OK, so I always voted for pro-life candidates. That was what it meant to be pro-life, right? That was enough, right?
Then about 8 years ago I started going to the Walk For Life event locally here that supported our local pregnancy center. Then a few years ago we began to regularly contribute to that pregnancy center. Then in 2011 we attended the Whatcom County Pregnancy Clinic's annual dinner. It was a wonderful event where I got to learn more about what they do to serve the women of our county. Last year, we heard about a town (not our town), where the pregnancy clinic got serious about defending the life of the unborn, and used media to get the word out that abortion was not the only choice for women facing a crisis pregnancy. You know what happened? Nearly all the abortion facilities in that county closed - they were no longer needed. Supporting your local crisis pregnancy center/clinic is the best way to stop abortion. Governmental laws come and go, but the law of supply and demand will always win. If there is a demand for abortion, abortionists will be in business to supply that service. For them, it's all about the money. So please, support your local pregnancy clinic and reduce/eliminate the demand for abortion in your community. We support our clinic on a monthly basis, as well as attending their events - it's not that hard,and even $5 a month can help pay for a few pregnancy tests!
Also, did you know that some forms of chemical birth control allow for fertilization of the egg, but create a hostile environment in the womb, preventing implantation? If you, like me, believe that life begins at fertilization (egg + sperm), then using these types of birth control should be unacceptable. We need to get the word out about this!
So I'm good right? I fight the good fight against abortion, right? I don't use birth control that can cause abortions. I can now be content with my stance of being pro-life, right?
Girl, born Feb 2009
Down syndrome,Postoperative CHD
(VSD after repair)
Sweet little Tina!
|Aubrey - Girl, born Aug. 1999|
Diagnoses: arthrogryposis; mental delay
But here is where this blog post came from. God has sent his Hounds after me. Relentlessly bringing to mind this concept of pro-life in action. Over and over again these thoughts run through my brain. Can we say we are pro-life, and yet do nothing to help these little ones? Can we say we are pro-life and yet turn away when we see a child or adult with a disability? Can we say we are pro-life and yet stop reading about these lost children because it's too hard to read? God keeps asking me to think about what it would be like to be that person. Think with me about this. These children did nothing and yet they were born with some defect that is unacceptable in their culture, or their medical care is too expensive for their family to deal with. So, on top of dealing with health issues, they have no one. Their hospital stays for surgeries or illnesses do not include being rocked by their mommy or visits from siblings or new toys to play with. Their days are not spent in colorful rooms or in therapies to help them overcome their disabilities. They lay in cribs in stark rooms with no toys, pillow, or even blankets. Some of them only get one bottle a day, and many of them only get their gigantic diapers changed once a day. Many of them are drugged continuously to keep them docile and quiet. Newborn babies are left in a "crying room" until they learn that their needs will not be met, that they should be quiet and just wait for their scheduled bottles and diaper changes.
I KNOW! You don't want to read that. I didn't want to read that. I don't want to picture those babies crying without consolation. So many times I have had to turn away or my heart would crumble. Sometimes I felt like I might even be physically sick when I read about the situation these children were in.
I felt so useless.
But there was more - the stories coming out of these orphanage sound like something from Nazi Germany in WWII. Sometimes I would find myself shutting down - I just couldn't take anymore. But then later, God would show me more. I would read about these children being transferred to adult mental institutions and that 90% of those die in the first year.
And then I SAW IT HAPPEN!
Children who had adoptive families, whose blogs I had read, were getting word that their child, in adult mental institutions at the ripe old age of 4, 6, 8 were dead. They had become that statistic. I had seen their faces, I had seen the love that these families had to their children, and yet they died before ever knowing that love. Oh, Lord God, this is killing me - I just checked the memorial page of Reece's Rainbow and I KNOW the first three shown there - Sasha, Stacy and Declan. Each of them precious, each of them being adopted, yet leaving this life never knowing the love of a family. It is still too hard for me. Please, God, preserve Priscilla until we can come and ransom her!
I still feel so useless.
BUT there's more.
It's not just the "defective" that are left to rot in orphanages over there. There are children in orphanages that have no physical, mental or developmental delays. They end up in orphanages for many reasons - alcoholism, poverty, child abuse, death of their parents etc. But once a child is no longer a baby, they become practically un-adoptable. And the longer they live in an orphanage the more damaged they become. But they are not ir-repairable. You might think, "They'll be OK. When they grow up they'll get out of the orphanage and go on to lead normal lives."
