Not as those without hope

In my last post I talked about how I have grieved since I’ve been on the mission field. I grieve the loss of lots of different things in my life, but mostly I grieve the loss of the idols of my heart. The idols of safety and security, materialism and greed, comfort…I could go on and on. The idolotry of focusing on the sacrifice and not the blessing,” the mess and not the miracle”  (I totally stole that quote from somebody) sometimes can almost consume me.

There’s so much beauty in the sacrifice. But it is still A Sacrifice.

Sanctification hurts. Dying to self hurts. Being a living sacrifice hurts. And I’m going to tell you I climb off of that altar Every. Single. Day and I grieve the loss when I lay my idols down.

But I don’t grieve as one without hope. (I Thessalonians 4:13)

It’s not just for missionaries or the military or pastors and evangelists. It’s for every single person purchased by the blood of the Lamb.

The grief is ours, but the hope is ours too.

After my last post, I had a dear friend send me a message saying that she was happy to hear that it wasn’t easy for me. It wasn’t because she was happy to see me struggle, but because she just didn’t understand why it was so hard for her when she wasn’t even living on the mission field. And she thought it was easy for us. You know, us “spiritual folk”…

And it made her feel…normal.

Nope, DYING to yourself isn’t going to be sunshine and roses. I would dare say that if you aren’t feeling the pain of taking up your cross DAILY then there just might be something wrong…

Because death just shouldn’t feel good.

Some days I struggle to lay my life down again because I keep crawling right off of that altar.  And I’m not doing anybody any favors by pretending like that isn’t the ugly truth. Those idols are near and dear to my heart and to unclench my tight fists takes a miracle from the Holy Spirit.

A straight miracle.

And sometimes I grieve the loss.

But do you know what all of that does for me? It makes me run to Him.

Sometimes I even run to Him with idols tightly in my hands.

Why?

Because His burden is light, y’all. (You can take the girl out of Mississippi, but…)

Because….And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

Because the LORD your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.

Because the One who calls you is faithful, and He will do it.

Because the Father is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch you out of the Father’s hand.

Because His love reaches to the heavens, His faithfulness to the skies.

And because whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

Because He covers you with his feathers, and under his wings you find refuge.

Because His faithfulness is  your shield and rampart.

And you can say “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

Say it. Say it out loud with hope.

He began the work. He will complete it. He doesn’t use us because we’re somehow “worthy”. No, He uses us in spite of ourselves.

Its okay to grieve the loss, but grieve with hope that only comes from the One who can trade beauty for ashes.

Because He is faithful.

 

God is here too.

We have been in Bogota, Colombia since Tuesday night and I can wrap my brain around that.

What I can’t quite grasp is that we live here.

When we go back “home” it will be to visit, but this is where we live.

It feels very strange.

What I’ve been surprised at the most is how much I see Him here.

We all know that God is everywhere. We ask our children the catechism question, “Where is God?” and they respond, “God is everywhere!” Mine say it with a lot of emphasis, but I have to admit that I have never really, truly meditated on that thought before.

“Where shall I go from your Spirit? Where shall I flee from your presence? If I go to the heavens You are there! If I make my bed in the depths, You are there! If I ride on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there Your hand will lead me, Your right hand will hold me fast.”

His presence cannot be escaped.

I have never been more thankful for that truth than I am right now sitting in my bedroom in Colombia.

My missionary friends in India (hi Maggie and Alison) know this. Our friends in Africa (hi Mike and Susan) know this and if you’re a friend of mine reading this in America, He’s there too.

“The whole earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein…”

His presence cannot be escaped.

What is even more amazing, if that’s possible, is that His mercy and goodness can’t be escaped either.

The day we traveled here from the states, a little more than half of our bags made it with us.

They were all delivered the next day and I thought,” God didn’t have to give us our bags! He is so good!”

The first morning I woke up in Bogota to bright sun blinding me before 6 am and birds chirping right outside my window and my first thought was, “God is so good. He didn’t have to give me a sunny day and birds.”

Then I went downstairs and drank a cup of coffee for the first time in 3 months and it tasted good! (I have a coffee aversion during every pregnancy)

And I thought, “God is so good! He didn’t have to give me amazing Colombian coffee.”

