|By David Corral Gadea (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0-es|
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/es/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons
Thanks so much for visiting! If you are not a regular reader of mine, you may wish to know that I tend not to mince words about things that are important. If you are readily offended by frankness, you may prefer to click off. In either case, thanks for stopping by; you are welcome here! )
I thought a lot today about what I would write on this, the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Truth be told, it just depresses me and words are reticent to come. I must drag them along, convincing them to stick to the page. I thought of the numbers dead -- those for whom I will stand in candlelit vigil tonight. I thought of my morning spent working with children with Down Syndrome, blindness, and orthodpedic impairment -- survivors of the womb. I thought of so many moments spent basking in the lifejoy of those survivors. Ultimately, though, the tragedy goes so much deeper than a court decision. It begins earlier, while abortion lies in wait. It begins when boys and girls are little and someone forgets to tell them things. Or maybe, no one near them knew these things for the telling.
In a youth culture rife with talk of "hooking up" and where marriage seems so far on the horizon that it is hardly a thought...in a society where men curse in front of women and children, and worse...and in a time when sex is for deciding whether you might want to form an emotional connection...so much needs to be said.
Christians are often accused of being "preachy" and "judgmental." I suppose that may be true, sometimes. What I really think, though, is that we just have so much hope that people might have joy and love and safety, and we look around us and see a reality far from that truth...both in our ranks and outside of them. I think the holding of that hope is probably true of everyone, Christian and non-Christian.
I cannot raise the world; none of us can, and if one of us could, I would probably not be the best candidate. If it was my job though, if you were my daughter -- if you were my son, this is what I would say to you:
|By Frank Vincentz (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)|
or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons
You have immeasurable worth. You are a daughter of God, entrusted with the sacred task of bearing life. There is nothing greater. There are many things that people can accomplish in life, but to knit life in your very being, in your womb...well that is something mystical and holy. It is the most earthy, natural thing --and yet, it transcends this earthly life.
If you are blessed to do this thing, to create life, you will not bear one baby...you will bear generations. Your mothering will touch one who will hold others in her arms and pass to them your genes and your memories and your wisdom, -- and your fears and mistakes too.
Those memories, those thoughts and beliefs and emotions and experiences that will be transmitted, ...you are forming them now. You are living what you will bequeath to generations. You are mothering generations. You are doing this thing --this mothering of generations -- before you have even begun.
Here is what I want you, your daughters, and the daughters of your sons and daughters, to know:
* You are worth more than a "hook-up". You may think that sex doesn't mean anything --that it doesn't reach into your soul and touch you there and stay with you for better or for worse, but if you think this, you are wrong. Sex has been linking people together and sealing bonds (good and bad) for thousands of years --long before this culture decided that television sitcoms knew more than ancient wisdom could convey. It has also, for just as long, been tearing people apart inside and shattering their self worth when it has been misused. You have infinite worth. You are worth more than to be used solely for anyone's entertainment.
* You are worth investing time and commitment in. You are worth being there for. You are worth holding tight when your world is cracking and when you are filled with dread and fear. You are worth standing by when standing by isn't fun. You are worth protecting and shielding from harm. You are worth providing for. You are worth fidelity and strength.
|By Royal Photographers W & D Downey (Scan)|
[Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
* You can tell me all about your rights. You can tell me all about your freedom and empowerment and that you can do anything that you want to with your body. And, I suppose that you are right...you can. But I am telling you that if choosing the way of progressive culture -- with its minimizing of the gravity of sex -- worked for people and brought security and safety and joy, then we would not be swimming in a cultural sea of brokenness and pain. If the kind of men who make lifelong families and raise secure happy children with fulfilled and well-loved wives were the same kind of men who seek easy sex without commitment, then we wouldn't have so many fatherless children and women drowning in loss and pain.
* Marriage isn't a cake walk. It is immensely wonderful; it is a blessed state...but it takes some doing. It takes strength to hold tight to a woman and pass others by. It takes fortitude to stand by a family in a life filled with challenges. The type of man who takes the easy route into your pants will take the easy route outside of the circle of your trust. He is not a Knight. You are worth a Knight.
* Birth control is everywhere. It is handed out like candy. In case they didn't tell you though, it is not foolproof. Sometimes it doesn't work. So, when you have sex, you are making a choice. You are making a choice to invite life into your womb. You are making the choice to embark on the possible creation of a child. Children need homes with mothers and fathers and food and clothing and safety and happiness. If you are choosing to engage in the potential creation of a child before you can provide those things, then you are being damned selfish. Your children are worth more than that.
|By Bình Giang (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons|
* You are made in the image of God. If you are called to marriage, rather than the single life, then you are called to be as Christ to the Church. It's a tall order.
* You hold tremendous power. You have physical strength to harm a woman, or enfold her in safety. You have the emotional strength to protect a child from the pain of the world, or to inflict that pain, instead. You must choose how you will use that power, because you will use it.
* Your approval is one of the most potent things that you possess. You can communicate to a woman that she has value that can be used bless the world, or you can communicate to a woman that she is only good enough to use.
* There are plenty of men out there who have taken the easy route in life. The easy route leads nowhere special. That's why it's easy.
* If you are called to marriage, you will have a wife and, if God wills it, children to support. The financial security that you provide will mean the difference between safety and danger for them. It will mean protection from a life of stress, fear, and insecurity. So get up off your rear end and start preparing.
* There are piles and piles of men in their twenties these days who know more about video games than they do about adulthood and who would be unprepared to support a woman if one were to drop in their laps. You will not be that man. Relationships have a natural course. Once love is established and the surety of commitment is in place, it's time to get married. Don't be the putz who is unprepared to make it happen.
|By Tata kurliana (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0|
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
* Generations from now, a man will hold a baby in his arms that is your great, great grandchild. He will whisper to that baby words that he hears on the wind...words that were bequeathed by you to your son and your son's sons. They will be words that speak of choices that you made, vows that you kept, and honor that you lived. That honor will be written upon the genes and sinews and spirit of that babe, and that babe in arms--he will be the father of generations. You are, this very day, raising generations -- even before you have begun. Do them proud.
Pax Christi dear ones,
Choose the high road. You are worth it. God is worth it. Generations to come are worth it.
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