Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Is His Grace Sufficient Enough for Me? Part II of III
Well, as you can imagine, the weeks and months that followed were unbearable. The night after the funeral I couldn’t sleep or get comfortable in bed, and when I finally got up in the morning I had somehow thrown my neck out. For the next week, I would sleep sitting upright because the weight of my own head on a pillow made it worse. I went to a chiropractor for relief and while I was waiting in her office I stared blankly out the window. Fall in this state is nothing short of spectacular. But when I looked out, all I could see was death. Every plant, every blade of grass, every tree was screaming back at me, “See, everything dies!”
My own body was in confusion…I delivered a baby, and yet there was no one to nurse. The swelling, throbbing, and aching of my body were a constant reminder of my loss. I remember telling Ryan that I felt like my actual body was in mourning. I had only one desperate prayer that I prayed throughout the days and nights, “Lord God in Heaven, have mercy on my mind. Don’t let me go into depression again.” You see, when Abbey was around two and we found out she was suffering from cerebral palsy (and not just a “developmental delay” as we’d been told) I went into such a dark place. I could write a whole different series on that (which I will at some point) but for time’s sake, let me just say that for someone who is generally upbeat and loves a crowd, the isolation and sadness I went through were suffocating. I gained a ridiculous amount of weight, had social anxiety that at times kept me home-bound, and cried more than I thought humanly possible. I did not want to go there again, ever again.
The Lord was in fact merciful to me. Our church and the community cooked enough meals for me to last two months. I was amazed at how many of the older women from my church would come up to me and privately share their own similar experience. Social times and media have changed so drastically over the years. These sweet little old ladies were never allowed to talk about their pain and suffering, but they carried their loss inside for all these years, and then blessed me so much by letting me know I wasn’t alone. My senior pastor’s wife had delivered not one, but three stillborn children. In addition to her regular phone call, she sent little notes and handmade cards regularly for a very long time. I’m not sure if anyone else has had parents and in-laws who prayed and grieved alongside their children as much as Ryan and I. I read the Bible…I begged God to give me his thoughts and understanding. Not least of all, He gave me a song…I played it over and over again for comfort. I still find myself singing or humming it from time to time.
God in his goodness tucked me in under his wing, and like a shelter, He protected my mind from the cloud of darkness that no doubt Satan wanted to spread like a blanket over me. You may wonder what all of this has to do with abortion…why, on a week in our country where people everywhere are proclaiming the right to life for unborn children, I have chosen to tell a story about a pregnancy expected, a child wanted, in what was the perfect and safest of circumstances. And for that to make sense, I need to take you back to the day of our delivery.
Twelve hours or so after we delivered, I was discharged and sent home. There was something else I was feeling in my heart that I didn’t share with you before. As they were taking me by wheelchair down the hospital halls, I kept staring at the keepsake box they gave me and thinking, “I can’t believe I’m leaving with a box instead of a baby.” I felt so much anger. Not anger at God for letting this happen, as some might expect, but anger at every woman or man who had participated in an abortion. You have to know, this includes dear friends and relatives that I care about. I hated them…I hated them for giving away the chance for something I would have given anything to have. Only hours before, I had been caressing and kissing a frame that was woven together by God himself. A frame that some people say doesn’t contain life yet. I have a lot of friends, relatives, and former students on Facebook. The chance that I’m not speaking about one of you is slim to none. And don’t be confused by my words…I’m not talking about “righteous anger” here, I’m talking about pure, unfiltered hate.
Do you know what the Bible has to say about hate?
1 John 2:11 But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blind.
1 John 4:20 Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.
And if you want to talk about something cutting into your heart, how about this one:
1 John 3:15 Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.
So I ask you who have been a part of an abortion, a question I asked myself…Kimberly Drew who was walking around in darkness, the liar who didn’t love God, the murderer without eternal life…is God’s grace sufficient enough for us?
Continued in Part III