By Anna DeMeuse
One of my favorite quotes comes from a wise woman recognized as a Saint in the Catholic Church - Edith Stein. She says, “The world doesn’t need what women have, it needs what women are.” I am particularly reminded of these words today as we celebrate International Women’s Day and honor the many noble women throughout history. The truth is that we as women are created for a great mission, a mission that cannot be separated from our very nature. However, we live in a culture that encourages us everyday to deny our very womanhood and defy the very gift that makes us so unique.
For years, the culture of death has sold lie after lie to women and so many of us have bought into the sale. While I could outline each and every point of deception and a way to combat each one, it all really boils down to two truths and a lie.
THE LIE: “We Care About You”
It is no surprise that these are the words so many “pro-choice” advocates use. Planned Parenthood’s slogan reads “Care. No matter what.” Every advocate for “women’s rights” will argue that they “care” about women. But what does it really mean to care?
The culture of death shouts steadily that women need abortion. It sells women an idea of sexual freedom and then instills fear when an unintended pregnancy results. They convince us as women that if our pregnancy is “unwanted,” our life is over and our success is ruined. Every excuse is used in order to thicken their wallets - “you’re too young to raise a child” or “you’re not financially ready” or “if you have this baby, you’ll never accomplish all the dreams you have for your life.” I’ve heard every lie in the book but it all amounts to one simple fact: the abortion industry does not care for women. The abortion industry is incapable of care because it is incapable of love. The entire industry is one of use and exploitation. If a person truly cared for you, they would not exploit you and take advantage of you at your most vulnerable, yet this is precisely what the abortion industry does.
As women, we can either believe the lies that are told to us each and every day OR we can choose to claim our identity.
TRUTH #1: We are made for love.
To love and be loved in return is one of the greatest joys of life, yet we settle so many times for the very opposite of love. To love is to will the good of another. What is more loving than choosing virtue over sexual exploitation? What is more loving than journeying with a woman and speaking truth into her life by saying she is strong enough to choose life? The pro-life movement is one that knows very well what women are and the gift that women give to the world. As pro-life advocates we encourage women. We feed them the truth. We assure them they are strong enough. We provide them with assistance and community. We give them everything they could possibly need in order to choose life, happiness, and love. We love until it hurts because that is the only true way to love. It is never easy, but it always worth it. Today, know that you are created for love, and never settle for the lie of anything less.
TRUTH #2: We are made for greatness.
Too often in our culture today, we opt for convenience over quality. To a deadly fault, this mindset has permeated the culture and allowed for women to choose abortion because it is available and seemingly convenient. Abortion is sold as a “quick fix” for the “problem” of pregnancy, yet we know it isn’t. It is a decision that affects the rest of a woman’s life and one that can never be erased. Women, we are not made to live in sorrow and regret. We are made to live in joy and freedom. To this day I have never met a woman who chose life that regrets it, but everyday, thousands of women grieve as they regret their decision to have an abortion. Is choosing life a sacrifice? Absolutely. Is being a mother difficult? Absolutely. There is no sugar coating the reality that parenting is difficult. Raising a child is forever, but it is worth it? Absolutely. We were made for exactly this - to sacrifice mediocrity for greatness. Today, know that you are created for greatness, and never settle for the lie of anything less.
In the words of Lila Rose, founder of LiveAction, “A culture of fear tells a pregnant mom, ‘You can’t do this. You’re alone, your life is over. This is a burden you can’t bear.’ Love whispers, ‘You’re stronger than you know. This is hard, but incredible joy is coming. You’re not alone. Your life (& another’s) is just beginning.’”
On this International Women’s Day, let us all strive to be the gentle voice of love in a culture that is in such desperate need.