Saturday, March 17, 2012

Valuing Life

Over the past year I have shared frequently about my dear friend, Susanna,
and her family's calling to adopt Katerina from an orphanage in Bulgaria.
We have seen, heard and learned about the differences when people choose to 
value life or disregard it.
Check out the differences on the 
sidebar of a devalued Katerina and then really look at the joy in the eyes of 
a loved, respected and highly valued child.
There are many, many photos of a changing and thriving Katerina throughout
the posts here.  Also to be found are photos of children still waiting 
to find the joy of being in a loving home.
To be treasured.
In a culture such as ours the tradition has been to value life.
To recognize all life as God given and to treat all with dignity and respect.
I have to say that with the advent of abortion and a leaning toward
premature deaths for the ill and elderly we have crossed to 
 a very dangerous path in which we make
a judgement of which lives have value even here, in our own country.

We have heard, within our own borders, 
that there is a cure for Down Syndrome....
Not my words!

This week some dear friends of ours have experienced a gut wrenching event.
They were expecting their sixth baby.
At B's 18th week check up it was discovered that the baby had died in 
her womb.  She called J and told him and they have been processing their loss
ever since.  B went through the labor and delivery process knowing that
she was going to deliver a stillborn child.
The doctor offered her a faster, more clinical way at another facility.
What he offered was not available at their hospital.
They declined.
Choosing, instead, to dedicate the time and effort to 
delivering this baby in as natural and least destructive way as possible.

Today, we will gather at a church cemetery. 
We will bring the beginning of healing to a family who 
lost something of much worth to them.
To all of them.
To all of us.
I called their house this week and their oldest son, 
still a child himself, asked me if I knew that "our baby died"?
Their young daughter has treasured a memory box 
given to them by the hospital.
She, too, was looking forward to the safe delivery of 
a precious brother or sister.  
Honestly, the boys were hoping to even up the family a
bit...they have three sisters and another brother would
have made it three and three.

The Psalmist made it very clear that God knows each and 
every human being before they are even conceived.
He sets our DNA in place and causes life to happen.

Psalm 139 (NIV)
  For you created my inmost being;
   you knit me together in my mother’s womb. 
 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
   your works are wonderful,
   I know that full well.
 My frame was not hidden from you
   when I was made in the secret place,
   when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
   all the days ordained for me were written in your book
   before one of them came to be.
 How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God!
   How vast is the sum of them! 

Because of this I must value life.
Whether that life happens to be in its mother's womb
or a child that some would say has no value due to mental or 
physical conditions.

Once we begin judging that this one or that one shouldn't 
live because of one reason or another it is only a matter of time
before our imperfections are cause for question as to our value.
I don't want someone in my final days deciding that my quality of life is 
not worth the effort of allowing me life.
Only God has the right to make that choice.
I'm not advocating unnatural methods of keeping us alive 
at all costs...
but am strongly opposed to any method of premature ending of life.

Whew!  This is deep for a Saturday....
but it is on my heart.
Thanks for reading.


ZudaGay said...

Well said! Lifting up this precious family in their time of loss and mourning.

Vee said...

And I could not agree with you more. What your friends decided is very special and meaningful. I pray that the healing has already begun and that it will continue as your church family supports them. What a precious little son to wonder if you had heard.

Elena said...

My heart goes out to your friends in their loss. I loved seeing the pictures of Katie. What a great blessing and encouragement to see her improvement. She is a beautiful child!

Gayla said...

I am so sorry this sadness happens to loving parents. You are always a good friend with love and Christ in your heart and words. What a sad time. Hugs from Missouri...