Yesterday, after tidying up the kitchen, I went outside to turn off a sprinkler in the back garden. I was saddened to discover a dragonfly I had spotted the day before was now dead. Dragonflies are a gardener’s friend since they can devour a lot of insects. They’re entertaining to watch as they dart to and fro in pursuit of prey. When it was alive I photographed it on a fern leaf it had flown to after I had nudged it gently away from the main traffic area. I didn’t want it to get stepped on.
Surprised by my level of grief over a simple insect, I pondered over the value of that little life. Next my thoughts turned to other little lives that are rarely mentioned in the media. I hear about sled dogs who were potential victims of abuse, or starving horses, and even puppy mills. The amount of public outcry these instances of suspected animal cruelty foster, makes me nervous to even own a pet. Yet, if I were to be nine months pregnant I could legally have a partial birth abortion done and not many would even bat an eye. Did you just read what I wrote?
There is a short-list of seven things in Proverbs 6:17 that the Lord hates, and one of them is “hands that shed innocent blood”. When I think of “who” in this particular scenario, I’m thinking of the abortionists. I don’t hate them, but I hate what they are doing for money. When I have been newly pregnant I feel very vulnerable. It’s hard to think positive when you’re experiencing nausea and sleeplessness. My heart goes out to women experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. But my heart aches and grieves for all those innocent lives that have been literally torn apart.
Should I hire a hit man to remove a neighbor who is threatening to invade my privacy by cutting off branches from my hedge? Privacy is really important to me. It adds to my quality of life. Is my life of more value than the person next door? Is an unborn child’s life of less value than its mothers? Oh, I wish some of the animal rights activists would also join the cause of the unborn humans. I wonder how many unborn children have been shed today? It’s about location, location, location. If you’re outside the womb you’re safe. But if you’re inside it, there are some hands that can make money at your expense.
An unborn child would be better off to be a beached whale than to be in a womb where no newspapers will feature him/her on the front page; no rich organizations will fund an amazing rescue; and no save the baby t-shirts will feature the unborn’s smiling face. Or perhaps an unborn child should wish to be a baby seal? Then it would have rich celebrities on its side. They would help make cute posters everyone would be willing to post on Facebook.
Sorry, baby, you have not come a long way. But the animals have.
My firstborn and I attended a play group in our community when he was a preschooler. There we met another older mom, like me, and her preschooler. New moms always manage to get around to sharing their birth story. Once, as we visited at her beach front home, she told me hers. She had a very difficult pregnancy that was threatening both her life and her babies. With tears in her eyes she shared how the doctor strongly suggested an abortion as they doubted her baby would be normal. I turned my eyes from her tear filled ones to gaze down at our two beautiful children delightfully observing tiny crabs scurrying about as they lifted rocks on the beach. Her daughter was beyond normal. She was the perfect blend of two loving parents with robust health and blond curly hair surrounding a perfect face featuring blue eyes that reflected the ocean before us. A shiver ran down my spine in spite of the sunshine.
Location, location, location.
I made sure my womb was safe. When prenatal testing was offered to me, since I was an older mom, I said no thank you, no thank you, no thank you.
So what can we do? The next time we donate to the SPCA or to the cancer campaign, perhaps we could donate to a local pregnancy care center too. It might balance things out a bit. Maybe one day we can say, “You’ve come a long way, baby”, and it will be true.
Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins. James 4:17
Would you let your child stomp on a dragonfly resting on your sidewalk? Why not? Because you value life.