Posted in Politics, Reflection

2 Reasons Why Christians Should Be Appalled by the New Alabama “Heartbeat Bill”

Before you get your holy knickers in a twist, let me start by affirming that I AM PRO-LIFE. I am VERY pro-life. I’m pro-life to the point that I chose to ignore medical advice to carry my baby to term even though I was told that it would probably result in my own death. I have spent the past 20 years being a voice for the unborn and sharing my story. Being pro-life is the reason I abhor these “heartbeat abortion bills” and you should, too.

Reason #1: The Exceptions Clause


This bill would make abortion and attempted abortion felony offenses except in cases where abortion is necessary in order to prevent a serious health risk to the unborn child’s mother.”

The Alabama Human Life Protection Act

As a pro-life advocate, I love and fully support the idea of a ban on one of America’s greatest tragedies: abortion-on-demand. Sadly, the Alabama Human Life Protection Act (and many like it elsewhere) is not one. The so-called “heartbeat bill” bans all abortions after a heartbeat can be detected, for any reason except to prevent a serious issue with the mother’s health or if the unborn child would be stillborn or die after childbirth.

Again, as a Christian who is pro-life, this sounds quite reasonable. I, personally, found myself facing the probability of death when I was pregnant with my first child and I chose not to abort my baby but to trust God with our lives, instead. But I can’t expect everyone to make that same decision. In fact, there are many strong Christians that would struggle with that decision. How could we, as Christians, possibly expect the world to rely on a faith that they do not have.

Sadly, what is NOT mentioned in this bill is an exemption for cases of sexual assault.

According to this bill, if a 10 year old child is raped by her father and becomes pregnant, that little girl would be forced to carry that baby to term and then watch it be taken from her because a 10 year old child cannot raise a baby. That may seem like an unlikely scenario but it happens and it’s heartless.

In cases of rape or incest, this Alabama law is telling women that their life is less valuable than that of their unborn child. Is that really the message we want to portray as conservative Christians?

When situations get complex and turned around in my mind, I ask myself the simple question that much of the world balks at: What Would Jesus Do?

If Jesus encountered a woman who had been raped, what would He do? More than likely, He would bring healing to her heart and life so that she would decide to keep her child and trust in Him. That should always be our ultimate goal, right? To bring the world to a saving relationship with God. But what if Jesus was put in charge of making a law about abortion? What if He couldn’t personally minister to each woman? Would He really ban it without exception? Would He really cause further pain to those who had been victimized?

Jesus made exceptions to the rules all the time. In fact, in Matthew 23:23, He called the Pharisees a bunch of hypocrites because they were so focused on tithing but ignored the “weightier matters of the law, justice, mercy, and faith”. I have to think that Jesus would have mercy on a girl who had been raped.

The Bible is full of examples of exceptions. God said that He hated divorce but then gave reasons that He would permit it. Jesus violated the Sabbath law by healing people. He commanded believers to be baptized but He told the thief on the cross beside Him that he would be with Him that very day in Paradise. Jesus came so that God’s love and mercy would replace the old law. I have to believe that He still wants His love and mercy to reign concerning women who have become victims of rape and incest.

The liberal left is crying out that this bill shows that Republicans don’t care about women. They’re proclaiming that Republican men only want to have control over women, their bodies, and their decisions. As a conservative Republican woman, I’m wondering if the left is right on this one.

Reason #2: The Wrong Goal

Not only does the Alabama Human Life Protection Act allow no room for exceptions for victims of rape and incest, but both the Alabama House and Senate rejected amendments to the bill brought by Democrats earlier this week that would include these exceptions. So much for reaching across the aisle and working together.

Politically, this bill may look like a huge win for Republicans but as Christians, it is an embarrassing act of merciless oppression.

Representative Terri Collins who sponsored the bill said that the bill was intended to challenge the Supreme Court’s decision in the infamous 1973 Roe v Wade case. Rep Collins believes that adding an exception for victims of sexual assault would “dilute” the argument that an unborn child is a person. Personally, I feel that not including that exception shows women that lawmakers in the great state of Alabama believe that an unborn child’s life is more important than a mother’s.

I pray for the day that Roe v Wade is finally overturned for God’s glory, but this is not the way to do it. This is not the battle we want to fight. This is not the goal.

gavel

We want a ban on abortion-on-demand. We want to establish that a person is a person from the moment of conception. We do not want to diminish the pain that victims of sexual assault experience. We do not want to get into the business of determining whose life has the most value. That is not up to us.

