything for obeying God. He already has those blessings lined up and ready to deliver!

Thank you again for reminding us that sometimes all God has asked is that we speak up. And we don't always have to have an answer to all the other "stuff".

Sue said...

That was a beautiful post. It wasn't jumbled at all. I could really see your loving heart for the Mongolian women. Thank you for sharing about your incredible ministry to women in Mongolia.

Cheri said...

I posted on this issue today in relation to Pres. Obama's change in abortion policy and linked back to your article as well.

Praying for your ministry.

Marnie said...

You are doing an awesome job and it is evident that you are right where the Lord wants you to be. Don't let anyone get you feeling discouraged. Sometimes people mean well in giving advise, but don't fully understand until they are in the trenches themselves.

I have always been Pro-Life and very verbal about my beliefs. But I haven't had a lot of hands on experience like you have. Keep up the good fight and don't take on more than God actually gives you.

Your husbands counsel was very wise. You are blessed to have that.

Marnie said...

I linked to your post on my blog too. ~Marnie

Cinnamon said...

I'm so glad the Lord has encouraged you to keep on. What a good reminder to me to not carry any burden alone but to take it to the Lord. He will provide!


Mongapore said...

Would you mind posting some of Hetee's poems, please? I'd love to read them!

Marnie said...

Melanie, it's me again...I was wondering if there are any well trained midwives in Mongolia? You said that good health care is hard to come by and I was wondering if midwives were even an option. The midwives here that I know are very knowledgeable and able to handle difficult situations. Maybe some ladies that you know would be interested in getting training. Maybe there are correspondence courses available. Just thinking aloud I guess...

Anonymous said...

Thank you for loving the unborn.