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Rape, Abortion and Adoption: Journal of a Father

Adoption

Rape, Abortion and Adoption: Journal of a Father

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A very common scenario that is mentioned when I discuss abortion is the issue of rape. I hear questions like, “How could you expect a woman to bear the child that was conceived in rape?” I have found myself in the last few days in a unique position to address this issue. And I will begin by saying, I hate rape. I hate how it perverts the beauty of sex as God intended it. I hate how it destroys the lives of women and their loved ones. And I hate that a man would ever sin so boldly against God and against another human being.

The uncommon scenario that I found myself in recently began months ago as my wife and I began the adoption process for the second time. The months of paperwork, phone calls, and plans led me to Ethiopia to attend court for the adoption of two children. I write this from my hotel in the capital of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa. In a completely unexpected turn of events, I found myself sitting in front of the mother of one of the children I was just given custody to in an Ethiopian court. She was young, pretty, kind. I was already in tears just talking to the mother of my baby. She gave him the name Spain because he was born on the day that Spain won the World Cup. This unexpected conversation took my tears to sobs as I asked about his father. I was told she did not know the father as she had been raped.

Why was I sobbing? You may think because I was not expecting to have a child who had been born of the result of such a terrible thing. Maybe you think it makes him somehow less worthy to be adopted. You would be wrong. It was actually quite the opposite. Here is a section of my journal that I penned mere minutes after our meeting:

“I asked her about the father and the interpreter told me she did not know who he was, she had been raped. It was quite a blow. A few moments before I knew nothing of my son’s birth. Now I was sitting in front of his mother, a young rape victim…I am so glad we have the opportunity to raise a boy who is one of the neediest. I am so proud of her for doing what was right. I am so sad for her pain. But when she left she seemed happy. Her concern was for her child and now he was being taken care of.”

You see I hate rape, but I do not hate children.  And abortion is not killing rape.  It does not change what has happened nor bring justice for the woman wronged.  Abortion is murder and murder is hatred, hatred against a baby who was innocent in the matter.  Spain is not dirty because his mother was raped.  He is not less of a human nor created less in the image of God (Genesis 1:27).  He is my son.  And I love him.  And I want to raise him, no matter how he was conceived.

Allow our story to challenge you.  Spain’s mother had a lot of options.  I do not know if a ‘legal, safe abortion’ was one of them.  But my other son was abandoned by his mother the day after he was born, a similar death sentence.  Instead, she chose to bring this child to term, to take him to an orphanage, and then to walk through the steps to allow us to adopt him.  Then she met with me, she did not have to do that, she chose to.  And amidst all of the hardship, she was concerned for the life of her child.  And she left happy.

Consider what Paul wrote to the Philippians:

Philippians 2:5-8 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,  but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

God calls all of us to be like Christ.  And Christ ‘made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant…he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death.’  So, yes.  I do ask a woman who has been raped to bear the child.  Not because I long to force my opinion on others.  But instead because killing the child is wrong.  It is disobedience to God and it is self-seeking.  But oddly enough, this self-seeking action will not bring joy.  Joy comes in obedience, humility, and sacrifice.  I have witnessed this first-person in the life of this young mother.  And it is this joy I wish for all women.

Let us stop assuming that we know what is best for these women and start listening to God.  Let us stop thinking that the death of a child could ever correct the evils of another sin.  Let us stop saying that nine months is too much to ask.  Let us fix our eyes on Christ who gave for us his life.  Let us support women and call them to do what is right.  And let us raise these children as our own.

28 Comments

  1. Charlie

    A very powerful testimony Dave and correct conclusions. Thanks be to God who has given you the grace to serve the poorest of the poor in such remarkable ways.

    Reply
    • Miyuki

      Most of the women here will talk about it being a woman vs man thing. As a woman, I take huge issue with this. As a woman, I don’t agree with abortion and hidnig behind it being a woman’s issue is not accurately speaking on behalf of women. I am not militant about it but I can’t in a million years think killing so called cells that have heartbeats and toes while inside my body is any different than giving birth and throwing the baby off of a bridge to me where the baby is located in its development while in a gestational state is a logistics issue and to me not about choice. For me it isn’t even a religious issue it just seems like common sense.I’ve personally seen children thrive who have been born at 26 weeks. How about if two weeks earlier they were aborted (legal in some areas). I get a little sick thinking about what that means.

      Reply
  2. Christina

    WOW!! I have always felt this way in my heart, but so difficult for so many to grasp (even Christians). Thank for sharing this AWESOME testimony to God’s grace, faithfulness and everlasting LOVE!!

    Reply
  3. cost of abortion

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    Reply
  4. Ken

    Dave,

    I have never said this but wanted to many times. I LOVE you and Stacey for adopting these two beautiful people and giving them a chance to make it!