We want our fellow citizens of this great nation to love God and to value human life. We want people to join us as voices for the voiceless because God has touched their lives and impassioned them to join our cause. But Jesus never bullied anybody. He wanted people to follow Him out of love, not by force.

As Christians, our goal is to stand up for the rights of the unborn, not to take away the rights of women. Our goal is to teach our peers that life begins at conception, not to determine whose life is more valuable. Our goal is to do no harm, not to bring more pain to the victims. Our goal is to love, not control.

And until He returns or calls me home, that’s exactly what this pro-life, conservative, Christian woman is going to do.

EDIT TO ADD….

I’m going to throw in a bonus reason, here…

Reason #3: It’s Bad Business

I know next to nothing about politics and my use of logic may have no place in the political world, but humor me, if you will.

The liberals, the left, the pro-choice all want to keep Roe v Wade intact. They want to celebrate abortion and a woman’s right to choose one until the end of time. They look at the conservative, the right, the pro-life as oppressive, controlling monsters that are leading the war against women.

So, in response to that, we (the conservative pro-life Christians) write a bill than bans all abortions for any reason except the mother’s death? Really? Way to convince them that they’re right!

On one hand, we have politics. I may not know much about politics, but I know enough to know that it’s a world of give and take. It’s supposed to be about creating laws to govern the entire body of people, regardless of their beliefs or opinions or gender or status or religion or place of birth.

On the other hand, we have faith. We have the Bible. We have an absolute black and white Word from God that tells us that abortion is murder. There’s no gray area there. And as Christians, we should absolutely NEVER compromise our faith. We should NEVER compromise or water down the Word of God. We should always stand firm and declare Truth to a hurting world.

So when it comes to being a Christian in a political world, we have choices to make and it seems to me that we ought to be able to find a way to declare Truth without hurting people. As my pastor always says, “Lead with grace, land with truth.”

If we want to overturn Roe v Wade and be light to the world, we need to compromise our politics, not our faith.

If we want to sign an out-right ban on all abortions, it should come with extra funding for foster care and adoption services as well as counselling for the victims. We have to offer other solutions to the problem.

If we want to overturn Roe v Wade AND bring others to Christ, we need to stop fighting for abortion to be illegal in sexual assault cases and start setting up more Pregnancy Resource Centers to help women who find themselves victims of such heinous crimes.

If we want to show the world love instead of the things that they see (oppression, control, and hatred of women), then we need to show them that we’re logical, rational, and willing to work together.

As it stands now, the Alabama Human Life Protection Act doesn’t stand a chance. Sure, it was signed in Alabama but it will definitely be challenged and sent to the Supreme Court. It’ll be found to be unconstitutional in some way and it’ll be dead in the water. If not right away, soon. Then we, as pro-lifers have lost ground and lost respect as reasonable, logical people to work with.

Instead, it seems to be better business to accept the Democrats’ amendment to allow exceptions for rape and incest victims, which, by the way, is a very nominal percentage of abortions in any state. It would be a huge victory for pro-life conservatives and a tolerable alternative for pro-choice democrats. Rally the troops and raise the funds to provide counseling and options to those few who are victims of sexual assault and you’ve almost completely eradicated abortion in the state of Alabama without declaring war on women.

But like I said, maybe there’s just no room for logic in politics.

Posted in Bible Study, Cooking, Crafts, Friendship, Homeschool, Illness, Marriage, Motherhood, Politics, Prayer, Reflection, Uncategorized, Writing

The Blueprints Behind the Blog

Every well-built house started in the form of a definite purpose plus a definite plan in the nature of a set of blueprints.”

Napoleon Hill

When I look back over the path of my 40 years on this earth, it is hard for me to imagine that any kind of strategic planning ever occurred before I drew my first breath and plunged head-first into my awkward existence. Like many babies, I was a surprise, and the plan and purpose of my life have remained unclear ever since I arrived.

Sure, I was taught that ultimately my greatest aspiration should be to bring glory to God in all that I do but I have wondered for years exactly what that should look like. It’s like telling someone that their assignment is to build a beautiful house without telling them what kind of design might appeal most to the future occupants of the home.

