I Am Going Way Out Onto Thin Ice Here

OK. I’ve been thinking about it for awhile, and I’m going to do it here. Post on abortion. For most of the last 2 decades, since I have been aware of this issue, I have said nothing. Nothing. My stance has been probably one from the strict pro-life side of things although I would never picket a clinic or put up crosses or go to pro-life meetings or all that stuff. My stance was really just be default. Well, I have gotten more and more irritated with the way most seriously pro-life groups of which I am aware (important distinction here as I am not trying to lump all groups into one description) seem to be at least slightly militant and slightly obscene in their methods of opposition. Please, please, please keep in mind that I am treading very lightly here. I do not want to tick anybody off, make enemies, end up with toilet paper on my yard, and all that stuff. Everybody play nice please. I am just making observations and asking questions and finally saying something.

What has finally set me off is receiving an email from someone with which I am slightly acquainted. This email dealt with a local provider of abortion services. It suggested that pictures be taken of the smoke stack at his clinic and then used in material talking about how babies were being burned. Of course this was supposed to be used in support of Christian anti-abortion activity. And this email struck me as being rather judgmental of people who are pro-choice and rather judgmental of abortion providers. This person who sent it has put themselves out there as a grace offering follower of Christ. It struck me that the grace she offers may only stretch far. So I am through being silent.

Now don’t get me wrong. I think abortion is a tragic thing. And I am not in support of it. But I am also not in support of the way the current pro-life movement opposes it. I think it is geared in completely the wrong direction and starts in the wrong place. Instead of focusing on babies, I think it ought to focus on the mom’s and dad’s.

It is a horrible thing that babies are being killed. It really is. But, they cannot be brought back. They are no longer hurting. They are with God. And what better place is there than that. But the pro-life movement seems so intent on showing what happened to those babies. What if we were instead to focus on the moms and dads? They are the ones who are really hurting. They are the ones we can actually help. They are the ones who need grace. They are the ones who are having to live with the decisions that were made. They are the ones who need love.

I understand that whole point is to prevent from happening to more babies that which has happened to previous babies. But is it working? Have the abortion laws been overturned? Have people moved closer together? Or have they grown farther apart? If abortion laws are overturned will it really stop abortion? Do people go through with abortions to actually spite the militant pro-life movement? Is the current path really doing anything at all? I can tell you from where I sit, it looks as if it is accomplishing nothing.

But what if we were to focus on the parents? What if we were to switch gears and meet them with grace in the places where they hurt? What if all the pro-life movement put all their energy into helping the hurt and offering alternatives and gave up on the angry opposition? I know that there are places where alternatives are offered, but that is not what is in the media as the face of the pro-life movement. What if that became the face of the pro-life movement, grace, love, help, instead of anger? Would that start to bring about the moral change in our culture that will be needed make abortion rare? Changing the laws won’t really work. Legislating morality has failed time and time again.

I am no longer going to vote for public office based on this single issue. Before now, I was told that I didn’t have a choice. To vote for someone who was not pro-life was sinful. I do not believe that to be true any longer. There are many moral issues that can be traded back and forth and none of them is any more or less moral than the others.

I am not certain that this needs to be the decisive issue of our time. We act as if abortion has been occurring for 30 years. Like it was something new. Like America created it and so we are going to burn in hell because of it. It has actually been around for thousands of years. It is not a new issue to God. He has seen much more of it than we. I think he probably has a handle on it without us interfering with it in a hateful manner.

One last item. I think the hate against the physicians performing abortions also needs to stop. It is not the way Christ would treat them. I have met the local provider for these services, and he truly believes that he is providing a service that is much needed for women. He is passionate about it. I certainly think his passion is misplaced, but fighting him with anger and hatred and threats will not change his mind. Maybe love and grace will. That is what Jesus offers him. I have heard some say that they just wish that God would strike him dead. Well, God isn’t going to do that. God will forgive him.

So I think that is what I wanted to say. I welcome your comments, but I am not trying to tick anybody off or start a fight or make anybody feel bad. I am just putting some thoughts out there. If I have pushed your buttons or offended anyone in any way, I sincerely apologize. My only intent is to have a different kind of discussion about it.

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3 responses to “I Am Going Way Out Onto Thin Ice Here

  1. hey. good thoughts. touchy issue. I do agree with your reaction. If an individual (that had an abortion) would see the signs that they put up, it would kill their spirits and push them from god. They would see the judgement of God before they would see the grace. It could be devastating. Their goal is to change behavior. Simple psychology would suggest that it only motivates the offending individual to do the opposite. Harsh judgment works only for beaten down religious types. (that’s an overgeneralization, but smacks of truth)

    I might be wrong, but isn’t an abortion the same (in pro-life views) as killing a born person? I guess i’m saying that I never understood why chrisitans would be so pro-war yet anti-abortion. I’m probably missing something there. I know that it FEELS different but it isn’t. In some perspectives it’s worse.

    Just my thoughts. i hope that people are careful and respectful in their responses.

  2. I want to second the motion…”I hope that people are careful and respectful in their responses.”

  3. freestyleroadtrip

    Matches, you bring up a great point on the war and abortion thing. You could add in capital punishment too, which it seems to me is more about vengeance and revenge than it is about punishment. It seems that the family’s of victims always speak about the death penalty with a tone of hatred and anger and bitterness toward the convicted. Certainly this would be a very human reaction, and I am not in any way trying to make light of it.

    Another area where I see similar conflict is with in vitro fertilization. I know a lot of Christians who are very much in favor of this practice while they vehemently oppose abortion. I even had one Christian physician tell me that the greatest thing we can do as Christians is to create life. I am not sure where he gets that from. I don’t understand this. If the pro-life way of looking at things is that life begins at conception, how can one knowingly create 10-15 or 20 little lives in a dish by uniting sperm and egg and then put 8-10 of them in the uterus hoping that one will take hold and turn into a pregnancy. How can you know from the outset that you are going to sacrifice 8 or 9 of those lives. Or how can you run the risk of all 8 or 10 of them taking hold and ending up with one of those stories. Most of those pregnancies end in the death of some or most of the babies. Only the few successes make it into the news. And then how can you know that there is a problem with what to do with the remaining 8 or 10 lives that are left in the dish and then frozen indefinitely until somebody decides what is best in the future.

    It just seems like such a double standard, to be against destroying life by abortion but to be for destroying life by in vitro fertilization. Please do misread me here, I am not passing judgment on in vitro, I am just pointing out the inconsistency of having a pro-life stance and a pro in-vitro stance. It seems to me that the pro in-vitro stance is actually more in line with a pro-choice view.

    Well now it seems I have put another post in my comment section. Maybe I will link to it.

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