Isn’t It Ironic?

I just put another bumper sticker on my car that might take me over the cliff where I’ll secretly be called a Jesus Freak. If you knew how my insides have actually felt about this idea, it would really shock you that I even consider it.  I don’t like to draw attention to myself in a religious way in that I never, ever, ever want to be pushy about religion, faith, etc. I don’t bring the fire and brimstone attitude or try to scare people into believing in God. Eek. However, my bumper sticker decisions are a big deal in my little life. I put great thought into them and have had one of them personalized to make my point. Even though I shy away from being pushy about my stances, once I do feel deeply about something, I want to confidently express it and sometimes I wonder if something as simple as a bumper sticker could get brains stewing as they spend so much time in the car.  P.S. I only have 3 total; not like pieces of flair at Chotchkie’s (see clip for Office Space reference). 

Now to my point. My most recent sticker, as seen here, is a picture of a little sea turtle and when you look closer, you see that it’s holding a sign that says, “Save the Baby Humans”. A friend of mine from church had it on her car and after seeing it, I had a huge “aha!” moment and then kept thinking on this idea for the last month or so. It is yet a new way that I see the issue of abortion and how it’s distorted in our society. It’s similar to the fact that millions of dollars were probably pulled out of North Carolina over the transgender bathroom bill (I am still stewing on that topic as I try to figure out where I stand) whilst millions more US federal dollars keep flowing into foreign countries that execute people with any alternative lifestyle. Another day, another blog…

If you’re from Bradenton or I imagine any other beach community, you know about the potentially over-zealous sea turtle patrol. They wake up before dawn to stake out sea turtle nests along the shore. In turtle season, they are clearly marked with stakes and bright orange surveyor’s tape. You don’t mess with them unless you want major trouble. We’re not allowed to have any lights at night shining towards the gulf. It’s a big dad gum deal. As a young girl, I myself wanted to be a marine biologist (Let’s be honest and say that 8 out of 10 children wanted to have the same profession or something else related to animals) and used to read about sea turtles, so I can understand the passion that many have. BUT, what is going on with this picture when we have people fighting for the women’s right to end a HUMAN life, yet don’t connect that to the fight to passionately protect a sea turtle’s precious life? They are cute, for real. They need to travel and have more turtle babies like in Finding Nemo, but why are we not, as a society, thinking in similar terms when it comes to human children? 

This post was triggered by similar thoughts from one of my favorite fiction authors, Francine Rivers. Although I may not agree with every nuance of her tone in this blog (i.e. when she questions Planned Parenthood’s motives in providing women’s health, because I do believe they bring a lot of good), it hits the same nerve thats been pressing on me since stumbling onto this sea turtle idea. In her writing, she references the same newspaper printing two different articles; one about a new abortion clinic opening and another about the great lengths taken to care for a newly discovered panda’s fetus at the local zoo. Isn’t it ironic? Don’t ya think? 

Abortion, abortion, abortion!

Abortion, abortion, abortion! There. I said it. I’m fascinated that this word, which my own vocabulary has been devoid of for many years (since it’s a hot topic), is now out and about and even posted on my Facebook page. I would have never thought I’d get the guts to publicly voice my changing opinion on the matter. But I have. I actually felt I had no choice. While growing up and becoming an adult, I would call myself pro-choice. I agreed with my mother, who has been very active and supportive of Planned Parenthood, that it was up to the individual woman what they do with their body. I didn’t think much further on it. In fact, I did not feel any of the emotional tugs when friends or others would use phrases like, “killing babies” or would support their local pregnancy centers. I was never against those programs because they did great things and loved young women going through difficult times, but I was not in support of them. To be quite honest, I did not want to be tied in with stereotypical “ultra-conservative Baptists” with their pro-life platform.

As I worked my way through my late twenties and early thirties, my faith in God formed and took root (not without great struggle as I crawled my way through hardship as noted on previous posts). I also gave birth to my son and began hearing more from Psalm 139. I never shifted to pro-life, but stayed neutral and what I thought was “open-minded”. However, during the summer of 2014, I had a personal event that altered my perspective of what goes on inside a woman’s pregnancy.  I made a trip to the ER while 17 weeks pregnant with complications. I remember being alone in the middle of the night and whispering to the little baby in my belly; hoping and praying for everything to be ok and dreading the idea of having to see my baby if I were to miscarry. I knew that it looked like a tiny growing human in my body and the idea of seeing it lifeless would have been overwhelming. Fast forward to 8 months ago when I gave birth to that sweet little girl that has brightened our life. I now reflect back to that night in the ER and realize that it was her in there; moving and growing. I had already given birth to my son 7 years ago, but this experience shed a new light on it for me.

Then the videos started coming out on Planned Parenthood. My first thought when I saw the headline was that it was probably an over-zealous pro-life group trying to smash abortion supporters. Then I watched. My stomach tightened and my heart fell because all I could think about was my little baby girl in my belly last summer. I couldn’t even watch the whole first video. I watched some of the videos to follow and heard myself saying, “What are we doing!?!” I want to cry out thinking about what is actually happening during an abortion. And I never saw it like that! How many people have been blind to the reality of what really happens? Yes, the selling of body parts seems a bit alarming and needs investigation, but there is more from this exposure that has much greater value and that is the light that has been turned on that has people (like me!) talking about abortion in a different way. Teenager? In college and don’t want to mess up life plans? Already have a couple kids and don’t want anymore or can’t afford it? No longer can we see it as an easy way out if it just doesn’t fit into our lifestyle. Blind to its realities, we act as though it’s no big deal!

You may be one that can relate to my previous view of abortion: “should be up to the woman”, “it’s not even a real baby”, etc. You may have been a bit grossed out by the first video, but have avoided the remaining videos and chalked it up as a distorted video by an crazy group of right-wingers. No matter what comes of the investigation on PP and regardless of whether they have been illegally selling the body parts, we have no choice but to see abortion as what it is: ripping up, sucking out, and destroying a tiny human life. Those are not eye-rolling, dramatic verbs I just used; they are fact. I just never knew it before and now I have no excuse. I will now pray for others to see it; that the blinders will also fall from their eyes and that this will cease to be common practice. I will also pray for the women (some of whom I know and could have easily been me, too) that have had abortions because now their own hearts may be feeling the heavy burden of that choice in a whole new way. If we have put our trust in Him, God forgives us, loves us, and has compassion on us. How do you play a part on this issue? What can you think, pray, or do?