Thursday, November 14, 2013

The Death Penalty of Death

With my Catholic new-vert status I've taken a very hard and different look at a couple of things I used to simply take for granted. Sadly, the biggest difference is my reevaluation of life in all forms.

Previously, in my Southern Baptist tradition it was sort of an unwritten rule -- Pro-life but on the other hand Pro-Death(penalty). You were against Abortion, but it was okay to prevent conception artificially. You were always praying for the souls of others, but rooting for the murders to die like a modern day linching. Jesus said to love but there are just simply some that don't "deserve" that love.

As I've grown in faith, love, and understanding. I've come to realize just how wrong; how hypocritical things were taught. It seems in Catholic circles there are those that refer to Cafeteria Catholics or Half-Caths had very similar views. Maybe it's age, maybe it's the recent birth of my daughter, maybe a gift of insight but I've come to look at this a whole lot different.

After my divorce, one of my List Goals was to simply come to realize that I would never have children -- a carrot that was held over me for a decade. Well years, and a happy marriage later I'm not only father to four fantastic pre-fab kids, but as of five months ago the father to a fantastically beautiful daughter.

But why would all of that change my views on life, death, artificially birth control etc. Frankly, because until I became a father I simply didn't understand. I never really knew now fragile, precious, tenuous and beautiful life is wrapped up all in one package. Sure, there are some people that literally drip with evil. There are people whose morality is forever challenged. That doesn't mean that we get to play God. On the contrary those are exactly the people we should be praying for and spending some time with; not to drag us down but to show them just what a gift we are enjoying and how awesome it is.

What about rape? What about that twelve year old that was raped by her father/uncle/brother? Wouldn't abortion be "justified" in that instance? The answer is a sad, no. We cannot give values to life or we begin down a very slippery slope. One of which we currently find ourselves on. We need to stop assigning mortal values to "valid" pregnancies and babies.

Back in college I was party to an abortive pregnancy. That child would have turned twenty this year. It was unplanned and the child's mother and I broke up about a year later. The death that I caused weighs very heavy. I certainly wish I could forgive myself but like many instances that followed it was one of several bad decisions I made.

If I could put a pretty little bow on this I would simply say that human life, any human life is precious regardless of the value that we or society want so desperately to append to it. Even if we don't value a pregnancy or a criminal Someone does, and that Someone will ask us all why we did or didn't do something to protect, love or keep the life. What are we going to say? It was a burden? It was too hard? All the while looking to our Savior who died so painfully on the cross. Oh what children are we.

Pray for my forgiveness.
Pray for the soul I lost.
Pray for the souls lost to indifference.
Pray for the souls forgotten or deemed beyond saving.