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Honoring the Preborn: Cerian's Story (Part 1 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
September 15, 2020 6:00 am

Honoring the Preborn: Cerian's Story (Part 1 of 2)

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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September 15, 2020 6:00 am

Sarah Williams recounts her experiences surrounding her pregnancy with her daughter Cerian who was diagnosed with a fatal medical condition that virtually guaranteed her death at the time of birth. Sarah explains the decision to carry her baby to term, the opposition she and her husband encountered, and how they experienced the presence and hope of God as never before. (Part 1 of 2)

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Focus on the Family
Jim Daly
Encouraging Word
Don Wilton
Encouraging Word
Don Wilton
Focus on the Family
Jim Daly

Hi this is Jim Daly with Focus on the Family uplifting music is such an encouragement to my faith. I can't wait to experience the powerful songs that will be part of sea life 2020 join us online as we welcome Phil Stacy Danny Koepke and a surprise musical guest or two for this transformational pro-life event sea life 2020 is on September 26 at 8 PM Eastern time. For more information, text, heartbeat, to 72,000 she was the greatest gift God because through loving God showed me and said this thing was it wasn't about doing something grand Ray moral she was God's gift because she ptosis out enough somebody needs Sarah Williams choices today on Focus on the Family your hostess focus Pres. and Dr. Jim Daly and I'm John. Focus on the Family we hear so many wonderful stories from marriages that are say to relationships with parents and their children being redeemed too often kids finding forever home. Some of my favorite stories, though center around the pre-born child in her focus for over 40 years we have been staunchly pro-life, and certainly over the last year and 1/2 with the different programs we have heard focus. We have been restating our position as a pro-life organization.

It seems that's really important in today's culture gym doors open for people to hear that message right. It's one reason we celebrated a live from New York back in May 2019 and what a great event that that was, as we mentioned before the start of the show was a 40 ultrasound of her third trimester baby and I'll never forget what I would call that holy hush over that crowd.

Remember that I do. It was it was just awesome. And while we had about 20,000 pro-life folks there in Times Square for that event. There were also about 300 protesters and when that baby came on the screen and you could hear the heartbeat. It was breathtaking and I watch the faces of the protesters. That's where my eyes went and they were riveted on the 40 image clearly showed the baby in the womb. And it was so powerful and so we've re-energize that effort with a free online event called sea life 2020 and this is happening on September 26 just a few weeks from now and it's going to transform hearts and minds on the issue of abortion. I do believe the program will feature powerful pro-life stories soul stirring music, and it will culminate with the 40 ultrasound of the baby offering a window into the reality of life in the womb, and you won't want to miss it. All the details about sea life 2020 on September 26 are in the episode notes John the story we have today really lines up with this passion for life and we want to share the heart of a loving mom made the brave choice to refuse the doctor suggestion of abortion when her baby received an adverse diagnosis in the womb.

It's a compelling and captivating look at the dignity of human life. Sarah Williams is a gifted teacher, writer and communicator and is a research professor at Regent College and a research associate at the University of Oxford and she and her husband Paul have two adult daughters and Sarah has captured her beautiful story in the book titled perfectly human. Nine months with carrion and we do have copies of that at our website. Sarah welcome to Focus on the Family, thank you. You currently residing there in the UK correct that you were able to make a visit here in New York and then out here in Colorado. Thanks for coming, thinking that we really appreciate it at share with us a little about you and Paul had you come together as a couple. How long we've been married. And at that point in the early days. What were your dreams about family, got married in 1988 RI and deadly face students together lots of dreams. We got Michael still stinks, which raised a few eyebrows. It was good wheelies height. We have quite a big family on one F6 and Paul has come for brothers.

He's one of three and I guess we always thought that we have maybe full kids, not enough about them.

I think about that analogy that I know we had our plans to assure you this is so funny.

I start thinking that in this well, let's wait a little while and then something happens… No, it's heavy now any case, it was you had kids. Children rather quickly speak about your two daughters against their names and a little bit about the meat we have Tito since Hannah and media and it did the time the events that I write about in the book Hannah was eight and mediums five and we had hyped for another baby quite quickly right but in fact, after meeting was born, I had many significant poems in my back right with it to that millionaire was a difficult pregnancy. What in the know, kind of the high level view what took place and what your concerns moving forward for both you and Paul just real significant Larry that and my back was so painful that she thinks that a joyful about having children like playing on the floor and picking them up and putting them to bed and was very painful and damn that was a long while I've doing lots of exercises and praying and hoping dreaming. Stella DeFoliart. She became pregnant with Al said to Lieut. how much time it passed between Amelia's birthday and getting pregnant with her for five years I've yes not felt like a long time writing that is a bit of distance between the two, but you're trying to recuperate physically good stronger. I would imagine yeah that's right so you prayed about having 1/3 child and how did God answer that prayer. And how did that third pregnancy start out for you so excited and seven counts and it started out to this great sense of excitement and hype and then I started being sick and I had a really severe high-power emesis, a constant being sick so it's not your typical morning sickness.

