Well it’s been quite a week on all my newsfeeds and, for whatever reason, I do feel that I have some thoughts worth putting out there.
For those of you who may not know me, hi.
I’m a mother of 3.
Wife to a worship pastor.
And a family medicine physician.
There are a lot of valid feelings on both sides of the buzz about the changes to NY law regarding abortion. Feelings are always valid. Unfortunately, information is not always true.
These are some things that I believe we should take to heart regarding any “hot button” topics including this – especially when we as followers of Christ represent the church at large.
- Issues like the NY abortion law cannot be appropriately addressed by a meme. Or even a few memes. Or blurbs from celebrities. Doing so can oversimplify an EXTREMELY complicated issue. Oversimplifying leads to misunderstanding. This often leads people to jump on a bandwagon of misdirected and sometimes detrimental passion. Instead, we should strive to stand for a truly personal decision based on facts and informed conviction. Remember there is propaganda on both sides of political issues. And neither side is ever 100% accurate.
- Be a truth seeker. Truth seeking is NOT reading opinions from only one side of an obviously divided line. It is also not reading opinions from only the EXTREME sides of the spectrum. It’s researching, educating yourself, and engaging in dialogue.
- Before broadcasting your opinions or anger, do your homework. Read the actual laws, look at facts, and, yes, read stories of those affected on both sides. These issues are always more complicated than a news story will make it seem…especially on issues of medicine. There are professionals who spend YEARS in fields like neonatal hospice. Yes you read that right. Neonatal hospice. And they still don’t claim to understand all the practical or moral implications on issues like these. If they don’t, we can’t claim to either. I’ve seen so much misinformation on social media over the past few days based on under-researched opinions or anecdotes. This doesn’t help anyone.
- Before you demand others take action or you tout how you WOULD take action, do it. Take the action. Your post about how others should adopt a child or even how YOU “would” adopt is worthless. (Don’t get mad yet.) There are over 8,000 children currently in DHS custody- JUST IN THE STATE OF OKLAHOMA. Have you adopted one? If not, either do it or stop posting about how you “would” or “could” help. “Faith without works is dead.” Get mad at James, not me.
- Gentle as doves, wise as serpents. Not bulls in china cabinets. I’m a “guns-a-blazing” kind of person. But, Jesus turned over tables once (that we know of). ONCE. Being ill-informed, making blanket statements, saying “I would” or “I would never” is rarely gentle or wise. You don’t get to pick and choose virtues. For those of you who preach or espouse grace and acceptance, be mindful how you portray your opinions about hot-button issues. The same people who struggle with the pain, regret, and hurt of having to walk through a situation like these are the same ones who may now be afraid to approach you for help because they’re afraid of your judgment or harsh words.
I’m not going to post my opinion about this specific issue or law here. If you know me and truly want my thoughts, you’ll know how to find me.
If you want to take action for foster and adoption care or support organizations that do, here are some of my favorites for your consideration.
Your words matter. What you say, whether informed or ill-informed, impacts those around you. Before making a comment on such a divisive issue, make sure your information is correct, your mind is engaged, and your heart is full of love.