From the beginning, Ruthie’s case was unusual. It began one sunny morning when she and her family entered the Pregnancy Care Center where I volunteered. Most of our PCC clients are unmarried, so it was a rare privilege to meet Ruthie’s husband and adorable twin daughters before heading down the hall to the counseling room. Behind closed doors, a dramatically different story began to emerge.

A poster mom for abortion rights

Ruthie confessed that she had lied to her husband about their visit that day. Instead of needing diapers for her twins, she needed an abortion—fast. While recording her history, I felt as if I was watching Dr. Jekyll transforming into Mr. Hyde. She told me that three years earlier she had experienced marital problems that caused her to separate from her husband, Ron, for about a year. She and Ron already had five young children. But during that separation, she got pregnant again—by an old friend, Sam. Her pregnancy became life-threatening not only because she was having twins, but also because she developed severe gestational diabetes. At that low point, she and her husband reconciled, and although she delivered her twins early, they were healthy. Ron had committed to raising the girls, who were sitting sweetly outside our door, as his own, and also had a vasectomy to protect Ruthie from another life-threatening pregnancy. But before I could comment on what a great guy Ron was, she continued with her woes.

She had recently visited Sam with the twins, and “somehow” they ended up having sex. (Unfortunately, PCC clients often act as if getting pregnant is similar to catching a cold; they can’t figure out how it happened.) Sam was engaged to another woman at the time and wanted no complications interfering with his life. He insisted that Ruthie immediately get an abortion, and he would graciously foot the bill.

As I mentally reviewed Ruthie’s case, I realized that the poster mom for abortion rights was sitting across from me in my counseling room, waiting for me to speak.

  • Her life could be in danger with another pregnancy.
  • The baby’s father had threatened her against carrying the child.
  • She had cheated on her husband and would be found out.
  • Her husband would know immediately that the baby was not his child and would leave her.
  • She already had seven children, and she would have no income if her husband left her.
  • No one wanted this child.

“A blob of tissue”

Suddenly all my arguments against abortion seemed trite and weak. All except one, which I silently begged God to help me communicate to Ruthie. I explained that even though sex might be considered accidental, no child is ever an accident. God alone determines when life will begin, and therefore every baby is a wonderful gift from Him. This child did not deserve to die because his or her mother made a foolish choice.

Ruthie looked at me with astonishment and said, “But that’s why I need an abortion immediately. Sam said that it’s just a blob of tissue.” Upset that prenatal misinformation was threatening to take another child’s life, I excused myself to get some pictures and a video. My coworkers noticed my ashen face, so I filled them in on a few details, and they began to pray for God to intervene in this worst-case scenario.

I reentered with some pictures from Life magazine of unborn children and a graphic video about abortion. Because of time constraints, Ruthie watched only a few minutes of the video, but it was enough to see a gruesome picture: In a doctor’s hand lay a tiny aborted hand next to a quarter. Then the doctor showed other dismembered baby parts, reassembled after an abortion. Ruthie saw for herself that these “blobs of tissue” look a lot like a baby’s hands and feet. Beginning to cry, she said Sam needed to watch this video.

As Ruthie left with her diapers and smiling family, I doubted I would ever see her again. But the PCC staff was elated when she made an appointment the following week for Sam to see the video. My coworker Charlene met with them the next Monday and showed them the video about abortion. Sam, resolute in his decision about abortion, left early. But Ruthie stayed to talk. Charlene shared with her many Biblical truths and discussed other options to her difficult situation. She tried to show Ruthie that even impossible situations are not impossible with God.

One month passed, and our PCC staff felt hopeful. Then Ruthie called with devastating news: She was pregnant with twins. My heart sank. Another pregnancy was dangerous, but having twins increased her risk even more.

Abortion aborted

For months after that call, we didn’t hear much from Ruthie. Because of her situation, I could not call her; we had to wait until she contacted us. But God heard from us about her constantly. As the months passed, I was almost certain that Ruthie had succumbed to the pressure to abort. Then one day she called—to tell me the story of why she was still pregnant.

After finding out that she was having twins, Ruthie reluctantly agreed to have an abortion. Sam took her to the clinic, paid the bill, and left. As she sat in the room, she saw a quarter on the table. Suddenly she had a vivid memory of a doctor holding a quarter next to a bloody, aborted baby’s hand. Ruthie knew then that she could not abort her unborn children, so she called her brother for a ride and left the clinic.

An amazing God

What an amazing answer to prayer! Several hurdles still remained for this woman. Neither her husband nor Sam knew she was pregnant, so she had to seek separate medical insurance. In the following months she decided to allow a family member, who lived in another state and struggled with infertility, to adopt her twins. She was able to conceal her pregnancy until she left to “visit” the relatives for an extended stay. After giving birth with no complications, she returned home and contacted me one last time.

The change in Ruthie was so evident. She sparkled when she told me about the couple’s joy upon receiving not just one, but two precious children into their home. One boy and one girl made their lonely home complete. She talked with her husband when she returned, and he admitted he had known something was going on but did not want to face it. They began working on their marriage. The biggest surprise was Sam’s response. She had to contact him to sign the adoption papers. Instead of the anger she anticipated, he actually thanked her for not having the abortion and was proud that he had two more children. He even sent money to the adoptive couple to help out with expenses.

Wow! When I heard this last report, I realized that God had taught me so many lessons through this situation. Nothing is impossible with God! Prayer works! But it also impressed upon me that God’s solution was so much greater than anything I could imagine. He changed the hardest heart. He healed physical problems. He blessed an unsuspecting couple and was healing a hurting couple. From the case that could have been used to support abortion on demand came the most dramatic pro-life case I have ever witnessed. I know now that any list of reasons to have an abortion is merely an opportunity for God to show His great power to change hearts, lives, and circumstances to bring honor to His name.