I was 13 weeks pregnant when I first saw it: a look that had never come across the face of my sweet husband before. A little glimmer in his eye, a slight smile appearing, and then laughter.
We had two ultrasounds before this one—one at 5 weeks and another at 8 weeks. This would make number 3. Something inside of me told me I was pregnant right away—I just knew it. And after we received confirmation on my birthday, we got to see our little mustard seed at 5 weeks and our little jellybean at 8 weeks.
At 8 weeks, we were in Thailand and we heard the gentle sound of a rapid heartbeat for the first time—at 8 weeks old! Less than 2 months after conception, this little one inside of me had a heartbeat. Life was developing and blood was flowing through this tiny little human.
Then, something happens between 8 and 13 weeks. That little jellybean grows…a lot. And the next ultrasound we saw looked nothing like a jellybean; but like a little baby. Head formed, legs and arms moving, spine and organs beginning to set in place.
At first I couldn’t see the ultrasound screen. I could only see the ultrasound tech and Jeremy looking at it. And that’s where it happened: I saw the face of my husband when his “daddy face” appeared.
There is a look he only gives me; and there is a different look he only gives to our children. Loving, kind, proud, protector, father.
He could see that little life wiggling around inside of me trying to avoid the camera. [Did you know the ultrasound shows live movement not just still photos? Something that surprised me the first time I saw a moving baby!] Jeremy could see this child that would need his love and guidance. He could see our baby’s heart beating, her body moving, and even a few moments when she sucked her thumb.
And he smiled. It was very good.
Even in Nepal, we read about the Planned Parenthood initiatives and scandals to a point that this new momma had to stop reading. I kept thinking: if only more people could see these ultrasounds at an earlier time. There is no way to deny the reality of the existence of this baby. It’s right there in front of you.
The gospel of Christ is about life being created, life being sustained against all odds, and a heart of denial of self for the sake of others. Pregnancy is much the same. When we view it as a consequence for actions rather than the beauty of what it was intended for, we are perverting the very essence of what we were created for—to bear life. We trade what is very good and eternal for something that is trivial and temporary.
There are many circumstances that put a woman in the position to abort her child. Yet those excuses are leading to the same road: the murder of an innocent life. And still, those circumstances remain.
What if we as the church got involved? What if we provided the means for women to have other options? What if we befriended women who we know are struggling with the decision to keep or abort their child and walked through life with her? What if we lived life with those outside the walls of our church so we could be available when desperate circumstances arise in the life of these women? What if we could be a voice of truth and love and life to others because of the investment we have in the relationship?
To walk through life with others, to experience the joys and sorrows they face, to speak life and truth out of love, to know the Word and live it out, to bear life, to help sustain it against all odds, to choose to invest in relationships even when we have a million other things going on—this is the gospel. This is discipleship.
As the look of a new father when he first sees his child, this is the look the Father gives to us. We are loved by Him and valued beyond measure—each one of us—whether born already or growing in our mother’s womb. Life is present. And where there is life, there is Love.
“For God so LOVED the world that He gave His one and only son…” He gave so we could live. He loved so we could have life. He lived so we could love.
Let’s show the world this Love through our life lived for Him. Let’s be present in other’s lives so we can share the gospel with them in their most desperate of circumstances. Let’s point the world to Christ and His example of what it means to create, sustain, and bear life.