Added May 10: I had no time to edit this yesterday, so I did a little once-over today. I still don't think it says all that I wanted to say. It seems a little... "matter of fact". I don't want it to lack compassion. God knows I understand something of fear and health crisis during pregnancy. But at the same time, much was given to us as a people and much is expected. Compassion is not an excuse for unethic. To love does not always mean to allow. Sometimes the way out of a situation is the way through. Many thoughts on this topic. Oh well... for what it's worth, here's attempt number two:
Steve says it's not a morality tale and that he would stand by anyone who did kill their "dancing" babies. This is a very popular stance these days. So popular in fact that a professor of theology at Fuller Seminary regurgitated the same mushy point of view. "God supports whatever you do, and so do I."
I disagree. The best advice given was to try and be like Christ, and I don't remember Christ ever killing children for any reason.
At one point, Steve got mad at God charging: "This is the type of decision YOU'RE supposed to make!" When 4 hearts started beating, the decision was made.
Yes, there is pain involved in following Christ. Pain and lots of it. Christ told us to count the cost of following Him before we did. The cost referred to, however, is the high cost of striving to be like Christ, not the high cost of screwing up big time when you don't want to.
Steve, Shelly and the quads could have lost everything by trying to be like Christ. Many people have. Many people followed Christ, did not kill their children, and did not have a "happy ending". For them the high cost is a reality. Trusting in spite of receiving the poop-i-fied end of the stick... that's a difficult, difficult gig, and a beautiful, beautiful thang.
Killing your children to save your wife or to save other children is NOT trusting God. It is NOT loving Him more than yourself, your wife or your children. And it is not following Christ.
Believe me... I understand risky business. I understand hurting and worrying and being a "decent" person with health decisions to make. None of that is easy, and all of it is understandable. But when decisions are hard, it doesn't automatically make them Christ-oriented, and I contend that some decisions are more Christ-like than others.
When I got a Staph infection in my PICC it could have killed me and my daughter. I could have aborted her to lessen the risk to myself. Potentially, we could have both died if I hung in there with that confounded line. My liver wasn't happy either. It wanted that kid out. Tough decisions... unless you trust God. Unless you are willing to give Him your life and the life of your child, unless you are willing to entrust your surviving spouse and child to Him. The circumstances might suck a massive butt, but the decisions become really quite easy.
I am not attempting to criticize Steve and Shelly or anyone like them. I understand people making "difficult decisions" in a health crisis, but I also understand that good choices are more clear than people may imagine, even when tremendous risk and loss are involved.
When my preacher was at my hospital bedside and I told him that I was really tempted to abort to get myself out of my debilitating health crisis, one that I really and truly felt I could not bear, he took my hand and told me he understood. He told me anyone would. But he also told me that God wants our all, that I knew I could not abort my child in the name of health. It became clear to me that to suffer horribly, even to die in the name of God would be better.
Oh, it's not a popular notion by any means. And people are so confused about these types of issues even though the Bible is rife with the concept of following Christ even unto physical death. I did not want to endure that illness. But I did what I thought I could not do. Only because of Christ. ONLY because of Christ. I know this because I went it alone before and failed when I made a "difficult decision" and aborted my child in the second trimester. Like I know my own face in the mirror, I KNOW that was NOT following Christ; it was NOT what God wanted.
So even though I suck and I make a lot of mistakes every single day, decisions and choices in life are never ever hard. Faith and obedience, however, are exceedingly difficult. To me, that's what Steve was really talking about though he may not have been able to identify that.
God wants my all, but more often than not I don't give it. My personal concerns have no bearing on what is and what is not "following Christ".
It's not hard to make a faith-based decision. It's hard to lose your wife and/or children because you do. Serious sacrifice hurts. Giving your all often involves great difficulty and personal sorrow.
Who better understands than Christ? Who better to follow?
:: ashli 10:22 AM # ::