Full disclosure. That describes both the movie Unplanned and the fact that I need to admit up front that I have not seen this movie. So, one may rightly ask, why would I write about a movie I have not seen?
While movies come and go, the effect they have on people can last for a long time. Based on the reactions I have been receiving from people in our congregation, it seems that this film will have a long lasting impact on all who see it. Abortion isn’t pretty, and this movie reminds people of the multifaceted nature of this truth. The act of killing babies is not pretty. The emotional torment suffered by mothers is not pretty. The lasting trauma that so many endure, often in silence, after they’ve been party to an abortion is not pretty. The result is that parts of this film are, apparently, not pretty, but they shouldn’t be.
So far, I have discovered two rather significant things related to this movie that have caught my attention. The first comes from a conversation I had with a friend who saw the movie. This person was shocked by what they came to understand the mission of planned parenthood to be. After hearing about Planned Parenthood for so long in a secular context, they assumed that it was an organization that sought to help pregnant women and their partners, not kill babies in the womb. For some of you, such a realization may seem strange since you are well versed in the people, organizations and powers that are at work in this arena. But remember that not everyone comes from the same background or lives among the same network of friends as you do. Christians need to be compassionate toward others, and this includes how we react. Responses to people for whom this movie will open their eyes need not include, “How could you not know?”, “Where have you been living?”, “Nice to see you’ve come up for air.” Our condescension has never helped our witness.
Second, after a very brief troll through the internet, I’ve discovered, not surprisingly, that some famous people have spoken strongly against this movie. They mock it, deride it and, worst of all, minimize it by maximizing evil. Claims have been made that the real evil is legislation that disallows abortions once a heartbeat can be detected. Reading such comments reminded me of a line in a song, “save the trees, but kill the children”. The point is that without Christ, without truth, the world will consistently put the emphasis in the wrong place and, in this case, with devastating effect.
Have you had an abortion and are still struggling with the consequences? Are you considering an abortion? Do you know someone in either of these situations? If so, contact me at the church (and if on behalf of a friend, with their permission) and I will make sure they find the compassionate, gospel centered, Jesus honoring help they need.
*P.S. Some time ago, Nathan wrote an essay on abortion that many in his Sunday school class found helpful. If you’re interested in reading it, click here.