This past Wednesday night, I had the opportunity to speak at the Legacy Church in Princeton, TX, for a youth event that tied into the worldwide “See You at the Pole” gathering. The kids sang passionately, and listened intently as I attempted to inspire and encourage. But, the surprise that awaited me that evening was amazing. Before service started, the pastor leaned in to whisper, “There is a family here with a baby who was born without arms or legs. Would be willing to stay afterwards to meet with them?” In that type of situation, my response is always, “Try and stop me!”
It is my pleasure to introduce you all to Stetson. Stetson is eight months old, and is a happy, bright-eyed boy who happens to have no arms or legs. His parents were told of his diagnosis early on in the pregnancy, and as is the norm in the medical community, they were strongly counseled to abort this precious life. His parents, however, knew that Stetson was a blessing no matter the shape of his body, and after having to change medical providers, Stetson has been given every opportunity available for his success. His parents say that he can hold his own bottle, put his pacifier in his mouth, and that daily, he continues to surprise them with what he can do.
The question we must deal with as a society is this: is Stetson’s life worth living? We live in a world that terminates life at the first sign of trouble. The treatment for an adverse diagnosis in a pregnancy is abortion. At least, it is the first treatment suggested. My parents did not know of my lack of limbs before I was born. They have said before and continue to profess that had they known, I still would have been born. Abortion was not an option for them, nor is it for my family. However, in today’s world, a baby like me…like Stetson…has a very small chance of making it past the first sonogram. Parents-to-be are listening to the advice of supposed experts both in and out of the medical community saying that they would be better off (and so would the baby) if they would abort. I’m living proof that the advice provided in those situations is DEAD WRONG.
Simply put, we cannot know the life that will be led based on a sonogram screen or any other test conducted. Life is an adventure, and while my adventure may not look like yours, it is no less valuable.
I praise God for Stetson and his parents.
I praise God for my own parents.
I praise God for my life.
And I cannot wait to see the amazing man Stetson becomes all due to a choice for life.