I read an article over at The Federalist today by writer Mary Vought. She brought a very personal argument on letting children have the right to live, as the New Yorker brought forth an article by a woman who wished she aborted her child.
Additionally, as a pro-life Christian, you can imagine the frustration I felt when reading a mother lamenting the missed opportunity to abort her sick child. As one would imagine, I had an overwhelming desire to write a response that would refute every single one of her points, making a fool of her arguments and calling into question her credibility as mother and provider for her son.
But, as I read her story a second and a third time, I began to relate to her on the one item we could probably agree on—the fact that having a child with a severe illness is scary. For her, this fear seems to have manifested into anger. She writes about mothers (like me) who choose to give birth to a CF child, “The women who willingly made choices that were never presented to me and chose a child’s suffering: Sometimes I hate them. I also hate the women who were supposed to care for me. I hate the faceless people at the lab.”
The way our culture has been set up, we worship death. Our materialism has gone so far that there are women out there who would rather kill their children than love and support them through good times or bad. This needs to change, and it starts with Christians speaking out on life. God is life as surely as any of His other qualities. Being made in His image, even corrupted by this world is something we should treasure.
As a Christian, my faith teaches me instead that every disabled child bears the same marks of his or her Creator in whose image they are “fearfully and wonderfully made,” meaning with an intent and the Creator’s seal of satisfaction. And every disability has a purpose.
In the Bible, Jesus’ disciples ask him who bears the responsibility for the blindness of a man they pass by. Jesus responds, “It is was not that this man sinned or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him.” That man’s blindness had a purpose, and it was to reveal the glory of God.
My daughter’s CF has a purpose—that the works of a sovereign God may be displayed someway and somehow. Time will tell. I suspect that conviction will prompt the same emotions in Gann that her conviction did in me. But is there a higher view of disability? Perhaps amidst all the pain and the sorrow, never to be minimized, that comes with enduring a disability, there can also be the hope and comfort that when the God of the universe created my daughter he pronounced his handiwork good and purposeful.
Mary says it better than I do. Difficult situations and conditions have an additional purpose — it gives us reminders to engage in prayer. Prayer is the most powerful tool in our lives and especially in our death-worshipping society, we need more of it. Paul told us to pray without ceasing, to live our entire lives as a prayer to the Lord God, and the best thing we can do for our children, even through their infirmities, do the same. God loves the sick and the weak, the way Jesus lived his live shows that. Let us do the same.