The Power of an Ultrasound

In Papua New Guinea, seeing her baby and hearing its heartbeat changed one woman’s mind about abortion.

From Message magazine issue "Wonderfully Made"

I wish I could remember her name. Her face is still clearly etched in my mind.

It was an ordinary day at the clinic when she walked in, but the outcome was one I will never forget.

The young woman had scheduled an appointment to discuss removing a large, protruding hernia. During the examination, I realized there was some rather unexpected news that I needed to share with her. Like many women who walked through the clinic’s doors, she was pregnant.

Hearing this, shock clouded her face. She walked out of the clinic, distraught and unsure of her next steps. She already had four kids and wasn’t sure if she could handle another. And on top of that, this pregnancy meant her surgical procedure would need to wait. Her condition was not life-threatening, and it didn’t merit the risk of anesthesia during a pregnancy.

The next day, looking up from some paperwork I saw her marching into the clinic—a woman on a mission. She planted herself in front of me and stated, rather forcefully, “I want this pregnancy terminated.”

I paused and considered her statement. As a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, I couldn’t destroy the precious life he was forming inside her.

As I began to explain this, I guided the young woman into the ultrasound room. I told her that I couldn’t terminate the pregnancy but that I would examine her and present her with some helpful next steps.

On one wall of the ultrasound room hung a poster outlining early fetal development. On another, a poster said, “Take my hand not my life.” An educated woman, my patient read the information, silently processing it as I prepped her for an ultrasound. And God began softening her heart.

As the 12-week baby came into view, she stared at the screen. For the first time since she’d learned of her pregnancy, she saw that there was a baby. In an instant, she fell in love with the tiny baby.

Knowing her fears, I assured her that our clinic would care for her and love her through the delivery. No questions asked. No obligation for her to raise the child. If she wanted, she could even leave the baby with us to find a loving, adoptive home.

She left with tears in her eyes, a different kind of determination written across her face—her mission had changed.

A couple months later, I had the joy of delivering her healthy, pink, chubby girl, dressing her in brand new clothes, wrapping her in a blanket, and placing her into the smiling woman’s arms.

With tears in her eyes, once again, the mother turned to me and said the minute that she saw her baby during the ultrasound, she fell in love

Learn More about Lori and her ministry here.