Abortion and High-Risk Pregnancies

A lot of people have written about the recent Supreme Court decision on abortion clinics in the state of Texas. Like many, I am grieved by this news and what it means for women and children in America. Along with this sadness over abortion, I'm concerned with the way we love and serve women in difficult or unplanned pregnancies.

Not all women who chose to end their pregnancy do so because they didn't intend to get pregnant. Some women are in a high-risk or complicated pregnancy, and they feel there are no options for them but to terminate the pregnancy.

If you are wondering how you are going to endure a difficult pregnancy, and even life with a child who may have tremendous needs, I hope this post encourages you.

A Word to the Scared Pregnant Mommas

To mommas in high-risk pregnancies, I know you are scared. I know you wake every morning with a lot of uncertainty and a lot of voices telling you what to do. I've been there.

I've been pregnant four times and only made it to the delivery room twice. I've been in ultrasound rooms and heard the words, "I'm sorry, there is no heartbeat," and I've been in an operating room staring at the faces of my premature babies praying they would just take a breath. I've held my tiny baby's hand while he was attached to way too many wires, and I've grieved over babies I've never held. Pregnancy is fear-inducing for me. It's also incredibly disappointing.

There are a lot of emotions that can rise within us when we are faced with a pregnancy that is risky or unique. You may feel bitterness that you're the one walking this road instead of the pregnant woman sitting next to you at the doctor's office. You may be tempted to doubt God's goodness. You may be driven to despair when you read the information provided to you about your baby and his or her needs. You may resent the fact that you are pregnant at all—it's simply not what you expected it to be.

Fear is probably the emotion that rules them all.

But you are brave, sister. Braver than you know. With every day you carry that baby, you are telling a lost world that life matters. You are a walking testimony to the value of life. Your willingness to give yourself physically for your baby, a baby who needs you desperately, is beautiful in God's eyes.

He sees. He knows you and loves your baby. Your life is not forgotten to Him. Your baby's life is not forgotten to Him. The baby you carry was formed by the God who is sustaining all things by His very word (Col. 1:17; Heb. 1:3). You can trust Him.

In your exhausted fear you can rest in His goodness, in His care for you, and in His sovereign plan for your life. I say this as a woman who has been on the receiving end of hard news on more than one occasion: "He will not leave you or forsake you" (Deut. 31:6).

The lie of the abortion movement is that this baby you carry is not worth saving, that his life is not worth living, or he is not worth giving your life for. God's Word tells us that every life is precious to Him—both your baby's and yours.

And now, for those who want to love these high-risk mommas well, let's give them a better weapon than the one wielded by the abortion movement.

Fight the Mommy Wars with a Better Weapon

The mommy wars are alive and well in the pregnancy world, as you are probably aware. The battle begins before that first wave of morning sickness. But what works in a normal pregnancy might not work in a high-risk pregnancy.

If this woman is on bed rest, she won't be able to decorate the nursery. If her baby is born early, she may not have time to stock up on diapers or wash all of the baby clothes in Dreft. If she is sick and unable to nurse, she may feel the sting of the constant refrain that "breast is best." If her baby has special needs, developmental therapy sessions will likely replace playdates.

While the mommy wars rage around us, we have a better weapon for the high-risk mommas in in our lives. Instead of heaping the world's advice on her weary soul, heap Christ on her soul instead.

Give her the healing balm of Christ's care for her life and her baby's life. Take her to the Savior who knows what it means to suffer a seemingly senseless death, who understands loss and pain personally, and can sympathize with us in our weakness (Heb. 4:15).

The Christ who defeats our enemies also puts the mommy wars to bed with His perfect and finished work (1 Cor. 15:25). Help her with her practical needs, absolutely. We all know there will be many needs to meet for a high-risk momma, but in the process point her to the Savior who is not surprised by her difficult pregnancy and promises to meet her every need each step along the way.

Walking with a woman through a high-risk pregnancy can be all consuming. It won't always look like the Pinterest-inspired pregnancies and baby stuff we consume on a regular basis. For some, it will be emotional and exhausting. For others it will be sorrowful and bleak. But it will always be worth it.

The world tells us that babies who are frail, sick, or don't stand a chance aren't worth celebrating, aren't worth saving, and aren't worth acknowledging. But we know a better answer.

Loving a woman in a high-risk pregnancy tells a confused world that life matters, that every baby is a treasure, and that even the sickest and neediest among us deserve our care. The world is not worthy of them or their mommas (Heb. 11:38).

As we grieve over the recent Supreme Court decision, how can you love the women in your life who may be walking through a scary or difficult pregnancy?

This post is adapted from the book​ Women on Life: A Call to Love the Unborn, Unloved, and Neglected.

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About the Author

Courtney Reissig

Courtney Reissig

Courtney is a pastor’s wife, mother, freelance writer, and blogger. She was born in California, grew up in Texas, and did a couple of stints in Michigan before finally graduating from Northwestern College (MN) with a degree in English. After doing some graduate study at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, she met her husband, fell in love, and now lives in Little Rock, AR with their twin boys. They moved to Arkansas to help plant Midtown Baptist Church, where her husband serves as one of the pastors.