She was sixteen when she dropped out of school to marry. They had three children together, but she was busy sleeping around during the marriage. When she was pregnant with a son that wasn’t her husband’s, she gave it up in a private adoption. When she got pregnant again with another son that was another different man’s than her husband, she gave it up for a private adoption as well. Her husband got tired of her sleeping around and they divorced.
She got pregnant a couple years later but refrained from marrying the baby’s father, this time a girl. She kept this girl, and then gave birth to another girl about a year later, from yet a different man. Only this time she married a man (who wasn’t the girl’s father) the day before her daughter’s birth. Two years later she gave birth to her eighth child, another son. Two years later she was murdered; her body was pulled from a river with a light cord tied around her neck.
The remaining three children in her custody were taken from her when the youngest was just weeks old, because she didn’t come home from her night out. She never got custody of them back. They were placed in foster homes and eventually adopted out.
She had addictions that wouldn’t stop… Addictions to sex, alcohol, nicotine and drugs.
She should have aborted the five children with five different dads. Her life was a mess and scandal permeated each of their births. Three of them would go through some of the foster care system, and we know how bad that can be. Two of those three suffered abuses and traumas that would take decades to heal, and some of those wounds are still not healed. The other one is serving a life sentence for a murder committed at eighteen years old.
While she was at it, she should have aborted the two boys born out of adultery. Her husband refused to raise them. It would have been justified.
…But it wasn’t legal until after her eighth was born.
So these poor children had to suffer being born into this world with the deck stacked very much against them. There would be grave consequences for at least three of those five.
The burden of those unwanted children born in a ghastly untimely manner would take its toll on other people. Other people would have to raise them. Other people would have to clean up someone else’s mess. Other people would fail these children and create even more obstacles for these children to overcome or be obliterated over.
What a mess. This is why abortion should be legal. No child should ever be unwanted. No child should be subjected to some of the horrors these children saw and experienced.
Just think, if abortion had been legal when this woman was busy whoring around, at least five lives would have been spared the consequences of abandonment, neglect, rejection and abuse.
In fact, I wouldn’t even be here. I would have been spared literal decades of abuses, abandonment, rejection and trauma.
For that woman was my mother.
And if I had never been born, which anyone with reason would understand why I should have been aborted, then three of the most beautiful people you will ever meet would never have been born either.
My first born is getting her doctorate at 22 years old. She had her associate’s at 17, her master’s at 20, and will have her doctorate completed at 24. She’s brilliant, inquisitive, compassionate and intensely ambitious at bringing help and bettering lives. She has an avid hunger for learning and growing and applying what she has learned. She is physically and inwardly beautiful. She challenges ruts of thinking. She brings reason into a conversation, and light everywhere she goes. She is a delight.
My second born is a whiz at computers, and can do complex math in his head. He has rejected the status quo for his living standards in almost every way. He thinks for himself, is fiercely loyal, and has the driest humor that leaves our family in stitches. He is strong and protective, and has a deep desire to please his God. He has keen gifts in the spiritual and mental categories, and is proficient with weapons, both physical and spiritual. He was a promise to his dad, my husband, before he was in my womb.
My third born is the firecracker. She’s the one whose creative skills surpass those trained in art. Her artwork, her eye for detail, her expression of emotion have made a name for her. She is a gifted actress as well as beautiful enough to model. She put herself through auto mechanic courses and works on cars, drives a motorcycle, and passed lifeguard certification with no training or prior swim instruction. She is outspoken for women’s rights and equality and is a loud voice regarding crimes against women. She is fiercely independent and beautifully wild.
If my mother had aborted me, four lives presently living would never have graced this earth – not to mention any lives they bring forth.
If my mother had aborted one of her sons born in adultery, I would never have my best friend. And his three sons, all strong, healthy, responsible young men, would not be here either. So take out those two inconvenient and unwanted babies, and you lose six other lives along the way.
But anyone can see why it would have been “reasonable” for my mother’s babies to be aborted. Scandalous, inconvenient, untimely, unwanted….
It’s all about “choice”, after all.
But how do we choose? We can’t see the future. We don’t know if today’s heartaches will turn into tomorrow’s joys. We don’t know. We’re finite, limited to time, making decisions based on what we know right now. If we were honest, we’d know we really don’t know what’s best for us long-term based on our current circumstances.
Almost none of us can accurately predict what ten years from now is going to look like for us in our lives. And death is so permanent.
But if we were really being honest, when you cut past the lies and the deception of “pro-choice”, what you really have is idolatry. People playing God. We think we know best about what we want, or what we need. We think we can project from our current state of mind into the tapestry of a full life, disregarding the temporary emotions and circumstances as temporary. Instead we cast from our present condition and make decisions that have long-term implications, permanent repercussions, as though we are God.