When these children "age out" of the orphanage, they are turned out of the orphanage the day they turn 16, with about $50 in their pocket and the clothes on their back. Most of them have had NO school. They are not skilled in any type of work. Over 10% of them commit suicide by the time they turn 18. Over 60% of the girls end up in the sex trade and over 70% of the boys become hardened criminals. But this doesn't have to happen.
At least,if you think as I did, children in the USA are better cared for. That is true in many cases, but so many children experience the hardships of the foster care system their entire life. I read recently that 70% of the prison population today are people that grew up in the foster care system. Granted, the foster care system has improved a lot, but foster care will always lack the permanence that only an adoptive family can give to an orphan. Do an internet search for US orphans, or check out Rainbow Kids or Adopt US Kids to see the children available for adoption right here in our country!
OK, so the "system" is broken beyond repair, at least it seems this way. What can be done?
How can adopting one child make any difference when there are thousands in those places.
Well, for starters, adopting one child will change that child's world.
We can't all pick up and move to a foreign country to lobby for change.
Not everyone is called to adopt either. God doesn't work that way. God calls each of His children in different ways.
But I think everyone should consider what they can do. What God is asking them to do. God's word shows us over and over again that He cares what happens to orphans. Click on that link and you will read God's heart towards orphans and fatherless children.
There are so many ways that we can help.
|SERENITY and ANITA |
for the Joss family — WA
Some take a little more work - commit to being an advocate for an orphan or adoptive family. Donate some of your hard earned money to help these adoptions. Create items that you can donate to auctions that benefit these adoptive families and orphans.
You will be blessed as you see God work in these lives. I have!
Have you even thought about helping a family who does foster care, of a family who has adopted a child out of the foster care system? I hadn't even thought about it until this week.
Maybe God is calling you to adopt, or maybe just asking you to consider it. Please do not ignore that still small voice.
Remember, adoption is not about you and it's not about me. It's not about getting that child you wanted. The boy you never had. The girl you wanted when you only got boys.
I always thought that adoption was for couples who had trouble having children of their own. But now I see it so differently.
Adoption is about the children.
I am not adopting because I want another baby. That may or may not be obvious ;) I am not adopting because I want a girl, or I want a boy. I am not adopting because I need to do this to feel good about myself. I'm not even doing this so others will think more highly of me.
I am doing this because God has called us to adopt Priscilla.
I am doing this to expose these acts of Satan on the least of these, so that God's people will stand up against the face of evil and DO SOMETHING for these children whom God loves.
Remember that Sunday School song - "Jesus love the little children, all the children of the world...'? It is true. He loves them. He wants to see every orphan experience the love of a family.
Last Sunday, our pastor preached about the gift of salvation. All that Christ did for us. He died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins so that we could be made righteous. He was preaching from I Corinthians 15. His sermon ended with this thought - Since Christ has done so much for us, how then shall we live? He challenged us that when we follow God's leading, we might be/will be required to do something that requires getting out of our comfort zone. He listed losing sleep, giving up our comfort zone, using our free time, spending money (I think he said "all your money), being criticized and more. He said that it might hurt, and then reminded us that it hurt when Jesus died for us, A LOT. Today we are not usually called to die a horrendous death for our faith, but are we willing to follow God's call when it means sacrificing something? I took this to heart and applied it to our adoption.
You know, adoption has taken on a whole new look to me. No longer do I see adoption as an option for couples struggling with fertility (although there is nothing wrong with this), but I see adoption as a calling. I see it as an earthly representation of what our Heavenly Father has done for us. We did not know Him. We did absolutely nothing to deserve His love. He sacrificed everything to make us His child. He loved us before we even knew He existed. He loved us even when we were broken, defective, unlovable. By following God's call to adopt Priscilla, I see His love working in us. I can see His love for us in a small way in our love for Priscilla.
God says in His word that Children Are A Blessing. He doesn't say that biological children are a blessing. He doesn't say that perfect children are a blessing. He says ALL CHILDREN are a blessing.
What is God calling you to do to aid orphans? What blessing is He calling you to sacrifice for?
How Pro-Life are you?
A video I found on Rainbow Kids: