A Note to Guys on Fatherhood
I'll never forget the wave of emotions that gripped me that night. My wife leaned back against me, my arms around her as she cried out in agony. All I could do was hold her and try to encourage her with words of reassurance. And then, in that awesome miraculous moment my son made his way into the world.
I was staggered by the flood of feelings that gripped me when I first held that boy in my arms. There was exquisite joy, a foreboding fear, uncertainty, self-doubt, resolve all pounding away in my head.
But the thought that made its way into my consciousness
from the very core of my manhood was that
I wanted to give myself to this child,
just love the stuffing out of him!
On that precious night I knew I wanted to be the best dad I could be for him.
Now the circumstances surrounding the birth of my son were not ideal, but they were pretty stable. We were pretty poor and we lived in a very old rickety house. But we were married, we loved each other deeply, I had started my own business, and most importantly I had a strong and calming faith in Jesus Christ. Because you are reading this, chances are you are also facing fatherhood. You may however, find yourself in a very different set of circumstances from mine.
There are a few things you need to understand right from the start:
First and foremost, despite the mess that you're in, God loves you with an everlasting love. You cannot do anything to diminish that.
Second, you're not going to be a father, you already are a father. You see, we are accustomed to thinking that we become fathers when the baby is born. But the truth is, you are the father of a living baby happily and peacefully growing in the womb of the girl you had sex with. Click on the How Your Baby Grows link to see photographs of a developing baby. These pictures are convincing proof that this is a tiny baby - not a blob of tissue.
Third, there are people out there who care about you. Too often the guy gets lost amidst the concern for the mother and child. It's important for you to know that we care about you as well.
All of the emotions I experienced must seem trivial compared to what you must be feeling. If you are young and in school you may be really worried about what your parents will think. You are for sure scared of what her parents are going to say. You don't know if you can handle being a dad right now, financially or emotionally. Maybe you feel some shame and regret. Maybe its over for you and your girlfriend and that's ripping you up inside. Perhaps you are not sure what rights you have legally concerning your child. These are all tough issues and we've just scratched the surface. You have life changing decisions facing you and none of them will be easy to make. So here's the deal - given your situation you can make some good choices, or you can make some really bad choices that will have tragic consequences.
My hope is that you will make the right choices for you,
your child and the child's mother.
True manhood knows nothing of foolish isolation.
There is no shame in accepting the fact that getting some
help is a good idea. There are other men who are
willing to come alongside you
and help you sort through this stuff.
You don't have to be macho and go it alone.
A real man looks honestly at his problems and squares off with them, and part of that is knowing when you need help and asking for it. There are options you may not have considered. There is help available to young parents trying to make a go of parenting. There are also many, many couples who want so badly to have children but are not able. These good people are waiting for a child to adopt.
The choice really comes down to life or death. Abortion is not a "quick fix" or an easy way out of your situation. Lurking on the back side of the abortion is emotional pain, broken relationships, guilt, regret and sometimes medical complications.
To agree to the death of your own child violates your manhood
because as men we are created to protect our own,
not destroy them.
Life is precious my friend. The terrorist attack on the World Trade Centers has reminded us of the value of human life. In God's eyes, the life of your child is just as valuable and precious as those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001. This is true because all human beings are created in God¹s image. Don't waste the life that has been given.