Then we went out and started doing the paperwork required to find housing and guess what? Pregnant people are treated like queens here! We were rushed to the front of the line everywhere we went and got everything done in record time. God is so good!

Our team leader, Gary, did our family devotional for us the first night and he talked to the children (and us) about Psalm 23. He told them that God’s Word says, “Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life.”, but in Hebrew, the word “follow” is better translated, “chase”.

“Surely goodness and mercy shall chase me all the days of my life.

Yes, that’s exactly how I feel right now sitting in my bedroom in Bogota, Colombia.

God has chased me all the way to another continent with His presence and His goodness and His mercy.

Blessed be His name in all the earth.

Leavin’ on a jet plane.

After a wonderful weekend with our family at Madison Heights, I was reminded of something I wrote a while back.

Madison Heights, you are such a significant part of why we are boarding a plane to Bogota, Colombia today.

 

 

During seminary Josh began an internship at a PCA church plant in Madison. When we first began to attend the church, there were about 40 people meeting on Sunday nights. We instantly loved the feel of this church plant. I think it was mainly because our first two years of marriage were spent working in a very similar situation in Nashville. We still miss our friends there. So this little tiny church plant in Madison felt right.

Church plants are very unique in that you really get to see the nitty-gritty. People aren’t involved in a church plant unless they truly want to serve the church. It involves LOTS and LOTS of work. Setting up. Taking down. Starting ministries. Failing and starting over. Just the process pares the church down to a group of people who want to serve.  It’s lovely. We loved it. We still do.

When we first began worshiping there, Anne Elise was only 8 months old. I was just learning how to be a mom. We were living on love with one part-time salary and Josh was going to school full-time. After seminary, Josh became the full-time assistant pastor and by then the church was meeting on Sunday mornings in a school gymnasium. I had had one more baby and was still learning to be a mom. Now I was also learning to be a pastor’s wife.

I can’t say that Madison Heights loved and supported us. It was way beyond that. They accepted us. Wholly. They taught me to be a pastor’s wife. I have so many friends from seminary that come over and cry on my couch telling me all the stories of how hard it is for them to be the wife of someone on staff at their church. How they always feel like they’re in a fish bowl. I’m sure I’ve offended many a friend when I tell them, “I have no idea what you’re talking about. My church loves me and accepts me completely. I never feel judged. Never.” They loved me when I did a good job. They loved me when I did a terrible job. They loved me through all the learning. The good and the bad.

I never felt like I wasn’t adequate in their eyes and that is completely the truth. My church loves me. They pray for me. They accept me as a friend. A sister in Christ. A mother. Even a teacher. They stand up in front of groups of people and say these things. And if they are too nervous to stand in front of big groups then they whisper in my ear how loved I am. And not just loved – I feel like they are for me. 

Blessed? I have no words.

We have received gifts that you wouldn’t believe. One summer Josh’s air conditioner in his car stopped working. As soon as the church heard about it, someone took it in and paid to fix it. We have received anonymous gifts from people that we could never thank. We have had friends paint our house TWICE and lay sod in our back yard. And build a play set. And tile our bathroom shower.We have been given COUNTLESS gift certificates for dinner dates including babysitting. We have had friends that have flown back from business trips early to not miss a meeting for cross collaboration. We have received more meals than I can count while I had two more babies and was sick or on bed rest. Madison Heights paid Josh’s full salary for four months so that we could support raise full-time. And they have given. And given. And given.

So, no. I have no idea what those friends of mine are talking about. And I’m so thankful.

And so it was only par for the course when they told us that they were going to have a total of FOUR church wide garage sales that they were going to contribute to and publicize and give us all of the proceeds for.

They raised almost $7000.

Madison Heights, I can never ever thank you enough. You have meant more to our family than I can ever say. You have loved us so well. You have tirelessly and sacrificially served our family the way the body of Christ should. You have been a beautiful reflection of Him. He has used you to sharpen us and mature us. His name is written all over you. We have been so blessed because of you.

We love you dearly.

Josh, Emily, Anne Elise, Ava, Jak, and Matthew

A public thank you to Madison Heights

So we’re back from Bogota and it is my next mission (pun intended) to write a post all about that trip. And since you know I get blog posts out super quick, it will only be another month.

But first.

For those of you that don’t know.

