How My Stand For Life Began
A Personal Story from Stand For Life’s Elizabeth Graham
I’ve considered myself “pro-life” for as long as I can remember. But the fight for human life became real when one of my closest friends in high school confided in me.
At 16, she was pregnant.
As I processed this news, I confided in my mom who had spent years raising me and my siblings to believe that every life held value. I thought I understood that and believed that, but it was not until my mom took me to a local pregnancy center to help me navigate the shock and weightiness of my friend’s situation that my eyes were opened.
At the pregnancy center, I was handed a pamphlet that clearly stated the reason why we choose life for pre-born babies: they were made in the glorious image of God.
At 16, barely old enough to operate a vehicle, my dear friend chose life for her child. The trajectory of her own story was irreversibly altered, but her trust in the Lord continues to have a profound impact on me. I learned that it was easy to call yourself “pro-life,” but when it came time to uphold the dignity of every human being, it required a strength and courage that only the Lord could provide.
A few years down the line, a close family member—in college on a sports scholarship at the time—discovered she was pregnant. Her doctor urged her to consider all she would lose if she chose to keep the baby, advising that abortion was her best option.
But she knew that taking the life of her child was not an option, despite understanding all she might lose according to the world’s standards. She chose to focus on all she would gain if she remained reverent to God’s design, walking with Him instead of towards personal comfort. She changed her plans, forfeiting the future she had been pursuing, to stand for life.
Years later, I watched her advocate for life again as that same doctor encouraged her to abort another child due to a genetic issue.
A Stand For Life Found in Stories
I was on the sidelines as these women navigated the shame of an unexpected pregnancy and made the necessary decisions to choose to keep the life God was knitting together in their wombs. Everything I read in Scripture about humans being created in the image of God came alive through their testimonies of faith. They understood what God’s Word required of them, which was to choose life no matter the cost.
I realized, what if every woman—every family—facing similar circumstances held the same conviction that human life is sacred, holding immeasurable worth and inherent dignity? What if they were surrounded by the resources, support, and relationships needed to bring that pre-born life, bearing the image of God, into our world?
Could abortion become unthinkable in our society if we collectively understood the inherent value of every human life, from conception to natural death?
These questions have led me to where I am today.
God has graciously continued to expand this pro-life vision through a myriad of life experiences. I’ve had the privilege of participating in justice advocacy work, walking alongside another family member as they grieved a miscarriage, celebrating with my friends as they adopted a child, and acting as my grandfather’s co-medical power of attorney during his final month of life.
This growing love for God’s image in every human being has led me into ministry to those who are incarcerated, sharing the Gospel with those who have lost hope for redemption. And to our nation’s border, visiting women and families who have risked it all to provide a better life for their children.
These raw, complicated human stories have shaped and strengthened my understanding of what it means to stand for life. They have taught me that no matter the challenges we face, God has laid out in Scripture how we are to treat and care for image bearers who are vulnerable.
Playing Your Role in the Holistic Pro-Life Story
In His wisdom, God has placed you in your family, community, and area of influence for a purpose…
To hold the hand of an image bearer as she shares the news of her unexpected pregnancy.
To see and bear the burden of suffering in front of the image bearer who faces homelessness and addiction.
To advocate for image bearers whose lives only seem to matter on one side of the political aisle.
To care for the image bearer who has entered their final stage of life.
To prayerfully consider fostering and adopting image bearers who are growing up without safe and loving forever families.
I invite you to reflect on your story. What experiences have convinced you of God’s good design for human life? Who is in front of you right now who longs to be seen, known, and loved?
May our stories be marked by a courageous, consistent, and ever-growing stand for life.