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Christ-mas Child?

December 20, 2022

This time of year tends to give me the ‘soft and warm’ feeling that can so often be missing as the everydayness of life hardens me to all that I experience. As Christ-mas day approaches, this has happened again, mainly during worship at Crosswinds Church or when I am alone and listening to music that honors my Savior. To quote a lyric from one of Tom Jones’ significant hits, “… it’s not unusual…” for tears to form and my throat to tighten as the message of the music affects me.

Last year I began driving for Lyft to (hopefully) generate extra income and have, for the most part, enjoyed doing this. Some time ago, I started a subscription to I heart radio to provide a mixture of music for my passengers should they ask about something other than what I usually listen to (Christ-centered music). So far, that has only happened once, and I hope that whether my passenger asks about the message of the music or not, a seed will be planted while they ride in my car.

Today, December 20th, I picked up a lady from one of the area hotels and, assuming she was headed to the airport, began driving in that direction (she had her suitcase with her when she came out of the hotel). The Lyft app began alerting me that I was off track, so I asked my passenger (who had already told me she had flown into Wilmington the day before) if she was going to the airport or another destination. She confirmed that she was not yet going to the airport but had to make a stop first. Following the cues from the app, we soon arrived at an office off 17th street whose name was relatively innocuous, making me wonder what kind of business it was.

I wished her a ‘Merry Christ-mas’ as she got out of the car, to which she just shook her head without making any reply. That “…still, small voice…” stirred me to check, and I discovered that it was the Planned Parenthood (a misnomer if ever there was one) center for the area; apparently, she had flown up here from Texas to get an abortion, whether to hide this from her husband or just as such was not available in Austin.

How she came to that decision is beyond us, and I grieve for her thinking that this was her only option. The thought came to me how much she (and all involved in providing such or seeking that ‘service’) needed God’s grace and love. While Mary did not have such ‘clinics’ available to her back in that time, there were other means to rid the women of an unwanted pregnancies:

While the modern practice of abortion is far different from anything of the biblical era, there are occurrences of a failed pregnancy, either purposefully or not. One example of this is from Numbers 5:11-31 that describes the test of the adulterous wife. If a man was suspicious of his wife’s fidelity, he would take her to the high priest, who would make a beverage for the woman to drink made from water and “dust from the tabernacle floor.” Supposedly, if she had been unfaithful “her abdomen will swell and her womb will miscarry,” and if she was innocent the drink had no effect.

As for the “pro-life” perspective, the 1st-century Christian text known as the Didache states: “do not murder a child by abortion or kill a new-born infant.” Furthermore, Tertullian, a 3rd-century Christian theologian, contended that abortion should be conducted only in situations in which irregular positioning of the fetus in the womb would risk the life of the pregnant woman.

I will be praying for that young woman and everyone in her situation. So should we all without condemning or attacking their decision. We all have made decisions that violate the holiness of God; we all need to surrender to God’s amazing grace.

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