Friday, March 15, 2013

A Lavish Act of Generosity

By Belinda

Lent, a season of fasting, reflection, preparation and mourning, precedes Holy week; the week leading up to Easter morning--that glorious dawn when the sacrifice of a son breaks the power of hell and offers the free gift of grace to the world.

Last Sunday Paul and I sat in a pew at Yorkminster Citadel Salvation Army Church in Toronto and learned of a different way of celebrating Lent: Forty Acts of Generosity

It was wonderful to learn about; and although it's too late for this year; next year that's the way I want to celebrate Lent. But that's not what this blog post is about.

We were at the church to bear witness to an act of generosity I cannot begin to imagine. One young couple, who found themselves in spite of birth control of the most final kind; unexpectedly (and miraculously) parents-to-be; at a time and stage in their lives when they hadn't planned on a baby. But instead of ending that life in abortion, as some might have done, they felt that this baby wasn't theirs, but that they were having this baby for someone else, thereby opening themselves up to a journey of a kind that only God has ever experienced: Love, heartrending sacrifice, and joy in giving a costly gift.

Through an online adoption website, they found the couple whose baby this was; a couple whose hearts were also so open and generous that they wanted an open adoption, where the birth parents and extended family, would always be part of their child's life. And so it came to be that on this special Sunday in Lent, two couples stood, dedicating this baby; David Joseph Moore; to the Lord.

 Sherry and Jason found Emily and Mike Moore, our friends, Susan and Ron Stewart's, daughter and son-in-law, members at Yorkminster, who were longing for a child.

These photos tell the story better than any words of mine could.








 The colours of the flag represent Goodness; Purity and Love!
Major Heather Ballantine with David Joseph, and below, Emily tells the whole wonderful story.

To God be the glory and may his blessing be upon every member of David Joseph's large and wonderful family.

11 comments:

Marilyni said...

What a heartening story! I am warmed by it this morning. Thanks for sharing it in words and pictures. What a fortunate child! And parents. And group of witnesses to it.

Belinda said...

Amen sister! Not easy for ANYONE, but worth it all? Oh yes!

Constance Ballantine Knighton said...

Brilliant. I have been following this story from afar...since Major Heather is my sister-in-law and she was so full of the blessing of this day. Major Len is my brother. I believe the men wept their hearts out. How wonderful is that! thank you for these pictures.

Dave Hingsburger said...

astonishing

Belinda said...

Dave, "Astonishing" says it all.

Belinda said...

Constance, what a blessing to be on the periphery of such a journey. Yes, there was weeping. This hasn't been easy for any of the four parents most intimately involved.

Anonymous said...

Gosh Belinda. I must be an odd sock. I didn't get a "warm" feeling from this. God doesn't make mistakes. I can't help feel that this just isn't "quite right". Yes - there is a lot of love and a lot of best wishes. Yet it feels like a mission of convenience covered in a spiritual blanket. I will have to think more on it. I too find it astonishing - but for other reasons.

Belinda said...

Anonymous, it definitely has been an unconventional journey. But it has brought great joy to a couple longing for a child and a secure home where he is treasured for David Joseph. And he will always know his birth parents loved him enough to give him up when they were not at a time in their lives when they would choose to have another child.

I think that there are many more such stories that we never hear about so publicly and maybe if we did, the meaning of "parenthood" or all kinds of relationships would be more flexible.

Thanks for being so honest about your feelings about it though. It isn't the norm that is for sure and both couples were very brave to embark on this journey.

Susan said...

Dear Anon. I understand your struggle with this... it's pretty weird! And as I've said from the beginning, it's the messiest way possible to have a baby! But if you'd been in on it from the very inception, and as close to the centre of it all as I have been, I've no doubt you would understand how very close this is to the very heart of God.

You're right. God does not make mistakes. And he didn't make one this time either. The birth parents had a tough choice and they chose life. I have not only met them, but I'm getting to know them quite well (we're family now, after all) and I have nothing but respect for them. In fact, their courage, fueled by their love for this child, awes me. They made a very tough decision... This was not a decision of convenience. In fact it was about as far from "convenient" as you could possibly get.

It's a very unconventional way to have a child, that's for sure. So I can understand the need for some time and some information to be able to wrestle it all through. And we're only half way through the story. It remains to be seen what all the repercussions of this real-life drama will be, but from all indications, it looks like it will have the glory of God all over it.

It's interesting to note that there are four sets of grandparents, and though we all processed it in different ways and according to our own unique schedules, we have all ended up at exactly the same place... with our blessing.

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