Friday, August 7, 2009

May I Ask Your Thoughts?

A reader wrote to The Watchman with a question regarding my blog on abortion and Volvos: "Without wanting to take any particular side in the argument, may I ask for your thoughts about medical cases where the decision for an abortion is offered as an alternative to maternal death if the pregnancy proceeds?"

My thoughts? From my perspective the situation represents the worse case scenario for any couple to face. A couple reached a point in their marriage where children are desired and then suddenly their dreams, hopes, and desires are dashed. Making it far worse, they face a terrible decision, to risk carrying the child to term, endangering the mother, losing a spouse, or terminating the life they've created in their union of love. The decision is a heart rendering situation and a moral conundrum. I'm sure it has been faced by many couples. Each feeling their way forward in this dark passage of their life, hoping they made the right decision, all the while looking for a light to give them assurance in the end all will be well.

For my part, the decision is an intensely personal and private decision. The community should not look upon what ever decision is made negatively. I'm not a theologian, but in my understanding, our loving Father who created us in His own image, would not condemn an individual for either committing the abortion or opting to carry the baby to term in this situation, if their motives were genuinely driven by a desire to do what is best/right.

Where this situation gets murky is the interpretation of "life threatening
condition" and how one arrived at the point of decision. There are
individuals and medical providers who will look for any excuse to abort
a child, thus the "life of the mother" reason is a convenient retreat
when other reasons are not available. Is the decision reached on a whim, the word of one planned parenthood doctor or made after searching one's heart and gaining greater wisdom from other objective physicians.

However, again, what mortal can know the true motive of another person's heart? My animosity against abortion is its indiscriminate use as a general population control method. The abortion practice results in the unintended consequence of devaluing human life by our society and further degeneration of moral values its practice begets. When one devalues human life as a routine practice, then, as I wrote earlier, it is so much easier to justify doing even more evil. Without thinking or reflection. Our hearts become hard and the ends justify any means.

To me one of the most comforting passages in the New Testament is in
Romans 7:21 through 8:4. This passage tells of Paul's struggles to do
what is righteous in the face of his human nature to be sinful. The
glorious part is despite our best effort we will still be in sin, but
can find solace in the fact that Jesus negated sin by his sacrifice on
the cross. "Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are
in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of
life set me free from the law of sin and death."(Romans 8:1-2) Thus if
one makes either decision, whether to abort the child to save the mother
or to risk death in the birth of a child, we are free in Christ Jesus if
we do so from a spirit of righteous.

The Christian community's acceptance is so vital for the positive outcome of the
individuals involved. We should be ultra supportive, extra compassionate, and deeply merciful to any one or couple that must face this challenge. For if they are not yet come into a relationship with Jesus, a hard heart may forever drive them a way, rightly condemning our hypocrisy. If they are our Christian brother and sister, then our respect for their decision can lead to deeper love of one another and ever more devotion to our Savior. My thoughts? Do as Jesus would do, simply love them as they are, showing them the light they yearn to see at the end of this dark path.

1 comment:

  1. I know several couples who have had to make this terrible decision, always after weeks of medical tests and varied consultations trying to avoid this particular conclusion. Truly this is a case of 'which path through Hell shall we take?'

    As you point out in your last two lines: Loving them where they are for who they are, as Jesus would do, has been the better way to bring light into their darkness.