This was more severe was that of fasting 14 times a day and then having to go into hospital Tempe intravenously rehydrated.

Yes, so it was difficult, but they did a really any scan. Thinking is there something wrong, nothing showed up.

They wanted. She having twins is a party that can make you most like to edit nothing showed up but it was quite grim. But even in the grim. We was still excited thinking this will be wet that say sure and moving along and then you had that 20 week scan yet, assuming ultrasound or some kind of tests and then that original concern or a concern appeared what happened yet.

We went in in the UK line if every woman has a 20 week a regular scan and it's a screening scan in order to identify any problems, fetal abnormalities in silence. I went to the regular scan and it was a really busy day. It was Hannah's best day that you're a hero. Yes, and I've been teaching. She toils at the Univest evokes it all morning and I was really busy and I just fitted the scan in all my way home to get a birthday cake ready everything that he found a coming plans ceramic plans for you. It was just this routine thing and it was very I'm not really sentimental about scans.

I sort of have mixed feelings about them pulled even come. He was on the train on his land from London. I was hesitantly on pads and what did it show the nests put a hand on her own set this on the baby and it showed that the baby had a lethal skeletal displays.

He had a mouthful motive, the skeletal structure called the NASA flight dysplasia where the bones don't develop sufficiently to allow the proper development of the lungs, so she was okay inside doing but she was not expected to live much like she would die that socially often this is so often, Sarah woman, particularly, but her husband to in that moment, those are very difficult words to hear from a doctor there's a problem, but there's a severe problem. How did you process that you know special as you self-described is somebody who's not necessarily emotional about these things, but to hear those words that we see a severe problem with your child was an immediate reaction like a very fast reaction was that got me metal top. I got the scan model.right somebody else's believes there felt because I could see the baby on the screen you are describing what it's like to watch a baby and an ultrasound and I'm sitting that seeing the baby moving. I can't read an ultrasound seeking company right to the immediate response was just just disbelief. And I remember sitting that feeling that calls alive and thinking how can this be, and I was still in that place of really deep shock.

I think when we moved to the side frame away from the scanning room to have a meeting with the second consultant he started to talk to me about having a termination within an hour right and I was still trying to say to flight dysplasia. Driver never again so I wouldn't forget the word because I knew Paul would ask me and I need to remember and then on trying to take in a decision and I talking about coming back in the morning to tell them what we had decided to do tonight.

I couldn't quite comprehend that I was being told about stem and I show them the city sang. What would be involved in the termination because I've growing up in a Christian environment. Christian family became Christian. As for I've always thought about abortion is something that affects somebody else out. I can even really know what was involved in a termination and I remember sitting that with all the shock and Eliza shock suddenly having to take in that what was being recommended in this situation was the best medical option here was to terminate the life of the baby. I can only imagine that getting home at night and having to talk face-to-face not just over the phone, but face-to-face with your husband, Paul, and you trying to figure out what do we do do we trust God do we trust the doctors do we stand on the things we believe and not terminate the baby do we terminate the baby which is best. Is there any health risk for me all those questions you and Paul are trying to go through what was that like spiritually speaking, what was that like to wonder God, where are you in this.

How come this is happening to us, you know, Lord, if we've done a fair job living our lives where we suffering in this way.

Yeah, an old nice thoughts that you just articulated what going through my mind as I'm making Hannah's birthday cake that my mind is dying and we all said to me on the fine.

This is Hannah's birthday and we don't want for the rest of her life. The memory that this was the day we had to sneeze with. It was wise so we went through how birthday tea just these thoughts going on. It the confusion point and I looking at each other, but we didn't have time to be aligned and praying for the grace of God to get to that moment got the girls to bed and we went down to our lounge and we sat down and all green sofa and we just did not know we were just desperate and I was shocked because the one thing I didn't anticipate was my first instinct was, I just want this to be a just want them to get this fetus out of my buddies could is possible. This is a medical situation and it demands a medical fix medical response and this kind of distance mechanism was kicking in for me but I was thinking yeah I've got these principles, but this is not a normal situation when talking about a normal baby why don't we face and I just think I don't and pull in the midst of that said we would pray I can one pray because I'm I knew that being praying and praying, involve being still and I didn't want to be still.

