I’m pro-life. Staunchly pro-life. But I find myself using words and phrases I don’t really mean.
For example, mother-to-be. One who is a mother-to-be is one who isn’t pregnant yet, but that isn’t how we use the term. If there’s a baby already growing inside the mom, she’s a mother. Right at that instant of conception—even if she doesn’t know it. She’s definitely a mother when she begins to behave differently for the sake of her baby. When she gives up caffeine or meat with nitrates or starts doing yoga stretches to help with childbirth. Even when she starts reading What To Expect When You’re Expecting. That woman is a mother. And that man is a father.
Somehow, even in the church, we don’t mourn the loss of an unborn infant through miscarriage the way we would mourn a three-month-old who died of SIDS. We tend to dismiss women who’ve suffered the loss of a child as not-yet-mothers. “You’ll be a mom one day?” Why is that?
I believe it’s because we’ve been tainted by the world’s values for so long, we don’t even realize that we’ve not completely picked up God’s heart for children and for life.
Jeremiah 1:5 says that God knew us before we were in our mother’s wombs. If he knew us before we were conceived, He definitely knew us while He was forming our inward parts. Psalm 139:16 talks about planning our days before we were born.
Our God believes in LIFE! That’s what He’s all about.
Shabbat is about life.
The commandments about how to treat others is about life.
The sacrifices (oddly enough) are about life.
Jesus clarified God’s commitment to life when He reminded the Pharisees that if a life is at stake, it’s permissible (even God’s idea) to break a commandment.
So, how do we get that commitment to LIFE deep within our beings?
Perhaps we should begin to change our definitions. A pregnant woman and a woman who has lost a child she never got to hold—both of these women are mothers!
Perhaps, on Mother’s Day, we can honor mothers who don’t get to hold their children—mothers of children who have died.
Perhaps we can commit to mourning pregnancy loss as much as we do the deaths of children we can see.
Perhaps we can even talk to the babies inside the womb. (I’m sure the moms would rather we do that than to rub our hands all over their bellies. [One of my pet peeves. Sheesh! How rude!])
Perhaps we can get rid of the idea that, hey, babies have been born for millennia–no big deal. It is a big deal! Every single birth. Every single baby. It’s LIFE!
As believers in the God of Israel, the God who created us all, we should be living out what we believe in this area. We should be as excited about life as God is.
All those “perhaps we” statements above? I’m committing to them. It isn’t about avoiding offense. It’s about making sure our core values go deep. Anyone with me on this?