When the woman called to make an appointment for the Community Pregnancy Center, I thought nothing of it. She said it was for her granddaughter, so I knew the client was probably under 25. When she said that the girl didn’t have a driver’s license, I knew that the client was probably under 16. I assured the grandmother that we certainly accept school identification, as well. I made the appointment for the following day.
The grandmother and grandfather followed behind the young girl last Thursday morning. Our receptionist greeted them warmly and received the school ID from the girl’s hands: a junior high’s school ID.
12 years old
The client advocate took a deep breath and called the preteen into the first counseling room. The girl offered little to the conversation. She merely answered the questions asked of her. She was indeed 12 years old. The father of her baby was 16 years old-a sophomore in high school. They had only been dating for 3 months. For the small window of time, the couple was actively trying to get pregnant. They talked about it, and they both agreed. They wanted a baby, if for no other reason but that it might be fun to have one. When asked about the boyfriend, the client admitted that she didn’t want a future with him. He was just her “right now”.
Her parents both lived out of the country. Apparently she’s been without them for many years, because she calls her grandparents “mom” and “dad”. Her own mother gave birth to her when she herself was just 14 years old. Though she was trying to have a baby, the young client went straight to her grandmother when she suspected a pregnancy, asking, “So what do I do now? Do I have an abortion?”
She planned this pregnancy, yet she had no concept of actually carrying a baby for 9 months and then raising it for the next 18 years. She wanted to have a baby at 12 years old, but she wasn’t sure if she should have an abortion instead. She wanted to have sex and share that responsibility with someone, but she certainly didn’t want it long-term. When the client advocate asked about a relationship with God, the client said she was a Christian, but then also said that she didn’t think she would go to Heaven. She was a child by all definitions of the word.
The test read positive.
She’s 7 weeks pregnant.
The client, slowly starting to grasp the reality she created, chose LIFE. She is scheduled and confirmed for an ultrasound: a child looking at her own child.
“Then Jesus called for the children and said to the disciples, ‘Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children.’”
Jesus calls for the children. He calls for this confused 12 year old. He knows her by name. He holds her close to Himself. He will use a childish decision to pull this child’s heart to His own. Even a twelve year old’s pregnancy is forgiveable and redeemable, because God’s grace forever stretches beyond the choices of man.