Just wanted to be over. That is a profound statement because it speaks to the broader issue of abortion. I think when a woman doesn't know what to do or has fear. It's this instinct.

Like you said this feeling pushes get rid of judges just to get me out of the situation with the honesty of that. I mean, that's a reasonable thought. I believe reasonable and human context to say that and have that response and you know we could do this and then will be over with and then we can carry on Paul we can have tomorrow and we can try again and I was so sick had so much and I thought how can I go through the next part of the pregnancy without any hope, and that shocked me because I realize that the principles that I had were not enough to carry me through the pregnancy. For those that are listening going what you saying you guys now talk about the spiritual aspect kicking in. You've had this feeling of what's this is medical.

This fits within the framework of my faith in God. I do not believe will judge me for this. Given the fact that the baby is knocking the live all the rationalization that actually is quite right. How did you and Paul then begin to say will wait a minute, let's do it differently. Let's trust God didn't happen quite soon, really desperate and well no safe with all these tents and motions and we just cried out, we didn't even have proper language of just can't agony how walk today and an extraordinary thing happened to us sitting down on cranes wet in culture.

You sometimes hear people saying we felt God say to us, and I have no idea what they mean by that phrase until that night when I can honey describe it as a deep sense that God was sitting on that safe with us in on his back and he was saying here is a sick and dying child, will you love for me and take care of her until she dies and that changed everything because it was suddenly not about a choice that we had to make, or a rule or principle or decision, it was about God's love and it wasn't so much about all capacity to deal with this terrible situation, but about God's love for this tiny vulnerable human being that the hospital didn't even think of as a human being. And in those moments. I didn't what I felt. She's an impediment. God's love and it changed everything. Let it change the way we saw the situation we were in this day was about him and his love, and he had radically entrusted this profoundly vulnerable person to us who didn't even have the instincts that were good and right. That's powerful. You know what I love about what you're saying is the fact that hearing God's heart in the that God loves us. Each one of us, whether you're in the womb of your mother or your and 85-year-old person who's gasping for life.

Everything in between two that's God's love for us. That's what catches me with your story because we would think of God. Some of us and I would say me to its rational Lord, you know the hardship it's going on here pushes get this over with its medically appropriate. The babies knocking the live but for the creator of the universe to step in the shakes and say no show this created being created in my image show this little child, my love, and what that mean to you. She was the greatest gift God have the cost through loving God showed me his own and so the thing was, that wasn't about doing something Grendel brave or moral.

She was God's gift to us because she told us how to love somebody who needs enough right usually and vulnerable. He needed us and somehow for me from my set of rather Korea orientated strident achievement mentality shoved me the unconditional love of God and that will my sister God is not what we achieve in our capabilities and the things that we do all the things that I thought made me value but as a human being.

She didn't do any of those things. She was completely left and I left and eight changed everything for me. Sarah you are learning all of this of the 20 week gestation mark and so you have 20 more weeks to go, then you proceed from their menu had people saying what to you both may be ill placed statements as well as encouragement. I think it's important Sarah for us to hear these things because we may find ourselves in a situation where a friend of ours are a family member, even is in a similar spot carrying a baby that may not be completely healthy. What were those things that were said that encouraged you and what were some of the things that were said that were horrible. So we having this experience of opening our hearts to love someone with a gun in Lee's and we will finding ourselves. Experiencing that love and then we had to deal with other people's reactions and they were various. One of the reactions that I found nice complex to deal with with folk at chess who had different reactions but let me give you one example of one lady and she just kept saying I am praying that God is going to heal this baby.

God is going to heal. Despite God must heal this baby and I and you that what she was saying was I, Barrett that this is happening to you. I want to pray that global fix this situation and I and you she was trying to love us.

But I also wanted the baby to be healed and one time off to chat.

She just sat down with this lady and I said see this pregnancy is like two big rights and I've got a choice. One of the roads has the wet healing midnight of the top of it of any other right is God himself, and I can spend the next few weeks of mitosis life.

