This week we learned a sitting Supreme Court Justice (Kennedy) will be retiring and stepping down from the Judicial Branch in the United States. Within minutes of the news, reactions were popping up on every major media site I have. Reactions were coming in from as far away as Asia, and vitriol was being spewed in both directions over the potential new Justice and what this person will be like. One half was groaning over the loss of a decided case (Roe v. Wade) and what this would mean to popularized stance of the hypocrisy of life and how selfishly they would be affected. The other side high-fiving the chance to right a perceived wrong, the death of millions, yes millions, of unborn children. So, I’m sure you can guess where my stance is on this, but not perhaps at my disdain for both sides. A law, as powerful as it is, isn’t the measure by which a society functions. Instead the morals and ethics by which we govern ourselves, creating an almost unnecessary need to be dictated in law, permeates society’s every fiber. This isn’t what is happening. Our society, hangs on the most delicate balance of majority in every situation, especially on those topics which there should never be a question. Currently, everyone’s thoughts are on the palpability of seeing a legal injustice (as perceived) righted and justice being served. Though, this brings about another question. What are we going to do about all the people who utilized abortions for contraceptive methods? Have we taught them anything? Are we going to instill more familial values in our world, so instead of ubiquitous sexual encounters, we see a development of true loving relationships? By my measure, this is why I write this blog, because there is real potential to see the law of the land mirror the values and morals we have to uphold the sanctity of life, but the hypocrisy will still be brimming under the surface.
When I was a teenager and I was talking with my friends, we all couldn’t wait till our first sexual experience. We objectified the very act of something, which so beautiful in its own right, was degraded into an object, an activity to display prowess or desire. We were typical, by all societal standards, and in our attempt to attain an average acceptance of society at large, we disordered something which is the very cornerstone of life. The very action and all emotion which, with God’s Graces, creates a beautiful life. Allowed to let nature progress (save any outlier such as medical emergencies etc.), we see a baby grow and be born into this life. As the baby is born, there are two parents, who’ve set aside their own personal selfish pursuits, and decided to raise this child. In their decision to raise this child, they do so in a loving home, because there is no longer any place for egotism, instead sacrifice is the measure of the day. Sacrifice in time and effort to teach the rights and wrongs of life, a desire to have this child see the light of Christ, and a measure of self-reliance which gives the child a chance to live this life in a world looking for destruction. Never, in my wildest dreams, did I envision destroying life so I could maintain a carefree lifestyle, one which would have been prevented if I was required to raise a child. This is where we are at, and as a matter of perverted thought, we are bombarded by those who wish to make a case for their own bodies as a plight of decision rather than life. Let me be clear, if a man and a woman have sex, and a pregnancy occurs, the natural order is such that a baby will be born in approximately nine months. To do anything to stop this pregnancy by unnatural means (e.g. abortion, murder of the mother), constitutes a disorder of the Will of God. A destruction of life, is an egregious act, which no society should stand for or allow on the context of decision alone.
Ok, so where am I going with this? I’m simply stating, a society which holds life as a precious gift, a society which gives recognition to natural event, should never permit the destruction of said life. From another perspective, the conceived child never asked to be conceived. If the prospective parents engage in ill-timed sexual activities, and are faced with a consequence of life, then it is up to society to hold them to this decision, not give them a chance to become worse people. “It takes a village” is a true contextual observation of our lives as they are, not as we would like them to be. A strength is needed, to correct the wrongs, the moral misgivings people have, a strength to stand in opposition to everything which seems to be going against us. I have learned, over the years, to find comfort in God, even though I find discomfort in the opposition I bring to a room of unlike minded individuals. Not to create disquiet, but to present an objective truth. This is to say, all life is valid, beautiful, and of the love of God, to diminish it or destroy it is always unacceptable. The child which is created by good, bad, or indifferent decisions, should not be punished. Instead, the growth of the adults creating the child is what is as important as the raising of this beautiful representation for life.
The real substance of what I’m getting at is what will change if the law changes, when an overwhelming number of people don’t seem to care about a law, except for the fact they don’t want to be incarcerated. The spirit behind why a law exists should transcend the population and create a redundant measure of justice to confirm our reality. As I see it, it begins in the home, we are challenged to teach the next generation of kids and even create a learned paradigm ourselves pertaining to the sanctity of all life. We can’t be hypocrites about life either, if life is precious, then we must hold it to be so. What I mean is, we must push to have all corners of our culture embrace life, old and new, infirm and unhealthy. We can no longer sit idly by, and allow people who have no self-professed reason to honor life, God, or humanity make our decisions for us. Standing up in defiance, not fighting, not running, but defiant opposition to those who diminish life is paramount to our survival.
