05.22.17

Men Really Do Matter!

Do men really matter when it comes to pregnancies? Should men actually care about the nine-month waiting period for that beautiful baby girl or boy to adorn the world with their presence? Given the fact that men are obviously involved in the conception of the baby, where do they fit in the decision of pregnancy?

Working in a pregnancy center for almost 3 years, I saw and experienced defining moments of fatherhood in meeting with men dealing with the sensitive decision of abortion. A biblical discussion of fatherhood, related to the decision of abortion, appears to be slipping between the spiritual cracks of our churches and even in our discipleship methods. The pregnancy center is a place that brings awareness, shows grace, and prays for the hope of unborn children and their parents to experience God’s love for them. We must be made aware of the distinct role that fathers have in leading through the process of thinking through abortion, and what that means for the immediate and long-term future of that mother and child. Far too often in our television shows, especially those with a family theme, we see the man is a bumbling, forgetful idiot who has to listen to his wife to get things right. Now, don’t get me wrong. I have 10 years of marriage that screams, “Listen to your wife!” and I encourage listening early and often. But we fathers have a role that God commands of us, a role our wives and children need us to embrace.

Men should not be silent about the subject of abortion. National pregnancy statistics show us that over 80% of women that hear a simple statement from the father such as “Baby, we can do this”, 80% of the time choose life for that baby. At the specific center where I worked, from August 2014 until August 2015, we saw dramatic statistics.

  • For pregnancy test clients who had involvement in the decision from the father: 19% were assessed Abortion Minded
  • For clients who stated father involvement was uncertain: 50% were assessed as Abortion Minded
  • For clients who stated father involvement was non-existent: 59% were assessed as Abortion Minded

These numbers are very significant and warrant imminent involvement of men in the issue of abortion. Men have the opportunity to speak into the act of abortion from a standpoint that opens the door to God’s grace, his love for His creation, His disdain for sin, and His ultimate plan of redemption through Jesus Christ. I would love for every local church to find the pregnancy center nearest to them, experience the realness of that ministry, and figure out how to play a part in supporting that ministry. Men can lead out on this in so many ways, and those ways start with being available. I often say in speaking about men in the pregnancy center that it takes a man to teach a man how to be a man. Question is: Men, are we willing to do it? Can the pregnancy center look for the support of men in and out of the center? I watched men sit in their cars and snapchat and text on their phones while their spouse or girlfriend would be inside the abortion clinic, sitting on a cold table, contemplating a decision that is literally life or death. Are we to sit idly by and watch this happen? Fathers are spiritual leaders of our homes, guardians and pillars in our communities, and we have a responsibility to be active, and in place to be used by God to speak into the ills of our world.

Photo: Petras Gagilas / flickr

Gary J. Freeman
Gary Freeman was the Fatherhood Outreach Coordinator for Gateway Pregnancy and Sexual Health Resource Center. Gary recently served as an Associate Campus Pastor for the Summit Church at the North Raleigh Campus in Raleigh, NC.

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