Put your money where your mouth is

Much of the thread that I commented on yesterday focuses on “pro-life”, with abortion standing out as a significant issue. One person made a comment that I think should both encourage and sober anyone who professes to hold a view on this topic. The commentor writes the following:

If you are on this comments list and you are vehemently pro-life… kudos to you… but if you do not participate in one or more of the following: adoption, foster care, helping provide babysitting for low income families and single parents… helping out pregnant teens… than frankly, your opinion is just that: an opinion. How many opinions did Jesus have without actions?”

You can read the rest of her response here. Where is the church (as in you and me) in this? Do we hold opinions and opinions alone? Where is the action?

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8 thoughts on “Put your money where your mouth is

  1. How many opinions did Jesus have without actions?

    First of all Jesus did not have opinions. He spoke the truth of God. His actions and words were in line with the will of the Father. To argue otherwise cheapens the truth of God.

    Interesting things strawmen. They are so easily burned.

    To discount an argument such as someone being pro-life and then questioning whether the commenter is doing anything such as adoption and so forth is an invalid argument just an opinion is bogus.

    We are called to the purpose of God that he puts before us. I work with Alcoholics and go to the prisons. My time is sufficiently filled, so I do not have time to deal with helping unwed mothers or the like. Frankly the opportunity has not presented itself either. This does not make my opinion that abortion is wrong any less valid.

    This argument is an invalid guilt trip and I do not subscribe to it.

  2. So squawkboxnoise you know of no single mothers? No fatherless children? What sort of utopia do you live in? Obviously not the same world as Jesus lived. Time is such a precious commodity these days.

  3. sqaukbox, interesting comment, and an excellent alternative view. however, consider this: if one holds to the view that unborn children are living human beings and deserve the same rights, which is the thesis of pro-life, shouldn’t that same person support adoption, foster care, and really any alternative to killing these children? isn’t it our responsibility to do so? i see your point, though, in the “to each, his own calling” response. but others lend their support to you. why not do the same for them, if not with performing the act then monitarily and politically supporting those whose calling is to defend those children? but you are correct, your view is not invalidated by your inability to aid in that area. and those of us who have been affected by abortion as i have appreciate the fact that you think like we do. just that is a victory, in this world. just my thoughts, do what you like with them. and, for the record, i appreciate what you’re doing with alcoholics. as a psych. major, i have a grasp of what they go through medically and i thank God for every person like you who goes and ministers to them.

    Christina, can you tell us more about how you feel and what you think about what the commentator said? i personally love to hear your views on these things. and, as usual, thought provoking. keep on writing!

    will

  4. I heard something about this the other day, in leaving off the support and by ONLY advocating that the issue lies within preserving the life of the child you really can’t claim to call yourself pro-life, but only pro-birth. Semantics it may be. But it’s a sorry thing to claim that the issue ceases to be an issue once the child breathes their first. They, the mother and others associated have the rest of the infancy (and that’s only the beginning) to get through.

  5. Well said Bec! That sums it up beautifully. I must confess that I am “pro-life” and would never recommend that someone has an abortion. However, I don’t think this is a black and white issue in legislative terms. I work in the fostercare field, and see the devastation of unwanted children, young teen pregnancies, of families who are so disadvantaged economically, socially, emotionally etc that regardless of their best intentions to parent they are unable to meet the needs of their children. The thought I wanted to raise here is that legislating against abortion (and focussing our energy on this topic alone) does not address the issues that lead to unwanted /unsupported pregnancies, nor as Bec aptly points out, does it come anywhere near supporting women, children and families, post-birth. The commentor on McClaren’s post really just highlights that our responsibility for supporting families goes beyond birth. As Christians we should be advocating politically for these families. Those who can open up our homes to support mothers, children or both, should. It is not hard to have someone around for dinner. It is not hard to drop off some food or mow a lawn. I understand squarkboxnoise that not all of us can do all of these things, and it sounds as though you are doing great work within the prisons. So many of us don’t however do anything at all, and live our comfortable middle class lives barely even encountering people who are in need or crisis. Yet we so easily judge them and their circumstances.

  6. Will, just re-read your comment, and thanks for your thoughts. I notice that you said something about being affected by abortion in some way personally, and I reckon it is pretty important that as we explore this emotive topic to always remember that there are people out there for whom this is not just another debate. It is something that touches personally and perhaps painfully in one way or another, and I want to always be respectful of that.

  7. I commented because EVERYTIME a question of sin and especially abortion or sex outside of marriage comes up and a follower of Christ defends their position Biblically the “oppositon couches the argument in such a manner that one must defend themseleves rather than word of God. Example…”Well what are you doing?” The opposition has already lost the basic argument because they cannot argue with the word of God. So they use a guilt trip to justify their actions and beliefs.

    Jesus word has now become and opinion. I don’t believe I have ever read where Jesus said Maybe or I think. He gave us guidance for how we should live our lives and his commands were black and white. This “opinion” argument is not unlike the arguement of the serpent in the garden. I don’t buy it.

    BTW Scott I live in the same world you do.

    Sin is real simple to dissect. I know cause I sin all the time in one way or another. I am not perfect. Sin is an act of selfishness that says, “I know better than God”. Abortion carries that thought to a more than tragic end. “I did not trust God to be celebate so now I am in trouble so I won’t ask God for help, I’ll choose the answer the world offers.”

    I do not condemn the woman that has gotten herself in trouble, nor do I condemn the woman that has had an abortion. If given the opportunity I will help. I don’t condemn anyone because I know what happens in my heart when I screw up. I know what happens in my heart when I sin and act selfish and don’t trust God. So why should I condemn anyone? That ain’t my job.

    Each of us is called to a certain purpose acccording to Gods purpose. Some to help in one place and some to help in another. As I said above, I don’t buy the guilt trip and my belief is valid.

  8. Thank you for highlighting that quote Christine, it reminded me that we can only ask people to follow our ideals when we give them suficient choice. We need to help people feel confident and comfortable with alternatives.

    Please leave the sticks at home, they only beat issues under the carpet, they don’t solve them. Stopping access to abortions just increases the dangers for everyone.

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