“Abortion ruined my life.” -Gregg Cunningham, Esq.
Greg Cunningham is a man responsible for the creation of dozens of pro-life organizations. Without his work, thousands upon thousands of babies would be dead today. In an era of endless litigation, Gregg has everything going for him: a high-powered legal mind, organizational prowess, and a strategic vision for abolishing abortion. But abortion didn’t ruin his life in the way that you would think – e.g. a child who is aborted or a mother who is living out lifelong emotional trauma – abortion ruined the conception he had of his own life. It crushed his life plan and goals. We often hear in our culture that you should do whatever makes you happy or you can be whatever you want. While I understand the spirit behind this mentality, there seems to be a fundamental problem with it; personal callings and the good of our neighbors don’t always coincide.
The conception I have had for my own life has changed throughout the years. I certainly didn’t see myself doing this work full-time growing up. In fact, when I first started this work, I was dead set on a career in the navy. I wanted to be a green side corpsman providing medical aid to the marines.
This was before abortion ruined my life.
The depths to which the hateful act of abortion had penetrated my heart were only knee deep. Still, walking knee deep in a swamp is exhausting, and the path ahead only became murkier and deeper. In the summer of 2014, I slipped headlong into that swamp. This wasn’t because I was a righteous person where others were not; in fact, it was just the opposite. I know of no one else whose sin is uglier and more repulsive than mine.The degree of a person’s culpability is directly tied to what they know, and what I know is that a baby will die every 30 seconds in America. I know when they will die, and I know where they will die. I know they will die without anyone to comfort them. I know they will die without the love of their mother and her arms that squeeze them tight against the hatred of this world. I know they won’t have the blessed existence I have been privileged to inherit – God provides my every breath! Every second that I haven’t had a brain aneurysm and been ripped from this world, I don’t deserve!
My saint of a mother who tolerates my stupidity, I never deserved. My sage of a father whose intelligence I aspire to, I never deserved. My siblings whose talent floors me, I never deserved. The siblings I never met who died in miscarriage, whose smiles I will only come to learn at the foot of our Father, I never deserved. Yet there are children today – even one second ago – who will never have these blessings, only a plastic bag bearing their age as the only marker of the fact that THEY EXIST!
Fredrick Douglass, a man raised in slavery and famous abolitionist during one of America’s darkest hours, described his first meeting he had with his mother who walked twelve miles in the dead of night to see her boy: “That night, I learned the fact, that I was not only a child, but somebody’s child… I was victorious, and well off for the moment; prouder, on my mother’s knee, than a king upon his throne.”
Woe to us, America, whose slave women of the past – having no possessions to their name – love their children more fully than we who possess our own lives. Frederick Douglass didn’t have possession of his own labor, much more his own life, but the love of his enslaved mother was enough to comfort a boy in a seemingly inconsolable existence. Today’s poor are yesterday’s royalty, having a crisis of obesity over that of hunger; and yet, the cries of our children are regarded as rubbish, open mouths to feed from our excess. They must be chopped and diced up, lest they scavenge a crumb from our table and rob us of our perfect, idealistic dreams. While some engage in slaughter, others point and laugh, nod in approval, or shrug, passing by as if they hadn’t seen anything. Our guilt is not on one, but on many – or all – of us who have allowed these children to die in silence.
There’s a reason people scream in pain when injustice is inflicted on them – the noise is intolerable, and we would rather not listen to it. Luckily, our expensive headphones and custom fitted subwoofers will easily drown that out. I once heard of an abortionist who would blast We’re Not Going To Take It by Twisted Sister out of his facility doors. How fitting that a man who kills the innocent also works diligently to muffle their cries, shrugging off the responsibility of parents to their children. In this context, “we’re not going to take it,” sounds awfully like a parent saying, “have a nice life, kid,” while slamming the minivan door and leaving their defenseless three-year-old on the side of a highway. Except in the case of abortion, we’re killing children, not just abandoning them. You don’t want kids? Abandon them. Kill them. Get rid of them. Whatever you do, don’t take them. What bravery. The volume rises a few decimals.
“Lord, where are you going, that we may follow?” Christ, carrying the tool of His demise, responds, “pick up your cross and follow me.” The sad but glorious reality of Christianity is that Christ does not ask us to live quiet lives. Sad, because many conservative Christians want nothing more than to be left alone, but glorious, in that we have the tremendous privilege of pouring out our lives in thankfulness to our Lord. Christ doesn’t ask us to pick up our guitars and fill our evenings with fireside Kumbaya’s. He tells us to pick up the instruments of our destruction, and carry them to the men who will pin us to them. Shoulder the children until they break your back, and preach the gospel until your enemies cut out your tongue. Then, when your mouth fills with blood, hum the Lords hymns until we see Him in His glory.
Most Christians like the sound of carrying the cross. It makes them sound heroic and brave. But the reality is, none of us are heroes. We’re accomplices to the killing. We’re the Judas’s of the story. We spit and sneer and laugh at our Lord on the cross with every sin we commit and every righteous act we omit. But God, being rich in mercy, with the great love with which He loved us, set us free. By grace we are saved through faith. Every righteous act we commit in service to the Lord is an act of repentance before Him; and it is repentance and thankfulness that leads us to save His children, not our own heroism.
In saying all that I have, I don’t intend to convey that I don’t love where I am and what I’m doing. In fact, quite the opposite, God has taught my heart to love what I do. It is not without grace upon grace, but He has done it, nonetheless. This Christmas, remember the birth of our Lord who came to die for our sins. Remember it always. The sacrifice on Calvary was in payment for sin. Abortion, being sin, will not go away without sacrifice. The abortion industry has literally put a price on the heads of each child they kill. They hold up those tags as a challenge to all Christians, saying, “How much of yourself will you give for this bastard child?” Let our response be, “Our lives. Only our lives.”
– Sam Riley, Content Manager and Field Captain