I think everyone struggles with being judgmental. How can we not? We are constantly making judgment calls in every facet of our lives. What we wear, what we eat, how we spend our time, etc. Socks with sandals? Well, in my opinion that would be a fashion no-no, but do I look down on people that wear socks with sandals? No. Can I share my opinion without offending those that don’t believe the way I do, or does that just make me judgmental? What about if it is a family member I care about, would they understand that my intentions are pure and I’m not trying to insult them by trying to persuade them to see things the way I do?*
I think it is delicate to have conversations concerning pro-life or many other topics with people that don’t think like you. It is hard with people you don’t know because they may assume the worst of you based on a few sentences. They may feel you are questioning their intelligence or their upbringing. It is also difficult with people you know well, because they may think you don’t even care about their friendship to be disagreeing with them in such a way. It seems like sooner or later if you take the position of a fundamental truth like life begins at conception or abortion is wrong, you will wind up being called judgmental.
Judgmental? Because I believe in a difference between right and wrong, and don’t buy into the prevalent notion that what’s right is different for each person? Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Light, and I have a lot of confidence in that Truth. Charles Spurgeon a Baptist preacher said, “The truth is like a lion; you don’t have to defend it. Let it loose; it will defend itself.” This works for those that seek to inform their conscience, because if you look you can see how science (not just morals) backs up the truth about this issue.
Advances in technology provide ultrasounds; we see life in the womb and it is unmistakably human. At 12 weeks a fetus can kick, turn over, make a fist open its mouth and press its lips together. It can also feel pain.
We now know how at conception a sperm and an egg join to form a zygote, with its own unique DNA, the beginning of an unrepeatable individual. Science also backs up how bad abortion is for the women that obtain them, especially psychologically. Women who have abortions are 81% more likely to experience subsequent mental health problems according to this 2011 study by Britain’s Royal College of Psychiatrists. For more on that study http://afterabortion.org/2011/most-studies-show-abortion-linked-to-increased-mental-health-problems/
Or when you say judgmental do you mean that I believe one day I will stand before a Judge? One day I will be judged not just by my actions, but my inactions too. By virtue of our baptism we are called to evangelize or spread the message of Jesus Christ. So despite how it sometimes gets uncomfortable, I am compelled to try to share what I believe has been revealed as Truth (to be clear, not a personal revelation). We have the God given right to do good or to sin. If you choose sin, but were never really told the truth, because I was too cowardly to stand up against the culture and tell you the truth about birth control and abortion, well that is on me then isn’t it?
You may judge me as you like, and you may feel that I am judging you, but I am not. What I am trying to do is help you to examine your options and your actions, because if you sincerely seek the truth I feel like you will find it in the Church’s teachings. And God will be the judge; so don’t fool yourself because you won’t fool Him. For a God of love He is, but also one of justice. And if you look at the hefty price that Jesus had to pay to open heaven, you have to know that not everyone is going to enter heaven so easily. His love and mercy allow for imperfection, but those imperfections will need to be removed before you enter His Divine Presence (you can call it purgatory if you want). So mark me ignorant, weird, a little too religious, or judgmental. But remember we live “in” the world, but are not “of” the world.
The notion of the fear of the Lord is really lost on a lot of people. I’ve noticed some nonbelievers talk like we imagined God out of a need for reassurance. Oh that’s convenient, you sleep better at night knowing God is in control. When really I’m thinking: oh that’s convenient that you are rich and have deluded yourself into thinking there is no God; so you don’t have to be held accountable. You don’t have to take care of your fellow man or reign in your desires. When Jesus says, I am the Way, follow me, NEWSFLASH he doesn’t walk down Easy Street, he walks up a hill to a cross! We don’t believe because it’s some feel good philosophy. It is actually a constant struggle because Jesus set the bar HIGH. We have to die to ourselves to rise with Him. During Lent especially, we try to grasp this aspect of holiness. But it is hard because we love ourselves.
The pro-choice camp says I’m pushing my morals on them. Can’t I accurately say they are pushing their morals on me? They may not be forcing me to get an abortion, but they are still forcing me to support abortion through the over half billion dollars in federal funding that Planned Parenthood receives via my tax support annually. I don’t want to sound harsh, but wouldn’t a more proper representation be that the opposition wants to promote an absence of morals? It is very one sided. To paraphrase GK Chesterton, when we eliminate the difference between right and wrong the devil wins. The founders of our country had a common foundation of happiness through virtue. Call it mainstream or secular society, but the morals have been removed and pleasure drives our dear free market. What perhaps started at the root of lust has grown into the graver sins of greed and pride feeding on the promotion of lust.
Be brave, be bold, the Truth must be told. It is not like what I see on home décor and t-shirts at Target “Do what you love” “Do what makes you happy.” Umm, no. Pleasure ends the moment the thing giving you pleasure ends. Joy comes with the fulfillment of doing something for the greater good, giving of yourself to benefit someone else. So yes the central theme of the Gospel is love, but when you love someone you try to get them to heaven. Do we even know what love and happiness are anymore? The words are thrown around so much that they have become warped. Sacrificial love would be more accurate to describe the Gospel. Jesus’ mission wasn’t just about love though, but about truth too (woman at the well is coming to mind). He came not just to atone for our sins, but to establish a universal church that will proclaim and protect the truth. So, my hope is that we can somehow let our love outshine that perception of judgment so Jesus can “lead all souls to heaven, especially those most in need of [His] mercy.”
*Socks and sandals fashion faux pas does not apply to people over 60 (Love you Mom and Dad! ; )