A few months ago I found myself in an overwhelming and frantic search for my dream kitchen. Water was leaking into my kitchen floor caused by a leaking pipe between my exterior wall and my kitchen sink. The initial assessment indicated that we would need to replace a wall, our cabinets, our countertop, and our flooring. In short, I needed a new kitchen.

While this sounded like an absolute dream come true at first, I quickly found myself overwhelmed and frustrated. My judgmental spirit is quick to decide if I love or hate something whether it is a piece of art, a book, or a tiled back-splash but I found that I have absolutely no earthly ability to design anything. None. I know what I like but I am not good at creating something from nothing.

This should not have surprised me because this has been an overarching theme throughout my life. I have strong opinions but I don’t know how to build anything out of them. I’ve struggled with my identity and been embarrassingly envious of women who have found their niche, their purpose, or their dream come true. I’ve prayed that God would give me something that would steer me in a clear direction. I’ve asked Him to pick a path and set me on it. Yet, for years I’ve felt stuck in the middle of the crowd, wandering aimlessly towards nothing.

Instead of meticulously sketching out my dream kitchen, I found myself pinning countless kitchen cabinets and counter tops to my Pinterest board declaring, “I like this one the best” about ten different times. Seriously. I made up my mind and changed my mind and made up my mind again over and over until I no longer believed in my own ability to make a decision. I took every “What Is Your Design Style” quiz I could find online and shook my head in dismay when the only style match that I received repetitively was “Eclectic”.

When the final inspection revealed that the massive air dryers in our kitchen had done their job and removed all the moisture from our cabinets, walls, and floor and that a kitchen re-model would no longer be necessary, I sighed with relief like a prisoner who had just been pardoned. Deciding what I wanted most was no longer my responsibility and I was relieved.

Over the past 20 years as an adult, I’ve embraced a plethora of architectural and decorative design styles for my life that have never felt complete. I’ve tried to paint myself as a military wife or a wounded warrior wife. I’ve attempted to drape my motherhood with my experience as a homeschool mama and co-op leader. I’ve wired my heart for being the mama of a child with cancer and for being a lupus warrior, myself. I’ve adorned my walls with this ministry and that ministry and many fun hobbies that I picked up along the way. I’ve furnished my life with everything from expensive investment pieces to flea market finds and nothing has ever felt cohesive.

And then I re-read this verse.

Through skillful and godly wisdom, a house, a life, a home, a family is built, and by understanding it is established on a sound and good foundation, and by knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasure.”

Proverbs 24:3-4

That’s when I realized my life wasn’t quite as disheveled and mix-matched as I thought. Yes, my interests and my choices have been quite eclectic over the years but that does not make me any less Me.

The rooms in my house match the rooms in my heart. They are varied in size and style and color but they are each uniquely and beautifully mine. I can change up the paint and the flooring and the furnishings as often as I like but that won’t change who I am because I will always have the same solid foundation.

My faith.

My faith is my foundation and it is what my entire life is built upon, no matter what it looks like today or tomorrow. Storms have come and gone, knocking down walls and breaking out windows but my foundation has never wavered because my faith is built upon the Solid Rock. Jesus Christ is a “sound and good foundation” and by my hungry quest for more knowledge of Him, the rooms of my life are being filled with “rare and beautiful treasure”.

The foundation was poured years ago and I have fabricated rough walls and doors along the way, but they never connected cohesively because I wasn’t looking at the blueprints. I’ve been trying to figure out how to tie in my faith with my role as a mom or as a writer or as a student, when all along I should have been trying to figure out how to tie in each of those roles with my faith. A builder never builds a room first and THEN sets it on the foundation. A room is always built ON the foundation.

So today, with the launching of this blog, I’m unrolling the blueprints that God has given me. I’m not focused nearly as much on the decorating right now as I am with the foundation and the structure of each room. I have been neglecting the passions that God planted in my heart years ago out of fear that I could never make them match with the rest of the life I was building. Now I know that the passions of my heart are part of the foundation of my faith. They are God-gifts and if I don’t use them, I could very well lose them.

Welcome to She Builds Rooms of Treasure. I hope you will examine the blueprints of your own life as we do life together, filling the rooms of our lives with rare and beautiful treasure, for the glory of God.

May 25th will be my 41st birthday and with that, I will be making an exciting announcement. It will be the wall-raising of a new room in my life upon the foundation of my faith and I cannot wait to share it with you.