    To the point of your post here, however, you and I would never support a law that forces a women to abort a baby that might be down syndrome or fatally deformed or of rape origins, why would we support a law that would prevent her from having that same comtrol should she decide it was best for her health, her family, or the child to mercifully terminate that pregnancy?

    As your blog entry shows, these are not cut and dry, easy cheesy one size fits all issues. We need to learn to TRUST WOMEN. The journey to become a mother, when , if, and how often, is a deeply personal one into which government, religion and social constructs ought not tread unless invited by that individual.

    Reply
  5. Stephenie

    Thanks for sharing this brief insight. It is so true the Lord blesses obedience. He will walk with and love and care for a woman through the most difficult of circumstances! And how blessed it is for this particular woman to be at ease and peace knowing her son is taken care of.

    Reply
    • Jerold

      i got my birth control from plepnanarent hood. i also got minors consent medical to help pay for my health during my pregnancy. thier are so many places you can go to wen you are having sex to get birth contro for free and i wish i knew about it all before. getting health checks during your pregnancy is really important for yor childs health and especially yours too!

      Reply
  6. Dave

    Ken, I appreciate your kind words.

    Two quick responses as it is late.
    1. The Bible says, “Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom will be delivered” Proverbs 28:26. The truth is, I don’t trust women, or men. I don’t trust us to make a wise decision with the life of another. I don’t trust my own mind. In my mind I might think that there are cases where abortion could be justified. And I would be a fool to trust that. Trust God Ken.

    2. The Bible also says, “the mercy of the wicked is cruel” Proverbs 12:10. Any time someone kills in the name of mercy they are revealing this passage to be true. You cannot violate God’s commands and be merciful. You cannot kill a child and be merciful. It is cruel.

    I know that does not deal with all of the issues, but I am sick and it is late. I pray that you see my heart in this post. I love my kids. I love children. And abortion is hatred of children. I will never support something that is hatred of children.

    Also, FYI. This is a moderated forum. That means no ones posts are posted to the public unless one of the moderators approves it. I have not read through the rest of your comments, but I will. And those that I (or one of the other moderators) consider to be helpful to the conversation will be approved and addressed. Please be patient, we are only human.

    Reply
    • Aline Moore

      Not all raped or sexually abused women can have the attitude of Spain’s mom. As a woman and victim I feel really disrespected by this post.

      I do not agree with abortion, but having the government or the church involved in this decision is not the solution for the “sins” either. Countries that don’t allow abortion are full of illegal clinics, and the procedure is still being done but in much worse conditions.

      If I got pregnant from a rape I don’t know what I would do, If I decided that I did not have the strength and mental health to go through with this pregnancy I would appreciate having the option and not being judged for it.

      Your words are beautiful. Your action is also beautiful. But in a beautiful way you are judging women that choose differently from Spain’s mom, and even though you hate rape you will never know what it is to loose all of your confidence, self-esteem, good nights of sleep, etc. due to an episode like that.

      Yes, you are allowed to speak out your opinion, but the fact that you hate rape, and that you appreciate what Spain’s mom did should be enough. Don’t assume that every woman could do what she did. She is brave, and courageous, and would still be if she had decided to have an abortion and take care of her mental health.

      Reply
      • Dave

        @Aline – First of all I truly am so sorry that you have been abused. And I pray that you will be able to see the difference between disagreement and disrespect. I do in fact believe that Spain’s mom not only did the courageous thing, but the right thing. No matter how it feels, no matter what the law, abortion is killing a child. And it is wrong. Not because I have some right to determine objective right and wrong for the world, but because God does. You can point out my weaknesses and lack of personal experiences and you are right. But God is not lacking in knowledge, experience or wisdom. And he filled a whole book with truth so that we can understand that which is beyond us.

        My pastor, Ryan Fullerton, preached a sermon dealing with what the Bible says about the issue of abortion I would recommend it. Click HERE to listen. You have to understand though, that if God has said that it is wrong, it is NOT what is best for the woman, either. According to God, men and women do not always know what is best for them. And that is where we are called to trust God. And it is always worth it to trust God.

        As I said in the blog, abortion is the hatred of and killing of a child. No woman or man will ever find peace through that. My hope and prayer for Spain’s mom and for your Aline is that you find peace with God.

        Reply
      • Bonek

        These stories are not unamlifiar to me, since I am the blessed mommy of a former orphan from China. The stories only get worse, and while the Chinese people are beautiful (most), their government is evil. I hugged my precious daughter even more today. My prayer is that she grows up knowing this truth, but also convinced of her immeasurable value. God bless these men and women, and bestow grace and peace to their hearts. God bless the beautiful woman who abandoned her baby so that she would be found and become my baby. I KNOW IN MY HEART her birth mother LOVED HER too.

        Reply
  7. Ken

    I appreciate y’all allowing my comments here as I am about as deep a decenter as could be from your point of view. I wll do my best to keep it as inoffensive as possible. If I fail in that, I apologize but please know any abrasion on your religion or point of view is unintended.