I’m sure I could look up statistics and quote very real numbers as to the veracity of life, but in the end if anyone is like me, there should be something innate within all of us, where we see the natural progression and growth of an individual. The progressive potential of someone who as they enter life possess the potential to do wonderful things, and by the Grace of God, become a reflective light to all of us. The key here is a doggedness which pursues the truth over and again and never rests until we rest in the presence of God. Unfortunately, before abortion was made legal, illegal abortions were being performed, and in the process both baby and mother would sometimes perish. The procedures were awful, and the “doctor” would use various means to destroy the life in her womb. The real question was why was a woman willing to go through this to destroy a life and potentially put hers at risk? Society, at this time society was unforgiving for women who chose to have sex outside of marriage and then become pregnant and produce “bastard children” as a result. They would rather go through the risk of death than to face the humiliation, they most assuredly we see, if they kept the child. The humiliation was from all facets of society, church, home, work, and strangers. Everyone had an opinion and those opinions seemed devoid of compassion, giving rise to alternative routes of dissemination in result. The problem became multifaceted, families failing to speak about truths, society unwilling to be compassionate, people unwilling to face discipline of their own lives as well as the discipline which results from decision making. A ship going down in the middle of a storm and no one was willing to do what was needed, except those willing to look at the light of Christ as a beacon for hope. Ok, so the law is passed. Society can relax right? Now, men and women can have sex, protected or not, and worst case scenario, if the woman gets pregnant she can terminate the pregnancy and it’s all legal. The best part is, because it is the law, it must be right? I don’t think this is a fantastical way of looking at the issue, many people believe the law is an extension of moral correctness and apply it as such, and in the ever-shifting sands of the law, they rely on the very words of the law to apply a life’s compass to their wandering. Some of those who opposed the law, which should be every Christian ever, approached a tactic of shame and absolutism, for the ones who decided as a means of contraceptive measures to abort their pregnancy, and take a very unchristian approach. This was wrong!
So, where are we now? As a father I can tell you this, I love my daughters, and I don’t want them to ever feel as if they should be shamed by their actions, regarding any of this. Thankfully they have not done this, and it is my goal to teach them as long as I have breath in me, about the utter sanctity of life. This is to say, if they choose to walk the wrong path, it is up to me, through compassion and the Love of Christ to bring them back to the light. This isn’t done with force and requires the patience of time to pray and show them the truth. At the end of the day, bringing them back is a matter of their choice and acceptance of truth, even if they are my kids and I love them beyond measure, they must make their own decisions and live with those decisions, like we all must do. However, a measure of compassion on all of our parts is needed. Jesus, accepted those who sinned and dined with them as a physical way of showing how precious they were in the eyes of God. Which brings me to my final point, God made each and every one of us, we are beloved in the His eyes, and as such, it must be understood, if even I am beloved, isn’t also the unwanted child of two people who conceived because of their pursuit of pleasure?
All children are wanted, needed, and loved. God fashioned each and every one of us as a testament to love, to say, look at your ever-changing curves and wrinkles, look at your hair or lack thereof, look at what you’ve learned and the impact of your decision on the lives of those closest to you and then think what would this be like if you’d been aborted. Just like any good argument, we must take the extreme and the reality is, some of the greatest impacts on our culture and societies have come from people who were originally cast off from society. Society even wished them dead or to go away as though they were dead, in order to remove them from the conscious reminder, but they didn’t and with enough time and love, and the Graces of God outpoured, they became a radiant reflection of the Love of God. St. Francis of Assisi is the best example. A wealthy son of a merchant, and no stranger to sin, renounced his sinful ways and embraced a lifestyle of humility and degradation. He became an outcast, so much so, his father renounced him as a son, and he was dead to him. Though through the Love of God, he began to win over hearts and minds, and where people once wished him dead, they fervently celebrated his life unto his death by following the path he followed in Christ. His life, although seemingly unworthy, created a fervent desire to approach God with love which hasn’t stopped since it began.
We must have the wisdom to look past what we see now, and know what is possible in the future as we approach a compassion for life and a desire to see all life flourish. Babies must be allowed to grow to birth and be loved. Those children must be taught to adulthood, to create a reverent and loving society. Those adults must be compassionate enough to embrace the change which will come, and stoic enough to resist the temptations of man. When life fades for all of us, we must accept it with a joy of God’s Will rather than an end to an unfinished life. My wife and I have had the conversation over the years about conceptualizing death, and why it is such a hard concept for us to grasp. Here is my answer, and I hope it can give some people some solace. I believe in God, completely, and in doing so, I know this life on earth is a matter of a means to the end, the end being of course Life in Christ. To be embraced by God, as both Heaven and Earth are once again joined in balance. I know what we endure here in this life is a matter of course for the greater glory, and in a truer understanding of time and place, become a blink of an eye on a scale of eternity. As I understand all of this, I am challenged to think of those I’ve loved and lost to this temporal existence, to know the joy I will feel when I see them once again. Though we must feel the pangs of sorrow if we are truly to understand the joy of life, and this cannot be taken for granted. Our every action must be accounted for, repented of, and compassionately understood. If there is anyone you know, who has confided in you a decision to abort their child, pray for them, bless them for better decisions going forward, but above all else stand for what is right (life) and show them compassion beyond measure. Don’t accept sin, but be willing to embrace the sinner. I am a sinner, I know this for sure, and I am willing to embrace all because I know we are all looking for the light of love and compassion in our lives. Be the light for someone who is desperately searching! There are many alternatives to abortion, please pursue them and find a path to life. For all the fathers, and husbands out there, stand your ground, don’t ever let someone make the argument of choice, there is only one choice and life is it, anything less is an abomination to the Will of God. May God bless you and your family!!!
Catechism of Catholic Church:
God is good, all the time, and all the time, God is good!!!