The Shedding of Innocent Blood
Chelsea is a young teenager, barely seventeen. In the early autumn sunset, her silhouette is both strong and graceful. The sun casts a long shadow at this time of day. On the lake shore, she stands alone, her long, blonde hair blows across her tear-stained face, and sticks to her cheeks and lips. Another tear rolls down her cheek as the car door slams shut. The engine roars, dust flies, and she watches helplessly as her now ex boyfriend, Jason, drives away.
He doesn’t slow down.
He doesn’t look back.
He won’t be returning.
Her heart is shattered.
She looks down, tears falling like rain, drenching her shirt, she clutches her tummy. Uncontrollable sobs of anguish escape her quivering lips…
New life grows.
She wipes her tears on her sleeve and gets in her car. Her mind races. “I can’t believe I am pregnant. I can’t believe he left me. He said he loved me. What will dad say? Mom is going to kill me. What will Pastor Dave say? What will my friends say? I am only in grade 12, I am supposed to go to college…I am just a baby myself! How can a baby have a baby? What is going on?! What have I done!?”
Slowly, she approaches her home and drives right past, and she keeps on driving, aimlessly, searching frantically in her mind for an answer, trying to make sense of her young chaotic life, for comfort, for something, for anything.
She gets home too late, or too early in the morning. Mom is still awake, pacing by the window; dad is sound asleep. “Why haven’t you answered your phone!?” Her mom scolds her…
It must still be at the lake. “Jason broke up with me. Mom, please…” Mom leads her up stairs, wipes her tears, kisses her head, and tucks her in bed… but sleep does not come…not on this night…
The next morning she speaks to her school counsellor and she weighs her options.
“The baby will go to heaven right?”
“God please forgive me…”
Confused and alone, afraid of the gossipers and the haughty eyes of her family and church, she books the appointment that will cover the shame of her sexual sin. Maybe this way no one will ever know.
She sheds yet another of a seemingly endless supply of tears.
Walking the lake shore, she finds her phone sitting on a stone, untouched, right where she left it. Missed texts from mom, dad, her best friend Grace, and pastor Dave, all concerned about her not coming home… but nothing from Jason… her heart sinks into hollowness and despair. Is there any other option? She doesn’t know. She can’t keep the baby can she? She is too young. The baby won’t have a father. She can’t stand the anguish of the secret sin in her heart so with barely any battery power left, and less resolve in her heart, she calls her best friend Grace, “Please come to the lake. I need you…”
Her phone dies.
An hour passes.
An old green Jetta pulls up, a door slams, and another young teenager runs to the lake shore and hugs her best friend. Sobbing, she confides , “I am pregnant. It’s Jason’s . But he doesn’t care. He left. I am going to have an abortion…it is the only way…”
They talk for hours…hardly aware of the passage of time, as only BFF’s can.
Weeping, Grace hugs her distraught friend, and together they sit on the lake shore, head on shoulder on head, holding hands in silence, and staring out over the serenely still lake. The sun sets beyond the horizon in a brilliant display of orange and pink. A solitary loon upon the water flaps its wings and breaks the silence with an eerily beautiful and haunting call.
Grace whispers, “His creation is so beautiful.”
Yeah. It really is…
Grace look s at her friend, and says, “Chels, it will be difficult, but there is another way. Your baby does not have to die to cover up the fact you slept with Jason… Jesus already died for that!”
But what about the people? The pain, the gossip, the judgment? How can I raise a baby alone? Life will be so different…it already is.
“Yes people will talk. They’ll probably call you names behind your back, but Jesus loves you and so do your parents, and so does Pastor Dave…and so do I. We’ll always be there to help you. And you will love this baby. You already do.”
Chelsea just heaves silent, gasping, sobs…
“Please don’t hide your shame. Through the shedding of innocent blood, God in His grace has provided a way for your shame to be covered… but not the shedding of your baby’s innocent blood. Through the shedding of Jesus’ innocent blood. You know He laid down His own life for you. Jesus shed his blood for you, so that you don’t have to shed your child’s blood….”
With her tears forming tiny liquid bridges from eyelids to nose to lips, Chelsea manages a weak smile as she remembers the promises of God. She hugs her friend and they say a short prayer together, consisting mainly of tears. Everything will be ok. The two young ladies sit on the lake shore, in silence, watching the moon rise above the horizon…
“I feel better, but my mom is still going to kill me…”