According to Merriam-Webster an orphan is defined as follows....
1. a child who has lost both parents through death, or, less commonly, one parent.
2. a young animal that has been deserted by or has lost its mother.
3. a person or thing that is without protective affiliation, sponsorship, etc.
4. not authorized, supported, or funded; not part of a system; isolated; abandoned
An orphan is no longer defined as history's past has defined it. We used to picture a child with loving parents dying in some kind of tragic accident and leaving their child without a guardian. Little Orphan Annie comes to mind doesn't it. But in a world with 147 millions orphans the realty is that the term "orphan" has been redefined to include children who have parents that are alive and well. Parents who have chosen to walk away. And as I reflect on this I am reminded of the three little lives living in my home, under my care that have a mother and a father alive and well out in the world. So I can correctly associate them with definition 3 and 4 of the word orphan. This is where God convicted my heart. Just as I thought that the most hopeless in the world....the true "least of these" has been the orphaned child....hopeless and co-dependent for survival I am reminded of another orphan that fits this definition. An unborn child. Essentially they are the same as the three in my home. Unwanted....ready to be thrown away at any given opportunity....seen as the ultimate burden. Where are their warriors? Where are their defenders? Not to say that there aren't people out there....because there are. But I am not one of them. I have never stood outside an abortion clinic and begged a woman to choose life. And the sad part is that you probably haven't either. Where is the disconnect? We all post statuses declaring life and have pro-life bumper stickers or pens but somehow that's where it ends. With words. Well I can't be that person anymore. I can't be the naive German walking in front of the concentration camps with my nose plugged because the horrible smell of what I am told is burning trash is unbearable to breath. I will acknowledge that there is a holocaust going on. Innocent PEOPLE are dying. And I will take a stand....a physical stand...outside a clinic...to pray, plead and beg for their lives to be spared. They are orphaned children without protective affiliation or support...isolated and abandoned by those chosen to love them. How CAN we sit by and do nothing?! I know that because of the legality of abortion that I can't force a woman to choose life. All I can do is share my life and my hope with her and pray a seed is planted. But at least we will be able to say we spoke up....we shouted out....we took a stand and we declared "LIFE IS SACRED". Because let me tell you .....if my sister in law can march down to the clinic that took the life of her child and stare her sin and shame in the face and plead, beg and pray...how can we not?! It's not just tissue, it's not just a blob of cells....it's a person. A life.
It's a daughter...a grand-daughter, a niece, a cousin and a child of God. If that one life isn't worth me spending my Saturday morning outside a cold, foreign building being cussed out and spit on then I need to re-evaluate my relationship with Jesus. For it was His hand that formed them....His hand that knew them...and my job to remember them.
-For Mercy and Goodness....my two nieces in heaven.