    I feel at a bit of a dead end already as I do not share your belief that faith based reasoning has a place in laws that would govern society as a whole. I submit as common ground on this idea:

    Whose faith do we base these laws?

    The majority? I read a study that said at the current rate of conversion, most Americans, by the year 2015, will be Muslim. Should we all then have to stop whatever we are doing at 8 am, kneel toward Mecca and pray prayers we do not believe?

    I love your fevor. I bask in the warmth of your passion, especially you Stephanie! But you did not come to this ecstacy of faith in a moment commanded by some majority rule. You came to it because the rule of law allowed for freedom of religion, of expression and exploration.

    Ought we not perpetuate that atmosphere so that future generations can ebjoy the same freedom to descover their own fervor?

    Reply
    • Dave

      @Ken – I think you are asking the wrong question. It is not, “Whose faith do we base these laws?” Instead the question is: “What is truth?” The Bible is either right, or it is wrong. If it is wrong, certainly it should be ignored. However, if the Bible is what it says it is (the Word of God) it cannot be ignored. And Ken, the Bible is true.

      Reply
  8. Ken

    Dave – I have no doubt that you believe the Bible to be the Truth. I, however, do not share your conviction. But I would no more deny you your right to practice your beliefs and live your life in light of that faith than I would deny a hungry man food.

    I just am not able to get my head around why you think, what gives you the power, by what ordaining, do you get to force other peole to live by your faith?

    Your passion and devotion are compelling. But there are other paths people must walk to find their way to Glory.

    There is no one right way. If God created us in His image and likeness, aren’t we very complex and diverse creatures? Aren’t we, by the source of our origin, meant to explore very different paths? Can you honestly say, from the heart of your conviction that you, as David, the man, can REALLY know God’s intention for any other being on this planet? Ought we not let God speak to them as He sees fit?

    Preach your Gospel. Revel in your faith. And then let God do God’s work.

    Reply
    • Dave

      I think the area where we are missing each other is that my faith commands me to speak out. Being silent would actually be sin. So, if you are encouraging me to “preach my gospel” (one command from Scripture – Matt 28), why would you not commend me to “rescue those who are being taken away to death” (Prov 24:11). What you believe is that “there is no one right way” and “there are other paths.” The Bible teaches “I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father EXCEPT THROUGH ME” (Jesus – John 14:6). Why are you trying to force me to agree with what you believe instead of standing up for what I believe? Seems contradictory to the rest of your comment.

      God speaks through people and has commanded me to preach, speak for those who cannot speak for themselves, rescue those being taken away to the slaughter, and proclaim that the ONLY way to salvation is Jesus Christ. I will continue to do so not because I long to force my opinion on others, but because I have been commanded to by the only God and he has shaped my heart such that I love to do what he commands.

      Reply
      • Angel

        it’s a free country and you can do as you will and say as you plesae. I think it’s a bit unfair to take something that many people do according their religion and making it ‘illegal’ I know it’s all hypothetical but for some reason it irked me. I SOOOO don’t want to cause drama though… just saying what I feel =)

        Reply
    • Mohd

      If a human person does not have isriinntc worth in the womb, it never has. The problem as I see it is that the Western democracies can hardly tell China how to act, when they have themselves undermined human nature, by calling unborn human beings blobs of tissue . I mean, come on, get real people. Lets end all abortion. Its not good the children, nor for women in the Western world either, although there is an illusion of choice here. Read the studies on psychological trauma which follows. Lets not be hypocrites.

      Reply
  9. Ken

    I agree Dave. I am at a complete lose to understand how your faith compels you to do what you do.

    And I want to clarify that I am not trying to convert you to my way of thinking. I am trying, with obviously little success, to convey why it is I find your sidewalk counseling so perverse and invasive.

    But I think we are beating our heads against opposite sides of a brick wall. We simply are never going to find common ground here.

    And so, while I may check in and read this blog from time to time, mostly to keep tabs on you as opposition in a this cultural struggle, I think I ought to remove myself from this conversation. This is your space. Your blog to process and opine. Anymore post from me would be a distraction. I’ll leave y’all too it.

    Take Care

    Reply
    • Greiccy

      Getting health innsrauce when you are pregnant is important especially if you cant afford it. just go to the innsrauce office and ask them what to do fill out the paper work give all the information they require and its most likely they will aprove you to have health innsrauce for all through out your pregnancy.

      Reply
  10. Rashida Can

    I wish more people would write blogs like this that are really fun to read. With all the fluff floating around on the net, it is rare to read a blog like this instead.

    Reply
    • Dave

      Hey Leia, I am thankful that you read my post so carefully. I will note that my convictions have led me to a deep love for a rape victim and her (now my) son. Your convictions seem to drive you to hatred and name calling. I pray that the Lord would open your eyes to the death and hatred that result from rejecting Him.

      Reply

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