I love you. God loves you.
You feel judged right now, during this flurry about abortion. I get it. Completely. When the world is up in arms about something, and you see it in your past, it hurts. It stings like lemon juice in a paper cut. And naturally so. I'm sure all the big game trophy hunters feel judged right now too.
You are not being judged. You are not being judged by me, for sure, but are you are also not being judged by the larger pro-life movement. This movement, and this moment, is not about judging you.
It feels that way, for sure. And I'm not trying to take that away from you, but I want you to grant the benefit of the doubt here and trust that I'm genuine when I say that for the vast majority of "us", you are not being judged.
This is what is being judged: The practice and practitioners of abortion. Is it rare? (No). Is it legal (Apparently not, even with our embracing of it through our laws; even they are too stringent to be followed). Is it safe (for whom?). And, yes, is it moral? (No. Value attaches to human life at its beginning.)
I sin most every day. So does everyone around us. God is not pleased with that sin. I am not pleased with it in myself, my children, or anyone I know. And likely, neither are you.
I am puffed up with pride, I am unkind to my husband, I am impatient with my children, I am uncharitable to a myriad of folks, I fall into gossip, I am a glutton, I am lazy. And if I list all my past and "bigger" sins, well, it wouldn't be ladylike. But, if you want to have coffee and believe I am a real-live sinner, I'll be glad to give you a clear picture.
But, in the end, I am forgiven. And I am better than I was. And so can you be. As soon as it is asked, forgiveness is granted. This is the gospel, friends. Jesus Christ came to die for sinners, and through Him the Father forgives all. And abortion is no different. It is not a good thing. It is a baby in there, a fact admitted by even the most callous of the Planned Parenthood doctors. "It's another boy," one practitioner said in the most recent of videos released this morning. And killing babies is bad. But it is far from unforgivable. All is forgivable. Go, find Jesus, and be free and forgiven.
But, please hear me. I am not angry at you for having an abortion. I have been in a situation to contemplate it myself, and I understand the darkness and fear that puts you in that position. I have loved and respected many women who have had abortions. I am not angry at you. And you need not confess to me.
I am, however, angry at the folks who have lied to many women and told them that this was good. I am angry that they are tearing apart little people and selling their pieces and parts. I am angry that our lawmakers are chickendung and won't deal with this. I am angry at myself for not being outspoken. I am angry at people in the prolife camp for at times acting ridiculous and sullying the name of the position. I am angry at the Church and many myriad of institutions for failing to support women, for employing shame and judgment and apathy, rather than justice and mercy and grace and support. I am angry at men for failing to be fathers. So, if you hear anger from me, know where it is directed.
It is red-hot anger at times. But, I am not angry at you. I promise.
Anne Lamott, who has a way with words, tweeted today that she stands with women, with the born, with Planned Parenthood.
Well, Anne and I have a few things in common, though I can't get my hair to do quite like that and I'll never be that cool and she keeps misspelling her first name. But, she's got it wrong here. Love is not avoidance of truth; and, the gospel requirements of mercy and justice don't begin with children who are wanted or who are twenty-nine weeks gestation or who have taken their first breath. The gospel requirements of justice and mercy extend to all those created imago dei, and that means the poor, the orphan, and the person who is so small he is still living inside someone else's body.
I stand with women. I stand with the born. I stand with the unborn. I stand with those who have left the life of abortion-provider. I stand with you.
I do not stand with Planned Parenthood, and neither should you, friend. A mistake doesn't forever tie you to a monster. A brief moment of culpability does not shackle you for life. There is not scarlet letter upon your chest. And if you feel as though there is, come visit me. I'll be glad to make a batch of something ice cold and tell you about how wonderful it is to burn that red A in the comfort of a Savior's redemption.
It's over. Be free. Rest. And, above all, be thankful.
all my love,