Let me tell you a story… (All names have been changed)
There was this beautiful Australian Christian family…
The dad was a builder. The mum was blessed to stay at home with the kids, and as a whole family they were active in local outreach mission. Each Friday night they would help serve with their church, a local free community meal. The dad served as a church elder, and the mum was on parish council. Their eldest daughter helped to run the youth group and never missed a meeting. She did not skip school or stay out late with her girlfriends and was almost engaged to another church family’s son. She was responsible with her mobile phone and at school was on the committee formed to take an active stance against bullying…and she even stayed home to baby sit the two younger siblings with no complaint, when the mum and dad needed a date night!
A picture perfect family…That was, until one day at their evening family meal, the eldest daughter made an announcement…
“Mum and dad….ummmm…I really need to tell you something…PLEASE just listen to me though…and DON’T FREAK OUT!” Instantly as you could appreciate, an uneasy tension was in the air.
“What do you mean, freak out?” The Mum replied with a nervous laugh…Silence.
“Well spit it out love, what did you do…finally over spend your phone allowance?” said the dad with a relaxed laugh, breaking the tension.
“No” came a small reply. Then the parents really knew something was wrong. However the mother pulled herself together and went into good parenting mode. “Okay sweetie, what’s up…you know you can tell us anything! Is it Michael, or is something wrong at school?”
“No….I’m….I’m…pregnant…” The blood drained from the mother’s face, as if it was filling the dad’s, as he began turning bright red in rage!
“That Michael, I’m gonna kill him!” He yelled as he pushed his chair away from the table to grab his mobile phone. “No dad! Wait…” cried the daughter… “It’s not his fault!”
“What do you mean?” The dad yelled back. “Did you plan this?”
At that stage the mother broke down and began sobbing at the table. Overwhelmed at the thought of their family’s shame that would become public knowledge…
Fast forward a few weeks and the daughter’s stomach was starting to become noticeable…she now needed to wear loose tee-shirts rather than her fitted ones. The family tension was beginning to get unbearable. The dad had spoken to the boyfriend who was just hopeless…he seemed to not really know anything about the pregnancy, and this infuriated the girl’s parents even more as they really thought Michael was not THAT type of boy! The family kept making excuses to not attend church, as they just couldn’t bare to face anyone. The daughter was also very difficult to talk to, because all she kept repeating was how she believed that this baby was meant to be, and was a part of God’s plan.
The daughter just didn’t seem to realise how a baby would ruin her life and her family’s good reputation. She did not fathom how university (Bible College) would no longer be an option for her with a baby out of wedlock, and why she couldn’t live at home with her parents and study theology, or have a shot-gun wedding to Michael before anyone else in the town found out!
The mother had finally gotten her head around the idea that a baby was sure to arrive and knew that something had to be done. So the mother and daughter went to see their local doctor for a check-up. He was actually a member of their church congregation, and after finding out about the dilemma and checking the daughter, he sat down to offer his wise counsel.
The doctor explained that even though the daughter was beginning to show, abortions could be performed quite late these days, and in fact were just a day procedure. A city clinic would offer absolute discretion. The mother and daughter thanked their friend and went home.
Later that evening the mother discussed the doctor’s advice with the dad, and together they looked at some possible dates on the calendar…calm was being restored. They called their daughter into the kitchen, but when she did not come they went into her room and found a note.
Dear Mum and Dad,
I know you both love me and please know that I also love you both very much.
This baby really is God’s plan for me, but I get that you are unable to understand this.
I have left to go stay with someone I trust, and who is not going to force me to get rid of my baby.
I will return when you can no longer take me to the clinic.
I am sorry that you feel ashamed by me as I am still your daughter who loves the Lord.
What do you think of this story?
What would you do in this situation if your were the girl’s parent?
What about if you were a close friend of the family, or the family’s doctor, what advice would you give?
This story is actually fiction, but I believe it is a real possible scenario…
Now I would like you to do something…
Change the names Michael and Laura, to Joseph and Mary, and change the setting from a modern day western one, to that of Israel around 2,000 years ago.
Now re-read the story with this question in mind; “What if Jesus was born today?”
In His service, Melanie J