The next 20 weeks of mitosis life rushing around seeking God's healing all I can spend the limited time we have allowing God in the middle of the pain to help us laugh and I knew in my heart is not always like that in situations is always right. Pray for God's healing. But I also knew that I had to make sure that I wasn't trying to avoid pain. I so appreciate that observation because I think we in the West, particularly we do everything we can totally avoid pain way terrified we are and it's our goal through financial ability.

Whatever might be to dampen down that pain yet. Yet Scripture is pretty clear that the Lord is with us in the valleys and we learned so much in those valleys.

In that regard. Sometimes we forget to complete the scriptural thought of Lord, if possible, can you do this and fill in the blank save my baby but not my will be done. Your will and you were not as quick to move to that place and will get some emails and criticism that I'm even saying that, but there is this balance that we need to trust God regardless of our earthly circumstances and it's hard for us as human beings. And it's really hot to watch your children self. It's one thing to suffer yourself, but to watch iron children self that is in agony and not and it helped me to remember that God himself within the passing of the Godhead got the Fontana watch the sun suffer Sarah, your other two daughters. There were six and a as you said head and Amelia. This can be really jolting for them, and sometimes as parents is mom and dad know were so engulfed in the moment with our own pain, our own situation that we inadvertently can ignore the pain and the suffering of the siblings and then I remember that is a little boy when my mom was dying of cancer.

I was nine people thought I was just too young to be told what was happening until one day when they just told me mom's gone. It was so hard to hear it that way. I would've rather had been involved. Tell me what's happening I maybe nine but I think I know what's going on and I think it hurt me more than help me yes speak to how you dealt with and helped him it Amelia processes yes, that was it was difficult to know what to do that as Exhibit 8 is such a fairly how to but I guess that we just we made a decision to embrace carrying as a real passant right and that the life she was living in the waiting was how life right now and so we have to recognize she's a media system so they have a relationship with her right now and so finding ways to control carrying into our family as much as we could, and the girls would sink and then told my tummy and they went to date. They embraced and we went on a crazy camping trip that went wrong in her luggage and related yeah, and she was with us the night they began to relate and it was hot because we then had to recognize that they were really losing somebody real but but again you don't lose out by opening your heart with love and they responded in different ways. They really did experience the grief but I always remember a media body year off to carry and downright on a bus going into the middle of Oxford with me and a little kid to rise back on the bus was howling and screaming and his mom was trying to make and be quiet and Amelia the five euro got up to keys.

Nice and ends just said it's okay this is okay, right, and I think somehow God did something to expand that haunts and grow them as lovers of God and love his people empathetic, deep and now what's on. She's gone all the way to Athens and all the lights 11 to let with refugee children sings to them play second time she has a passion to let these kids have been displaced and somehow God put that in that haunts random.

I would've preferred my kids not to suffer, but God somehow even use the really painful things to do the things he wanted to do a nice gas hot steam Sarah. This is been so good but there's so much more to talk.

So let's come back the second day and let's continue the discussion. Thank you for being with us. Thank you for this great book, nine months with carrion perfectly human and it's really the story of Sarah and her husband Paul and their journey with carrion and the let's come back and keep the discussion going family and will encourage you to stop by your website or give us a call for your copy of this great book by Sarah Williams and we've also touched. Of course, on a number of pretender issues along the way here today and I'd like to remind you that we have carrying Christian counselors here at Focus on the Family. And if you need to talk to somebody please give us a call will schedule a time for a free consultation with one of them.

Our number is 800 the letter a in the ward family 800-232-6459 and John as we gear up for RC life 2020 event on September 26. I hope you partner with us to save babies lives. And that's the bottom line through Focus on the Family's option ultrasound program portion minded women get the opportunity to see into their innermost being. They can witness the miracle of new life, developing within them in here. The study leading of that tiny heart. After seeing their pre-born baby and receiving compassionate counseling, 54% of these women who are staring toward abortion will change course and choose life for their baby. It takes only $60 to save one baby's life. $60.

So join us in this effort today and when you pledge a monthly gift to Focus on the Family today will send you a copy of Sarah's book perfectly human as our way of saying thank you for getting in battle with us. Of course, if you can't afford to make a monthly pledge one-time gift will also help your ongoing support does allow us to reach out and place ultrasound machines and pregnancy centers around the world donate today and get your copy of perfectly human, call 800 the letter a in the ward family, or check the notes for the deals on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team. Thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family plan to be with us next time.

As we once more help you and your family.

Thriving Christ

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