There’s been a lot of politics these days as states decide on new abortion or anti abortion laws. The abortion argument has been around since the ancient days of sacrificing new borns to Moloch, but in our country it’s been around since the days of Margaret Sanger who was a proponant of forced sterilization and culling of undesireables (mentally challenged, physically handicapped and blacks) under the guise of reproductive “rights”. This article though isn’t intended to be political, because abortion, like every other issue in our country ranging from 2nd Amendment rights, to Black (all) lives matter and so called social justice isn’t really political- it’s a matter of the heart.
For as long as I’ve had independent thoughts apart from what I was taught, I’ve been pro life. Even before the words abortion and euthanasia were known to me, and before I knew what those words meant, I have recognized that life is something special. Dare I say even before I realized that God is the Author, Creator and Giver of life, and that He knows us before we are even born, that life is sacred.
Unfortunately the sanctity of life has mattered little to a world which doesn’t believe in or recognize, or even more, ignores and is complacent about a Holy and loving Creator, we now have generations in which life is cheap and expendable.
The world’s definition of life is how productive one’s life is, how happy one can make it, and how successful one becomes (more on that in a future article). We’ve come to a full circle, to where sacrifices to idols is proudly encouraged and those who disagree are somehow anti everything. We’ve come to a place where people can judge another’s life and give the final decree on whether one should be allowed to live or die- everything from abortionists to doctors, lawyers and judges can determine when someone’s life has become non productive (inconvenient) enough to give them either a death sentence or aid them in killing themselves.
Is this because the church has been silent on the abortion front? No. Many from every denomination has marched for life, spoken from the pulpit on the evils of abortion and given every argument to women on the sanctity of life. And while there’s nothing wrong necessarily with any of that (I’ve been in march for life events as well) but during these years, decades of the fight for life, how often have Christians and Christian organizations tried to change the heart of individuals so they recognize the fact that life is sacred and each individual is apart from another individual as far as spirit and soul, yet a part of God’s creation and plans through sharing the Gospel message?
Face it. God has given us all free will, and the freedom to make choices for ourselves. Yes, a lot of us, actually everyone, would like that others conform their choices to what we believe- and that also goes for everything from Constitutional rights, political ideologies and personal & religious choices. But the fact is, we all choose daily on how we will live our lives.
I can’t tell another woman what to do- even though I don’t believe the “my body, my choice” argument because I believe in a whole other life involved, a new body, which is known by God. I have never walked in the shoes of someone who’s had to make a choice whether to carry or terminate a pregnancy, and can’t judge anyone for the decision they find that they have to make.
All I can do is care about them and help them know that (for those considering) there are other real choices out there- even though none are easy. And for those who’ve had one, or even more than one, show them a love that Jesus showed to me when I was still yet an enemy to God. All I can do is tell them the truth in love, about a God who loves them so much that He gave His only begotten Son to die in their place- and that no matter what we’ve done, He will forgive us for all of it if we only trust on Him and ask. I can pray for them, and I can show them that they aren’t alone. But I can’t tell her what to do, because I haven’t been there, and she has to make her choice by the free will God has given her.
We all choose, and that goes for choosing for ourselves when we want to exit life- on our terms. Again, I can’t judge a person who lives in physical or mental pain to the point where they feel their lives are torturous. I’ve known a few folks who live in unimaginable pain daily yet still smile and encourage others, giving immeasurably to this world. Unfortunately the right to die issue has a personal connection when my cousin decided that he’d had enough of a life of pain and limited mobility and in the words of his sisters and others who supported his decision, died in peace and courageously on his own terms.
Again, I have no right to judge, although the thought of my cousin taking that way out makes me sad still. He was paralyzed in his teens and had been a quadropalegic ever since. One thing I did learn through his experience, is that even when one is paralyzed from the neck or shoulders down, they can still be in a lot of pain. Especially when they aren’t able to feel when something is wrong, and infections can grow to the point of being dangerous.
I can’t imagine the kind of daily help he and millions of others need on a daily basis, for basic things the rest of us take for granted. And I can’t imagine having to be in pain every waking hour. There have been many times however over my life where I have had thoughts of just wanting to stop, giving up, because things were too hard, too emotionally hurtful and too pain filled. All I can do is thank God that He gave me the knowledge that even when I feel as useless or insignificant, He doesn’t, and that there is a very real, very important reason He allows us to go through things that make us want to quit. We can’t always understand in the midst of things- no matter how hard, painful or horrific they may be, that something good can come out of it all, if we just hold on and trust Him through.
But, take it from omeone who HAS been there. Who does live her life with very limited mobility, and constant pain. You’ve seen her before here, and I’ve watched this interview a few times. In fact I’ve had this on my mind for months now wanting to write about how our lives are worth fighting for and living for. This is an important discussion for us all to have, but one that is not discussed nearly enough.
I wish I could have known and seen this before my cousin died. Although it’s been years since I’ve seen him, and too many miles apart, I wish I could have found a way to tell him to hang in there, from someone who knew the same pain he’d gone through. I can’t support the dying with dignity argument. And like Joni, I can’t accept the notion that choosing to end your life is courageous anymore than a person who shoots his brains out, and leaves his bloody body for his loved ones to find is courageous. But again, people make personal choices, and I can’t judge them for it. Only try and change hearts so they know God loves them, has a plan for them and that there is life worth living in spite of it all.
But how can we change our society? Through politics? Well, we can keep trying, but you can’t legislate morality, and we sure haven’t seen any political victories in sanctity of life/abortion arenas in the 40 plus years that abortion has been legal. We’ve only seen it grow to now partial birth abortion and more acceptance of infanticide are becoming the norm, and also an acceptance of mercy killing and suicide.
So how do we change things? By changing hearts.
What is up to all of us who are Christian is not to judge or condemn those who are pro abortion and pro euthanasia or ‘death with dignity’, but to tell them about Jesus. Whether they choose to listen is up to them, and between them and God.