May 17, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — An international pro-life and chastity speaker called on youth to save sex for marriage, and shared the story of her abortion, healing, and conversion at the annual Canadian National March for Life Youth Conference last week.
Toni McFadden, the founder of Relationships Matter, believes that having “an honest conversation about sex and relationships” is critical to helping stop abortion.
She told listeners during the online youth conference, “You’re being bombarded with a message, when it comes to sex and relationships, that is degrading, dishonest, and detrimental to you.”
“I’m not here to say that sex is bad or evil or dirty. I believe that sex is a really good thing. But I would say that sex in and of itself is incredibly powerful. Is there anything more powerful that you could do than create another human being?”
“Where do you hear about sex? TV, movies, music, your friends. So how do you know what’s true? Because commercials and TV shows, they know that sex sells. And they promote it in a way that’s going to get you to watch their show or buy their product. They could really care less about you. What they’re basically telling you is to act solely based on a feeling.”
McFadden said that those who want to get married one day need to “prepare for that right now.”
“Each and every one of you are building what I would call a foundation for your life. And you’re either building on what is true or you’re building on whatever you feel like.”
“Jesus said, ‘Therefore, everyone who listens to these messages of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on a rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, but it did not collapse because its foundation was on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.’ [Matthew 27:24-26]”
“This is the picture that I have when I think about a relationship,” continued McFadden. “The world is building relationships and marriages without the foundation of Christ. And we can see the results. If you don’t want divorce, if you want a marriage that will last until death do you part, then you have to prepare your foundation now. The culture says sex feels good, act on it. That’s like building your foundation on sand.”
“Why wait for marriage? For the very first time this man takes his body, this woman takes her body and they become like one body. In this moment, sex is about more than just a feeling. What they’re doing with their bodies is actually an example of what they just did with their lives at the altar a couple of hours ago. They brought their lives together to be one.”
“Sex is an expression of that. The only thing they’re wearing in that moment is their wedding rings, which is a symbol that sex in this moment is protected by a lifelong commitment. It’s powerful.”
“What people are doing outside of the boundary of marriage is they’re marrying their bodies, but without their lives. So either person has the freedom to do what at any time? Leave. And countless people have their hearts handed back to them in a million pieces.”
McFadden stressed the importance of setting physical boundaries in relationships before marriage, using an analogy: “We’re on a big steep hill. Let’s say this hill represents a couple. There’s a guy and girl at the top of this hill, and at the bottom of the hill [are] rocks.”
McFadden said the rocks represent things you want to avoid before marriage: “Emotional baggage, STI’s, unplanned pregnancy.”
“Where are you going to put your breaks on? I hope you said at the top of the hill. Just as gravity pulls a truck down the hill, what pulls that couple down the hill, sexually, is arousal. But just like gravity, it’s powerful.”
McFadden’s own unplanned pregnancy and abortion
McFadden went on to explain, “The reason I do this presentation is because I want to be for you what I needed when I was your age. I was born into a sandy foundation. My dad has been married three times. I never had a good picture of what marriage is supposed to look like.”
McFadden shared how during her senior year of high school, she “faced an unplanned pregnancy.”
“I had been making so many decisions based on a feeling, based on how I felt in the moment, rather than being grounded in truth. And sex will always be powerful. It doesn’t matter how you feel in the moment when you decide to do it. It always has the power to create life. And I’m in this situation now where I want to take back this decision and I can’t.”
“I was about seven weeks along, and the nurse at this abortion clinic said something to me that I will never forget.”
“When I went to get the ultrasound,” McFadded said, “the monitor was faced away from me. And now I know that was on purpose. And when I asked if I could see the monitor, she was hesitant, but when she turned it around, before I could say a word, she said, ‘See, it’s nothing. It’s just the size of a pea.’”
“Now you and I both know that’s a lie. That at seven weeks, my child’s heart had already begun to beat. That at conception, my child had its own DNA that’s separate from mine, unique to them, that could never be created again.”
“I chose to do what I did ultimately because I was selfish,” she admitted. “Ultimately, because I didn’t want my parents to find out and I wanted to hold onto this unstable relationship.”
“So I was given the RU486 pills. It starves the baby to death, and then 24 to 48 hours later, a girl will take pills on her own in her home and this second set of pills will expel the baby.”
McFadden revealed that it was a “very traumatic” experience. “Two months later, while I was in school, I ended up severely hemorrhaging. We know according to the FDA there have been 24 women who have passed away from taking these very same pills. I was in so much pain I had to have someone help me walk to the nurse’s office.”
“If any of you have seen Abby Johnson’s movie Unplanned, there’s a scene that shows very vividly what happens when you take these pills, and that’s very close to what happened to me as well,” McFadden said.
“If a girl ends up taking the first set of pills, but not the second, there is something called abortionpillreversal.com where a girl can actually go to an OBGYN who is pro-life and able to reverse that but it has to be within 48 hours of taking that first set of pills.”
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McFadden went on, “My boyfriend actually ended up breaking up with me the day after he went to the abortion clinic with me. It was devastating, and my life kind of spiraled out of control. I still wasn’t making good decisions. I think this caused me to be even more promiscuous. I thought, I’ve already done it, the shame was already there.”
“I had all this emotional baggage and I didn’t know how to deal with it. I think when you don’t have faith and you don’t have Jesus as your foundation, you’re grabbing onto anything to give you worth. And that goes back to the Matthew 7 passage. I was building my life on sand, it was shifting and changing and there was no truth under me.”
McFadden went on to say how she became a Christian in college, roughly three years later. “It changed my whole worldview. I started working for a pregnancy resource center. I would go into schools and I would speak on saving sex for marriage, and I would share my story of how for many years of my life I didn’t wait, but now I was in a place where I was waiting for my husband.”
“Little do I know that for two years someone had been looking for me. And this person had been looking for me because similar to me, God had grabbed a hold of their heart. And there were some people that this person knew they had to go back to apologize to.”
It was McFadden’s ex-boyfriend, with whom she had had her abortion. They hadn’t seen each other for over nine years.
“I’ll never forget the one thing he said to me. He said, ‘It was easier for me to leave that relationship because I didn’t want to face the fact that we ended the life of our child.’”
“And I realized at that moment that abortion does not just affect women. It also [affects] men. Why? Because God has also called men to protect, and not only did he not protect me, he did not protect our child.”
“In a miracle of all miracles, I actually became his wife less than a year later. We’ve been married now for almost twelve years. Something very special we were able to do was honor our unborn baby at our wedding. We [lit] an extra candle to honor our unborn child.”
McFadden believes that sharing her story helps others to make the decision to choose life, as well as “helping women and men who have walked the path of abortion to find healing.”
“Because the healing only came through the death and resurrection of Jesus and Christ and that’s the only reason I can present this confidently without shame, because Jesus’ blood has set me free.”