During seminary Josh began an internship at a PCA church plant in Madison. When we first began to attend the church, there were about 40 people meeting on Sunday nights. We instantly loved the feel of this church plant. I think it was mainly because our first two years of marriage were spent working in a very similar situation in Nashville. We still miss our friends there. So this little tiny church plant in Madison felt right.

Church plants are very unique in that you really get to see the nitty-gritty. People aren’t involved in a church plant unless they truly want to serve the church. It involves LOTS and LOTS of work. Setting up. Taking down. Starting ministries. Failing and starting over. Just the process pares the church down to a group of people who want to serve.  It’s lovely. We loved it. We still do.

When we first began worshiping there, Anne Elise was only 8 months old. I was just learning how to be a mom. We were living on love with one part-time salary and Josh was going to school full-time. After seminary, Josh became the full-time assistant pastor and by then the church was meeting on Sunday mornings in a school gymnasium. I had had one more baby and was still learning to be a mom. Now I was also learning to be a pastor’s wife.

I can’t say that Madison Heights loved and supported us. It was way beyond that. They accepted us. Wholly. They taught me to be a pastor’s wife. I have so many friends from seminary that come over and cry on my couch telling me all the stories of how hard it is for them to be the wife of someone on staff at their church. How they always feel like they’re in a fish bowl. I’m sure I’ve offended many a friend when I tell them, “I have no idea what you’re talking about. My church loves me and accepts me completely. I never feel judged. Never.” They loved me when I did a good job. They loved me when I did a terrible job. They loved me through all the learning. The good and the bad.

I never felt like I wasn’t adequate in their eyes and that is completely the truth. My church loves me. They pray for me. They accept me as a friend. A sister in Christ. A mother. Even a teacher. They stand up in front of groups of people and say these things. And if they are too nervous to stand in front of big groups then they whisper in my ear how loved I am. And not just loved – I feel like they are for me. 

Blessed? I have no words.

We have received gifts that you wouldn’t believe. One summer Josh’s air conditioner in his car stopped working. As soon as the church heard about it, someone took it in and paid to fix it. We have received anonymous gifts from people that we could never thank. We have had friends paint our house TWICE and lay sod in our back yard. And build a play set. And tile our bathroom shower.We have been given COUNTLESS gift certificates for dinner dates including babysitting. We have had friends that have flown back from business trips early to not miss a meeting for cross collaboration. We have received more meals than I can count while I had two more babies and was sick or on bed rest. Madison Heights paid Josh’s full salary for four months so that we could support raise full-time. And they have given. And given. And given.

So, no. I have no idea what those friends of mine are talking about. And I’m so thankful.

And so it was only par for the course when they told us that they were going to have a total of FOUR church wide garage sales that they were going to contribute to and publicize and give us all of the proceeds for.

They raised almost $7000.

Madison Heights, I can never ever thank you enough. You have meant more to our family than I can ever say. You have loved us so well. You have tirelessly and sacrificially served our family the way the body of Christ should. You have been a beautiful reflection of Him. He has used you to sharpen us and mature us. His name is written all over you. We have been so blessed because of you.

We love you dearly.

Solid Ground

In Christ alone, who took on flesh

Fullness of God in helpless Babe

This gift of love and righteousness

Scorned by the ones He came to save

 

‘Til on that cross as Jesus died

The wrath of God was satisfied

For every sin on Him was laid

Here in the death of Christ I live

 

There in the ground His body lay

Light of the world in darkness slain

Then bursting forth in glorious day

Up from the grave He rose again

 

And as He stands in victory

Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me

For I am His and He is mine

Bought with the precious blood of Christ

 

No guilt in life, no fear in death

This is the power of Christ in me

From life’s first cry to final breath

Jesus commands my destiny

 

No power of hell, no scheme of man

Could ever pluck me from His hand

‘Til He returns or calls me home

Here in the power of Christ I stand

Biggest Announcement Ever

Well, maybe not the biggest…

I think I’m going to start putting that title on all of my posts, except then everyone will think I’m pregnant…and I probably am….

Okay, so big news to share. We (our team) have had a change of plans. I’ll give a little background for those of you who are new here. Our family is moving with another family to the mission field. The original plan was to go to Costa Rica for two years. During our time there, we were going to attend language school and participate in creating a training program for new missionaries going to the field. Our desire, and what we feel the Lord leading our families to do, is start a new work somewhere in Latin America where the Gospel has not taken root. We want to assist national pastors in planting churches where there is a need.

