A little over two years ago, I received an email from Frankie, a regular listener to Breakpoint:
Over the past several months, I have appreciated and enjoyed your discussions on fertility/surrogacy/IVF. Just last week, my wife and I found out that we will not be able to naturally conceive. We both come from large families, love kids, and had dreamed of having many of our own. We know God is faithful, and we fully trust Him; even so, this is a heavy emotional burden and our hearts are broken.
Our doctors have told us IVF is a viable option for us and, given certain factors, has a high chance of success in our case. I have never in my life wanted to rationalize anything so badly. … But ultimately, we just can’t go forward with IVF. I know it could satisfy one of the deepest desires of our hearts, but the cost is unacceptable. A little boy or girl created with our own genetic material is not morally worth the many inevitable deaths of his or her embryonic brothers and sisters. Forgoing IVF is hard, but we have peace that it is right and good.
Thank you to Breakpoint for helping us understand these issues from a Christian, pro-life worldview. Breakpoint’s analysis of these issues was a crucial building block of the moral framework we are using now to confidently say “no” to IVF when our flesh wants to say “yes.” Your labor in the service of the Gospel has made this burden so much easier to bear. Praise God for the work you are doing, and a thousand thank-yous for being such faithful servants.
Emails like this remind me just how confusing it can be to follow Christ in this cultural moment, whether knowing what to say to someone who doesn’t share our worldview, or knowing how to think about something brand new made possible by technology. Still, God has called us to this moment, not another. Chuck Colson founded the Colson Center and this daily commentary Breakpoint to help Christians develop confidence in the truth of a Christian worldview so they could face the challenges of life today with courage and a clarity that can seem elusive.
The commitment and sacrifice made by Frankie and his wife Kelsey to do the hard, right thing inspired and encouraged me that Christians need what Breakpoint provides every day, and that God can ultimately be trusted in our obedience. I told them I’d pray that God would honor their obedience and bless them with children.
Last week, Frankie wrote again.
I wrote to you and the Breakpoint team a couple years ago about my and my wife’s struggle with infertility, thanking you all for giving us courage and information we needed to navigate those rough waters. … You responded kindly, saying you prayed that God would grant us children in a way faithful to the Gospel.
I thought it might encourage you to hear He has done just that. Once we decided to forgo IVF … we stumbled on embryo adoption, which we remembered had been discussed on Breakpoint. Embryo adoption seemed perfect for us: We could have children, my wife was able to use the gift of her womb, and we could give preborn babies a shot at life outside a freezer. We jumped in right away. We signed up with Nightlight’s snowflake embryo adoption program, got matched quickly, and adopted several preborn children. Our first transfer resulted in a miscarriage in the fall of 2021. But God is faithful, and almost seven weeks ago on October 12, my wife gave birth to our little girl, Isabelle Suzanne. …
We know there will continue to be challenges: Isabelle has a fixable but serious congenital heart defect (and, even more intractable, a human nature). But this is the Lord’s path for us, and we say with Mary, “Let it be done to me according to thy will.” We are grateful, not just in spite of these infertility, adoption, miscarriage, and heart defect struggles, but for them. He has used all of this to draw us closer to Him.
Thank you, again, for your service and your ministry. God has used your work to bring us a child in a Gospel-centered, imago Dei-affirming way. We cannot thank you deeply enough for helping us live lives of moral integrity. And your work’s effects haven’t stopped with us. We have chosen to be quite open with our story, and several families in our extended orbit are now pregnant through or are considering embryo adoption. Who knows how many preborn babies will be saved from freezers because of your work highlighting IVF and embryo adoption.
I hope we will always be amazed and humbled that God chooses to use the Colson Center to equip His people. Praise God for His kindness and faithfulness to Frankie, Kelsey, and little Isabelle. And to all of you who support Breakpoint and other Colson Center programs with your prayers and financial generosity, be encouraged that God is at work, and thank you for joining with us in this calling.
To give a tax-deductible gift to support Breakpoint and the Colson Center, please go to colsoncenter.org/december.
For more resources to live like a Christian in this cultural moment, go to colsoncenter.org.
Note: Frankie’s emails have been edited following Colson Center standards.
Publication date: December 5, 2022
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Jacek Sopotnicki
The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily reflect those of Christian Headlines.
BreakPoint is a program of the Colson Center for Christian Worldview. BreakPoint commentaries offer incisive content people can't find anywhere else; content that cuts through the fog of relativism and the news cycle with truth and compassion. Founded by Chuck Colson (1931 – 2012) in 1991 as a daily radio broadcast, BreakPoint provides a Christian perspective on today's news and trends. Today, you can get it in written and a variety of audio formats: on the web, the radio, or your favorite podcast app on the go.
John Stonestreet is President of the Colson Center for Christian Worldview, and radio host of BreakPoint, a daily national radio program providing thought-provoking commentaries on current events and life issues from a biblical worldview. John holds degrees from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (IL) and Bryan College (TN), and is the co-author of Making Sense of Your World: A Biblical Worldview.