Monday, January 19, 2009

Abortion and Racism

Yesterday the the sermon was entitled "Abortion and Racism: How Both Are Blasphemous."  It was little bit of a jolt to read such a straightforward title on the front of the bulletin.  Not that I disagree with the idea, but it had been quite some time since I'd heard these topics spoken on plainly "from the pulpit."  

That's what our pastor did.  He spoke plainly, first referencing Psalms 139:13-18
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.
When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
How precious to me are you thoughts, O God! 
How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand.
When I awake, I am still with you.
Our pastor described the kinds of abortions we have legalized in our country, presented arguments of "choice" and their counter-arguments.  Some people listening gasped as he proceeded, one or two left the room (for reasons I do not know), but all were engaged and listening.  

I was glad to be hearing the topic of abortion and the principles of life and death spoken about in church.  I'm tired of it being a part of political debates.  It is not a political issue and will not be solved through politics.  It is an issue that is swayed by our fundamental beliefs about who a person is.  Those fundamental beliefs are a matter of faith, of religion, of spirituality.  It is not something our government can decided for us, though they may try to tell us what to think.  And, I could certainly be wrong here, but I do not think that you are accountable for what your political leaders do.  Let them stand in their own decisions.  Concern yourself with the choices you have made.  There is more than enough of yourself to worry about.  You have some loving to do.

The second part of the sermon was begun with the scripture Revelation 5:9-10

You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation.
You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.

After this, Sam read a letter Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote in response to a few white pastors who were requesting that King slow down a little and be more patient.  King's letter methodically went through the way life was for him everyday and the world that his children were beginning to see, poisoned with ignorance and hate.  He told those men that if they had been through all he had, they would never be so patient.  

I am going to speak plainly now.  I struggle with prejudices every day.  I see parents of my students and I assume I know what they are going through.  I judge a coworker, believing he works here only because he cannot get a job elsewhere.  I do a double take when I see a cashier at Wal-Mart who is white, well-dressed, and articulate.  I am a racist.  Do I want to be?  No.  Do I feel like I am less prejudiced than some others in this country?  Yes.  But I have my assumptions and biases, each day a "preconceived judgement or opinion" (  

The matter of abortion does not concern me much right now.  I feel sure in its horrors and I know where I stand.  I value life from conception to death.  Racism is the matter I find myself thinking on more.  I may say "I value life from conception to death," but do I value every life from conception to death?  Do I act as though every person I meet is worth the same?  Because they are.  Each knitted in the womb, a wonderful creation with days ordained and a God killed for them.  ...God so loved the world...

No comments:

Post a Comment