Tag Archives: miscarriage
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Women’s Thursday: A Majority of the Human Race is Never Born

28 Feb

A Majority of the Human Race is Never Born

 

Writing about abortion, I have been running into statistics like those expressed in this chart about the miscarriage rate.  As you can see, it is estimated that 75% of pregnancies spontaneously abort before the mother knows she is pregnant.

Beyond that, be careful with interpretation.  The next statistic means that 10% of the 25% of pregnancies that survive the first few days will then go on to spontaneously abort in the next period.  Then 5% of the pregnancies that have survived the first two periods will spontaneously abort in the next one . . . and so on.

If we read that incorrectly and assume that 10% of the original pregnancies will spontaneously abort in the next period, then 5% of the original pregnancies in the next period after that, we end up with a chart that seems to imply that almost 100% of all pregnancies spontaneously abort.  Added to our 20-25% intentional abortion rate, that would make a birth rate of, say, 0%!!!

Now, for those of us who regard a fertilized egg as possessing an eternal soul from the moment of conception, there is a staggering thought here.

Take just a moment to contemplate that far more than half of the human race never gets to the birth process.

We pretty universally agree that those who have a soul and never reach the age of accountability go to heaven automatically.

So over half the human race will be in heaven without having ever taken one breath on this planet.  Without having made a choice to follow the God of the Bible.  In fact, He chose for them.

Now, I want us to dare consider another thought.  In the matter of election that can be so controversial, is it possible that God chose for the rest of us, too?

I know some Arminian folks are aghast at this idea.  Choice is very important to them.  They call it “free will.”

But is it as important to God as it sometimes is to us?  We love our choices, but does He see them the same way we do?

Especially the choice to be saved.

We willingly acknowledge that He knows who will be saved in the end.

Could He also have chosen them, chosen for them to come to the part of their life where they get saved?

It’s just a thought . . .

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Downton Abbey as a Morality Play, Part II : O’Brien and Miscarriage!

9 Feb

As anyone who has seen the first season of Downton Abbey knows, Lord Grantham’s wife Cora finally conceives a male heir after his three daughters are already adults, but then loses the baby when she slips on a piece of soap on the floor next to her bathtub.  The soap was purposely planted there by Cora’s maid, Miss O’Brien.  O’Brien thinks Cora is planning to replace her, after overhearing and misunderstanding a conversation about a maid being hired for Cora’s mother-in-law.

How often do we do that?  Hear a few words out of context and think we know the whole story?

But, beyond that, although most of us would never try to cause a pregnant woman to fall, have we ever done something out of equally hateful impulses?  Maybe something from motives so evil that the thought of it sends chills down our spine years or decades later?

I could hardly bear to look at O’Brien when she realizes that her mistress never intended to send her away and, in fact, loves her blindly.  Her mistress has not the slightest suspicion that the soap was intentionally placed in her path.  No one has the slightest idea.  But O’Brien knows.  She knows that she caused a baby’s miscarriage.  She did the equivalent act to taking a woman today and forcing her to have an abortion.

Looking at O’Brien in that moment, I see a desolate woman who has to live with private guilt forever, whether or not she ever confesses to anyone what happened.  Her sin cannot be undone.  It can be forgiven but its effects are permanent.

Even if her mistress had intended to send her away, her response was disproportionate, wasn’t it?  It is the equivalent response to the people today who are fired from a job and return with a weapon to shoot the place up!  Being fired, even wrongly, is not equivalent to being murdered.

But . . . I remembered tonight a time when I was about seven years old and was out in the countryside, at a friend’s slumber party for her birthday.  It was my first slumber party and it was exciting and scary at the same time.

My friend lived on a farm.  And we were having a hayride right after dark.  I only knew my friend at the party, as the other girls were from her school, out in the countryside.

One of the little girls started to fall off the back of the wagon but caught herself.  She struggled to get back on.  In the process, I looked down and realized she had grabbed my hand.  She was hanging off the back of the wagon, gripping my hand.  She struggled for what seemed like forever to right herself, with no success.

What happened next I could never explain if I lived a thousand years.  I got tired of holding onto her hand while she struggled to get back on the wagon.  Not physically tired.  Annoyed.  Tired of this needy stranger holding my hand.  I let go.

She plunged underneath the wagon.  We did not run her over, but she was injured.  She didn’t break anything, but we didn’t know that for sure until she had been taken to the doctor.

No one ever found out why she fell.  She didn’t remember holding my hand, I am sure.  I carried a cold edge of guilt over that act for many years.  In fact, I don’t remember ever telling anyone about it, until now.

We can make all kinds of excuses for me.  I was only seven.  I didn’t know she would fall.  I didn’t intend for anything bad to happen but just wanted to get her to stop holding on to me.  And she wasn’t really hurt badly after all.

Except . . . I know that in my heart lurked that same cold impulse that animated O’Brien when she set out to get revenge.  I didn’t care one toss for this girl.  She was an annoyance to me and I got rid of the annoyance, like swatting a bug.

I didn’t mean for her to fall, but if she had been crushed and killed beneath the wheels of the haywagon, it would still have been due to my cold, sinful heart.

You see, that is our guilty little secret.  In the hearts of all of us lurk those moments when we don’t really care about the wellbeing of others.  And, when we are like that, we are not much better off than Miss O’Brien.

That is the brilliance of Downton Abbey.  There are some true villains there.  O’Brien is usually one of them.  But when we look deeply at them, we realize the villainy of our own hearts.

And those of us who are Christians humbly bow and thank Jesus for coming to redeem our villainous hearts.

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