This story and what I've concluded from it, however, is mine.
April 12, 2006. A happy, growing family of eight is expecting their seventh child, due in September. They recently purchased a bright red fifteen passenger van, which they named "Big Red" (for obvious reasons) so as to accommodate all of them. They are very excited, from the oldest to the youngest, for "Peanut's" arrival.
The kids and dad are working out in the garden while mom is at her doctor's appointment. When the phone rings, the blonde eight-year-old runs to answer it and bring it to her daddy.
"Get Daddy," her mom's strangely urgent voice commands.
After a few minutes, the dad breaks the news to the children. "Peanut is dead."
The world stops.
What could this mean?
How could a little baby, not even born, die?
To me, it made no sense.
At eight years old, I believe I was too young to even really grieve properly.
My great-grandmother had died recently, but that was different. I had known her. I had talked to her. I had loved her.
I hadn't really loved "Peanut," in the same way, I suppose.
But it hurt. A lot. It still does sometimes.
On April 15th, 2006, the day before Easter, my mother delivered her dead child, my little brother.
He was eighteen weeks old.
We named him Joseph, after a man in the Old Testament who claimed the promise of Romans 8:28 for himself. We trust that although his death was a terrible thing, God would use it for good. We also had hope through Easter that year, that death is nothing to fear now that our risen Savior has conquered it. I look forward, Lord willing, to someday meeting my little brother in heaven.
I have pictures of him, you know.
At only eighteen weeks, he had a little nose.
He fit into my dad's hand.
And yes, I firmly believe that he was alive. He was a human being, just like you and me.
I may not be a scientist, or a doctor, and I don't claim to be really knowledgeable at all about this topic.
But to look at his little face, the face of a fetus, and say, "If he's going to have a bad life, if his mother doesn't want him, if he was never expected or wanted by anyone in the first place, if his family will have a hard time caring for his handicap, then he doesn't deserve to live. He's not human yet, anyway."
Excuse me?You can't honestly be telling me that I am any more human than that little boy, that I have more of a right to live than my little brother simply because I have already been born. You can't be telling me that he's not a person yet simply because he hasn't yet taken his first breath. I believe that Joseph was a person, even in his eighteen short weeks of life.
"Like toddler and adolescent, the terms embryo and fetus do not refer to nonhumans but to humans at various stages of development. It is scientifically inaccurate to say a human embryo or a fetus is not a human being simply because he is at an earlier stage than an infant. This is like saying that a toddler is not a human being because he is not yet an adolescent. Does someone become more human as he gets bigger? If so, then adults are more human than children, and football players are more human than jockeys. Something nonhuman does not become human or more human by getting older or bigger; whatever is human is human from the beginning, or it can never be human at all. The right to live does not increase with age and size; otherwise, toddlers and adolescents have less right to live than adults." ---Randy Alcorn, quoted from his article "Abortion" in the April 2013 edition of Tabletalk Magazine.
This is my story.
These are my thoughts.
What are yours?