Well…

…two weeks ago we found out that there is a place better suited than Costa Rica to accomplish the training program, so we flipped a coin and decided that we’re moving to Bogota, Colombia. Just kidding about flipping a coin, we drew straws. No really, after much prayer and many conversations with MTW,  we decided that this is a much better fit. In fact we are absolutely thrilled with this change and let me tell you why.

First of all, there is a very reputable language school there that we will attend our first year. Secondly, there is a thriving team there and an established network of churches in Bogota. And if that was not enough, this is my favorite part…national  leaders and pastors are coming to Bogota from all over Latin America asking the team there to pease send missionaries to their countries because they want to duplicate what they are seeing happen in Colombia. God is moving there! Raise your hand if you want to be a part of that! No really, raise your hand!

Okay, for those of you freaking out about the drug cartel, violence, kidnapping and what not, let me speak to that. Colombia is not the place that it was 10 or 15 years ago. The team that is there now was pulled out from 2001 until 2006. The team leader told us that they feel so safe there that his wife walks alone at night. There are so many places here that you wouldn’t feel safe doing that. I think in terms of infectious diseases, not so much gangs and violence, so that was my main concern. I was very happy to hear that Bogota is not a city at high risk for malaria. Whew.

The fact of that matter is, and I know you all will agree with me here, God is in control of my life and your life. He is in control of my children’s lives and my husband’s life. “Which of you by worrying can add one more day to his life?” A hair doesn’t fall from our head without his permission. Any one of us could come down with a disease today or be a victim of a violent crime or a terrible accident. Our trust is in God alone. Our salvation comes from Him. Alone. But I get the concerns. God is teaching me this stuff.

So the last two weeks have been a lot of work. We have had to redo every single brochure, every mailout, packet, letter, card, every video, our website, every single thing said Costa Rica. Josh and Nate made a video (at midnight no less) describing what we are doing and answering questions. Some of you may not know that we have to raise all of our own support. Our plan and desire is that we are able to move to Bogota in August. We will only be able to do that if we have raised 100% of our support. Right now, we are at about 60 or 65%. We are completely dependent on monthly pledges. Please pray that the Lord leads people to give.

I’m going to link the video here. If you don’t care anything about the mission field or what we’re doing and if you have no desire to support us financially or pray for us. You MUST watch this video anyway! The guys recorded it at almost midnight and Josh is talking in his sleep. Seriously, his eyes are CLOSED the entire time. It’s the funniest thing I’ve ever seen. Go watch it. You can thank me later.

I forgot to mention one of the best things that is coming out of all of this. When I used to tell people that we were moving to the mission field, the first question they would ask was, “Where are you going?” then I would tell them “Costa Rica” and  they would get a huge smile on their face and say “Oh how fun!” like I was just going on an extended vacation. And then I  would smack them. Just kidding, I would never do that. Now, when I tell them I’m moving to the mission field and they ask me where I’m going and I say “Colombia” they get this look of intense concern on their face and immediately tell me that they will be praying for me.

Now that’s more like it.

Christian, you are not your own.

So, how about the great weather we’ve been having?

That’s kinda how I wanted to start this post.

Or how ’bout them Saints?

Just so you know, I’m really ready for something lighter on my blog. It’s been kinda heavy around here lately.

But this question has been weighing on my mind…

“Can I be a Christian and not believe that the Bible is inerrant?”

In other words, can I still be a Christian and believe that the Bible has flaws and error? *(see note)

The doctrine of inerrancy is simply this, “the doctrine that the Bible is fully truthful in all its teaching.” Scripture does not contradict itself. It does not misrepresent or manipulate the truth.

The attack on the doctrine of inerrancy is ages old. Wars have been fought on this issue alone.

The question is not, “does the Bible have a mistake?” but “does God make mistakes?”.

If we do not believe the Bible to be inerrant, then on what do we base our beliefs? The Bible itself claims to be inspired. If it claims to be inspired, but it isn’t, then God is a liar. If God is a liar…

So, what does the Bible claim about itself?

Hebrews 4:12 “For the Word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”

Isaiah 40:6 “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of God stands forever.”