Do you know why Job is so profoundly poignant? It’s not because he reflects both the light and the dark in a human heart. It’s because we learn that all answers are found in God.
Through no fault of his own, Job found his present circumstances appalling, a trial of such degree any human would want death as an alternative. In the third chapter of Job we read Job’s words:
Job 3:3-4, 11 [NASU]
Let the day perish on which I was to be born,
And the night which said, ‘A boy is conceived.’
May that day be darkness;
Let not God above care for it,
Nor light shine on it.
Why did I not die at birth,
Come forth from the womb and expire?
This is a man whose current suffering and the trials before him make him wish he had never been born. In fact, he calls the day he was born to be accursed (vs. 8). Surely this is what the pro-choice movement centers on. If our life circumstances are so dark, so painful, so full of fear and uncertainty or trauma and trial, we should not have to endure them. We should be the masters of our own fate. We should dictate the worth or unworthiness of a life, whether it’s our own or one we’ve been entrusted with. We should, in essence, be our own gods. We should be the ones to make such calls.
And if the book of Job ended at chapter three, this may very well be the conclusions we could draw.
But it doesn’t end there.
No. The waters get muddied by some poor counsel from Job’s friends, and Job’s personal lamentations. But then, the Creator of life itself speaks. And while you and I may think that God should look down in pity on Job, for the horrible circumstances and pain he finds himself in through no fault of his own, that is not God’s reaction at all! No, God’s reactions are quite uncalculated to those of us looking for a warm fuzzy, or a tender, compassionate response.
God comes in a whirlwind and says this (Job 38:2-3), “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Now gird up your loins like a man, and I will ask you…” In other versions it says, “Now brace yourself like a man…”
Then Scripture records God’s words as asking Job about the intricacies of life, the origins of things, the sources of power, etc. Not what you’d expect? Me either. But it is exactly what we need.
After a bit of this discourse, God then asks Job (40:2), “Will the faultfinder contend with the Almighty? Let him who reproves God answer it.” The ancient Hebrew for that word we translated faultfinder actually means, “to grapple, to hold a controversy”, and the one who reproves means “to be right, correct, argue”. So this is one who holds a controversy because they think they’re right.
This is the “pro-choice” movement in a nutshell. They have contended they have the correct wisdom and understanding to make the choice for life based on their own understanding, based on their circumstances and feelings at the time. They have made their own minds, wills and emotions their god. They have contended with the author of life and determined they know better – that they are right.
Over fifty-five million American babies have been aborted since the Supreme Court made their ruling that it was “legal”. We have indeed played God with life. Almost five decades of innocent American lives have been sacrificed on the altar of idolatry, man playing God. If you want to talk about a holocaust, this is it.
Job rightly answered God like this, “Behold, I am insignificant; what can I reply to You? I lay my hand on my mouth. Once I have spoken, and I will not answer; Even twice, and I will add nothing more.”
Job has clearly come to understand the error of his thinking. And again, we may be tempted to think now God will reply in pity and compassion. Yet God’s reply is this,
“Now gird up your loins like a man; I will ask you, and you instruct Me. Will you really annul My judgment? Will you condemn Me that you may be justified? Or do you have an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like His? Adorn yourself with eminence and dignity, and clothe yourself with honor and majesty.”
God tells Job AGAIN to brace himself! He shows Job that his contention is an attempt to annul God’s judgment, and that Job’s condemnation of his difficult trials is an effort to justify himself. Then He challenges Job to actually BE like God if he’s going to play God. Go ahead and make the sun rise, and the tide come and go. Go ahead and make sure the whole of life on earth is pulsing. If you’re going to play God, then act in the power and majesty of God all the way.
The problem with this is we simply cannot. We do not understand that the baby in our womb that may encumber our lives with challenges and trials may be a part of a bigger picture we can’t see yet. That baby may be the man or woman who becomes the surgeon or the teacher or the foster mom or the physicist or the gardener or the cook that changes someone else’s life, or a group of people’s destiny. We’re not God. We don’t know.
At the end of God’s discourse with Job, Job said, “Therefore I have declared that which I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.” When we determine whether a life should live or die according to our present feelings and life circumstances, we are acting in arrogance and ignorance and the cost is more than we can presently see.
My mother made a lifetime of poor choices and put herself and others in painful situations. But to say her children should have been killed rather than the pain and trials we have all endured, is to say our lives were meaningless and worthless. Is that your place to say? Was it her place to say?
It may very well be time our nation braced itself and got real with our idolatry and human sacrifices.
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E-Mail Ms. Smallback: M.Smallback@cox.net