When diagnosing a problem, we must first try to find the most obvious and natural explanation before moving on to explain it in more complex or less obvious ways.
Pastor Jones was perplexed. For the fourth time in a month Cynthia, a 24-year-old, single woman, had come to see him, each visit more puzzling than the last.
Cynthia had grown up in his church, where her parents were long-standing members. Cynthia had professed faith at a youth meeting when she was 14 and had been a leader in the youth group before going away to college. Now she was home again, looking for a job.
At her first session with Pastor Jones, Cynthia explained that two years earlier she had started dating a young man. They became serious but fought often and frequently broke up.
"A year ago, I discovered I was pregnant," she finally said. "And against my better judgment, I had an abortion."
Troubled by both the relationship and the abortion, she felt "locked in," unable to extricate herself from either the ...1