Psalms 119:105 “Thy Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”

I Thessalonians 2:13  “When you received from us the Word of God’s message, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the Word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe.”

2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is God breathed…”

John 17:17 “Sanctify them by the truth; your Word is truth.”

I heard someone say this week, “I believe in the overall message of the Bible, but I don’t believe that it’s inerrant.” Why would someone believe in the overall message of a book that lies about being ultimate truth, perfect, infallible, eternal, God-breathed and without error?

I wouldn’t.

You know how much I like to over-simplify…

May I suggest that someone who holds to the view, “I am a Christian, but I don’t believe the Bible is without error.” is someone struggling with being told what to do?

Ahhh. That’s a big problem isn’t it? Who likes to be told, “You are not your own.” or “Submit your will to the Lord.” or “You are a living sacrifice.”?

Don’t I have rights?

How many times this week did you hear someone say, “It’s my body!”?

Christian, you are not your own.

This problem is as old as mankind. It is a problem that waged war ages ago. It is a problem that continues to wage war in the human soul. Mine and yours.

I fear this “self-sovereignty” is invading the Church.

The question of authority is the crux of the issue.
Absolute truth infringes on our authority over ourselves. It wages war on our autonomy. It is a direct attack on our rights.

Many times the Christian tries to “fix” Scripture. We try to make it fit into our choices, our perspective. We try to fit it into our idea of how we think things should be.

In Eugene Peterson’s, Eat This Book, he says, “We are fond of saying that the Bible has all the answers, and that is certainly correct…But the Bible also has all the questions, many of them that we would just as soon were never asked of us, and some of which we will spend the rest of our lives doing our best to dodge. You can’t reduce this book to what you can handle; you can’t domesticate this book to what you are comfortable with…This book has generative power; things happen to us as we let the text call forth, stimulate, rebuke, prune us. We don’t end up the same.”

Christian, you are not your own.

So, let’s say, I’m a Christian and I believe in the inerrancy and authority of Scripture. What does that mean for my life?

Let me give a big shout out to Eugene ’cause he answers this question in his book too!

“[The Bible] is given to us in the form of a story that is intended to shape our entire lives into the story of following Jesus, a life lived to the glory of God.”

The Christian submits to the text. Ouch.

It hurts. We feel its impact. We conform to it. We become transformed by it.

John Calvin said, “All right knowledge of God is born of obedience.”

The Christian must not only ask, “What does the Bible say?” but also, “How can I obey what it says?”

And what does the Bible say? Yes, that’s where the Christian must go and stay and live.

Live there.

1 Corinthians 6:20  “You were bought at a price. Do not become enslaved by the world.

2 Corinthians 5:17 “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has gone the new has come.”

Acts 5:29 “We must obey God rather than men.”

2 Corinthians 10:5 “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

1 John 3:16 “This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out His commands. In fact, this is love for God: to keep His commands. And His commands are not burdensome.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

Christian, you are not your own.

Okay, so glad we got all that worked out! {wink}

Next week something lighter like nuclear fusion or why eating dirt is a totally acceptable way to get in your trace minerals or how to keep Ava from putting peas in baby Matthew’s ears or why I can’t discipline my son like I discipline my daughters or why I’m thankful for spell-check. Something like that. Ish.

*I’m not addressing the issue of translation. Some translations are not as accurate as others. A good student of the Word will utilize available study helps to be sure of what God really is saying to us from the earliest documents. It’s well worth the effort.

Initiative 26: The vague wording argument.

I feel I need to address another argument concerning Initiative 26. I have included this in my original post, (please read it first, if you haven’t already) but feel I need to address it separately as well.

Argument #6 The initiative is poorly written.

I will admit I am probably as much baffled by this argument as by any other. I have heard it stated, “I am a Christian and I am against abortion, but the wording is too vague.” Too vague? Let’s have another look.

“…to define the word person…to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the functional equivalent…”

 

Vague? Hardly. The wording could not possibly be any more clear and concise. May I suggest that this is a misunderstanding concerning the purpose of an amendment? Take a look at our Bill of Rights. These amendments are one sentence. ONE SENTENCE! They do not address every possible implication of the amendment. They couldn’t possibly. They do not address ONE SINGLE implication. That’s not the purpose.

The purpose of this initiative is ONLY to establish a foundational truth, a fundamental principle. As of right now the concept of personhood is not defined in the constitution. IT SHOULD BE.

