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Life Stories

This Fight is Personal

Posted by James McDonald

Psalm 139:13-16: For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them.

‘Some people say that life begins at birth. Others say that it begins at conception. But my God is so pro-life that He said “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb.”’ – Pastor Luke J. Robinson

January 22, 1973 brought a sinister welcome to abortion on demand in America. The Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade was a wake up call for the church. Demonstrations and organizations sprung up like the spring grass. But, in the 37 years that have passed, it seems many don’t bother themselves with the disturbing fact that children are being murdered in our backyards. Protests take time. Volunteering to pray in front of abortion mills is embarrassing. Life Chain Sunday usually interferes with a good football game. And it is just too cold to march in January on the anniversary of the Roe decision.

To me, the apathy is appalling. Human life is precious. Most Christians say they are “pro-life,” but what are they doing to stand against the tide? Can we not see the impact of the proverbial “slippery slope” on our culture? How can we forget the demise of the children? Why do so many pastors ignore preaching on this issue? Who will defend the weak?

If we continue to ignore what is happening, there may come a day when doctors evaluate the value of live births. They may come up with a quantitative way to assess whether or not a child is worthy to live:

•A child’s home life (HL)
•Potential contribution to society (CS)
•Physical natural endowment and physical condition at birth (NE)

They may combine these factors into some bizarre mathematical equation and come up with a Quality of Life Index (QL). If a child scores above this mark, they may then be deemed worthy to live. Fall below that mark, and they will be left to die.

Science fiction? Think again. Such a formula [(HL + CS) * NE = QL] was used by Children’s Hospital of Oklahoma, in Oklahoma City from 1977 to 1982 to evaluate children born with Spina Bifida. During this period, 24 children were determined to be better off dead. And they were left to die.

This story is important to me. You see, my wife, Stacy, was born with Spina Bifida in the 60’s, the day after her birth mother, Ginger, turned sixteen. Ginger, was one of eight children—the oldest in the household. No doubt being brought up in a home full of little ones helped develop in this young mother an understanding and appreciation for the life growing within her womb—because when faced with a crisis pregnancy, what she chose for Stacy was life. Granted, the choice was made a little easier by the fact that it was still illegal to murder a child in the womb. But even in that day there were ways to “terminate a pregnancy,” code word for killing a child. But, Ginger chose life for the baby she carried!

Ginger was allowed to hold and rock Stacy during brief visits to the hospital during her infancy. My wife was even baptized in her birth mother’s christening gown. Sadly, because Stacy was so young, she has no recollection of these short meetings.

Stacy was placed into the family of her adoptive parents when she was two years old. By God’s grace, this young couple chose to take on a child who was past infancy, loaded with hefty medical bills, and facing future difficult surgeries. Yet, despite all that, they brought Stacy home and called her their own. Years later, when God captured the heart of my wife, He revealed to her the providential Hand that had protected and guided her throughout her life.

Soon after her twenty-first birthday, after a series of incredible events, Stacy was introduced to her birth grandparents and all of her birth mother’s siblings, nieces, nephews, aunts, and uncles. She even had the opportunity to know her great-grandmother. Stacy was not able to meet her birth-mother. Ironically, Ginger was twenty-one years old when she died in a tragic automobile accident – the same age Stacy was when she was reunited with her birth-family.

Since that time, not only has Stacy grown to appreciate her adoptive parents in new ways, she has also grown close to her birth family—especially her grandparents. When asked about her thoughts on God’s providential hand in her life, she says this:

“I stand amazed and humbled that God spared my life; and, by His grace, He gave me the chance to raise ten beautiful children for His glory.”

When I gaze upon our children, I marvel at the way God weaved His thread of Providence throughout the intricate fabric of Stacy’s life. And yes, I am thankful for the precious gift of that life—a gift that is continuing into future generations.

This gift of life, given by God, is stolen from so many. In our human deception, we are too often convinced by the Enemy that some precious souls are not fit to live. Some children are conceived during an “inconvenient” time of life; and, since the child is often not even considered human yet, murder is treated as a form of “birth control.” Other times, we are persuaded to believe that the life of the mother is more important than the life of the child, and a precious life is snuffed out. Other times, even live babies outside the womb–at least partially outside–are not safe, and children are butchered as they are being delivered.

May we continue to fight for the sanctity of all life. May we view it in the pre-born, the handicapped, the elderly, the helpless, and the infirmed as a gift from the Lord. It is the God-breathed spirit of our Heavenly Father (Genesis 2:7) that gives quality to life. Such worth is not determined by a doctor or by the state. And it cannot be stolen from them without consequence – for their blood cries out to God (Genesis 4:10).

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