Now, if we are talking about the implications of this initiative being unknown, I whole heartedly agree. However, the initiative Is Not Vague. There will always be unknowns. Always.

Are there absolute implications if this amendment passes? YES! I am voting for this amendment for that reason, as well as the fact that there are ABSOLUTE IMPLICATIONS IF IT DOESN’T PASS.

We can’t be sure how some things will be interpreted if it passes. We CAN, however, be sure that the courts will continue to treat the unborn as expendable if it does not pass.

Friend, I ask you the question again, Do you believe that an unborn baby is a person?

Initiative 26 only establishes the personhood of the unborn.

This is the only question.

If you believe that an unborn baby is a person, vote yes.

Please stand up and speak for those that can’t defend themselves.

Initiative 26: Do you believe that an unborn baby is a person?

 

This post is for Christians.

If you are one of my friends or family members who don’t believe in the God of the Bible, then I understand how you may fall on a different side of the argument than I do. You may agree with me. But I get it if you don’t. I would love for you to read this post, but it’s not intended to address you.

This post is to address my Christian brothers and sisters who may have succumbed to the confusion that is circulating concerning Initiative 26.

Initiative 26 is an attempt to amend the constitution of the state of Mississippi.

The official ballot summary of the measure reads:

“Initiative #26 would amend the Mississippi Constitution to define the word ‘person’ or ‘persons’, as those terms are used in Article III of the state constitution, to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning, or the functional equivalent thereof.”

 

I want to address this issue on my blog because I have been shocked and grieved to see how many Christians are listening to what they hear on facebook, websites, google searches, etc. They are making decisions based on arguments they hear and their own fears instead of facts.

Initiative 26 only establishes the personhood of the unborn.

As Christians ,we have a lens through which we must see all of life. EVERYTHING must be filtered through this lens. It’s how we make sense of the world. If we believe the Bible to be true, then we won’t believe it when someone says the world was created by a huge random explosion. We won’t be swayed when someone says there is more than one way to get to heaven. We have a plumb line by which everything is measured.

Let’s address the plumb line first. What does the Bible say about the unborn?

Jeremiah “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you. Before you were born I set you apart…”

Isaiah “The Lord has called me from the womb; from my mother has he made mention of my name.”

Job “Did he not form us from within our mothers…”

Psalms “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.”

I could go on and on. This is my question to you.

Do you believe that an unborn baby is a person?

Let’s address the arguments.

Argument #1 They’ll take away our birth control pill.

I’ve been most surprised to find this is one of the biggest arguments against this initiative. Women are very afraid to lose their pill. A few years ago, I read that the pill (not the morning after pill, the regular hormonal birth control pill) can be abortifacient. Meaning, it can allow an egg to be fertilized and then cause a miscarriage. I was shocked. I was more than shocked, I was horrified. I grieved. I wondered if some of my babies had been aborted (yes, that’s the word I meant to use) by my using the pill. Then I became angry. I had researched it enough to find that it was, in fact, true. I couldn’t understand why Christian leaders weren’t standing up and telling us this! I started to tell my friends. I knew that they would have the same response that I did.

I was wrong.

They didn’t want to know. Most people that I told either didn’t believe me (I understand, I didn’t believe it at first, either) or they didn’t want to know. I even had close friends say, “Well, I just can’t get pregnant right now.” My heart aches just thinking about that. If this just rocks your world and you just can’t imagine life without the pill. Please, please examine your heart. I beg you. We CAN’T make decisions this big looking through a lens of convenience. This is not okay. We just don’t have that right.

Does this mean that things might change? Probably. Does this mean that you may have to do something that is more complicated than popping a pill or using an IUD? Most likely. Does this mean that they will make the birth control pill illegal in this state? Hopefully. I understand that there are people with issues (PCOS, hormones, etc) that take the pill for reasons other than pregnancy prevention. If you are also using the pill as a form of birth control because you are sexually active, you could be CAUSING miscarriages. You could be CAUSING miscarriages.

Argument #2 What about ectopic pregnancy? They will let a woman die because they won’t remove the embryo.

An ectopic pregnancy is where the embryo implants in the fallopian tube and begins to grow there. There is no chance that the baby can live. Yes, it is still a baby, but it can’t live because it never made it to the womb.. NO ONE is saying that the life of the mother is now (or ever) invalid. “Life of the mother” cases have always been decided by the mother and her family. This was the case before Roe versus Wade, when abortion WAS NOT LEGAL. No one is going to require a mother to die to save a baby that cannot live. Please don’t believe this lie. No one is going to require a mother to die PERIOD. Sanctity of life concerning the unborn does not oppose the sanctity of life of the mother.

Argument #3 What if a person is raped? They won’t give her the morning after pill.

Before I begin to address this argument, please hear me say that I have deep compassion for anyone whose life has been violated in this way. I cannot imagine the emotional and physical devastation this brings. However, if she were to get pregnant as a result of rape, that doesn’t change the fact that it is a pregnancy. It is a baby. It’s not okay to kill. a baby. Causing an abortion, in my opinion is not only NOT protecting the mother, it is causing her further harm and distress.

Argument #4 This initiative is legislating morality.

Huh? Isn’t that what laws do? Name one law that isn’t somehow legislating morality. Someone argued with me this week saying, “Well, I would never have an abortion, but…” Well, why not?! You wouldn’t kill your baby, but you wouldn’t tell someone else not to kill theirs? Do you believe that an unborn baby is a person?

Argument #5 They won’t let us do in vitro fertilization.

IVF creates an embryo (a fertilized egg) outside the womb and then implants it. This initiative is not proposing that you can’t make babies (inside or outside the womb). This initiative IS saying that you can’t kill them. This WILL affect the way we do IVF. The fact is, there are OVER 500,000 frozen embryos in the U.S. ALONE. I didn’t accidentally type too many zeros. OVER HALF A MILLION. Someone on facebook said that this initiative would cause a crisis because we couldn’t “discard” them the way we have been. The reason we have over 500,000 right now is because there are a lot of people that know that those are actual babies and they are not willing to “discard” them. Many of these frozen embryos are available for adoption. They’re called snowflake babies. This initiative will require us to be responsible with the way we do IVF. Probably, people will not be able to fertilize more eggs than they are willing to eventually implant. Inconvenient? Maybe. Expensive? Probably.

I believe that human life begins at fertilization. I also believe that this is what the Bible teaches. Human life equals personhood. I have asked several people on facebook that are arguing against Initiative 26 this question, “When do you believe a baby (an embryo) becomes a person?” They all give very vague answers, even saying, “No one can know for sure.” The same person then states, “I am 100% sure that an embryo is not a person.” Anyone can see the huge fallacy in this argument. If you are completely uncertain of when personhood begins, how can you be entirely certain of when it does NOT begin? Someone then argued, “There is no magic line that an embryo crosses into personhood!” My point exactly. There is no magic line. An embryo is already a person.

Argument #6 The initiative is poorly written.

I will admit I am probably as much baffled by this argument as by any other. I have heard it stated, “I am a Christian and I am against abortion, but the wording is too vague.” Too vague? Let’s have another look.

 “…to define the word person…to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the functional equivalent…”

 

Vague?  Hardly. The wording could not possibly be any more clear and concise. May I suggest that this is a misunderstanding concerning the purpose of an amendment? Take a look at our Bill of Rights. These amendments are one sentence. ONE SENTENCE! They do not address every possible implication of the amendment. They couldn’t possibly. They do not address ONE SINGLE implication. That’s not the purpose.

 The purpose of this initiative is ONLY to establish a foundational truth, a fundamental principle. As of right now the concept of personhood is not defined in the constitution. IT SHOULD BE.

 Now, if we are talking about the implications of this initiative being unknown, I whole heartedly agree. However, the initiative Is Not Vague. There will always be unknowns. Always.

 Are there absolute implications if this amendment passes? YES! I am voting for this amendment for that reason, as well as the fact that there are ABSOLUTE IMPLICATIONS IF IT DOESN’T PASS.

 We can’t be sure how some things will be interpreted if it passes. We CAN, however, be sure that the courts will continue to treat the unborn as expendable if it does not pass.

Friend, I ask you the question again, Do you believe that an unborn baby is a person?

Initiative 26 only establishes the personhood of the unborn.

This is the only question.

If you believe that an unborn baby is a person, vote yes.

Please stand up and speak for those that can’t defend themselves.