A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words


While a picture is worth a thousand words, some pictures are not worth the paper they’re printed on. For instance: a picture of an aborted fetus drenched in blood. Is that really necessary?


There is already a lot of trash on TV. A lot of trash in magazines. Some pictures leave us cold. Others get us all worked up and annoyed, even offended. To show a picture of a cute little baby warms people’s hearts, but if that baby has been aborted, and you can see a tiny arm and leg in a pool of blood, that will bring up different emotions. And it’s even worse to see something like that on a huge truck driving around town.


Is that really necessary? Just to shock people. It makes me SICK to see those pictures. There is no more sense of appropriateness. There is no more restraint in what people will show in public these days. Pushing their views on others. Some pictures should NEVER be shown. After all, they are scary, gross, offensive, inappropriate, and absolutely FALSE. That is NOT what happens to aborted babies, or should we say, tissue. Or maybe it does, but who cares?


Now, many people question whether or not an abortion is ending the life of a human being or just removing some tissue that had the “potential” of becoming a human being. I don’t want to get into a discussion here, because you can argue back and forth and never come to a conclusion. Instead, just look at some pictures. Offensive pictures of aborted babies. “I’ll pass”, you say. Ugly nasty pictures with bloody details are not very popular. We don’t need R-rated graphics to change our minds. That is true. But maybe they will change our HEARTS!


That reminds me of Jesus. He knew that changing our minds only works if we have a change of heart. Now, Jesus was also quite offensive. He was radical. True, He was popular, but only with a group of outcasts. He spoke the truth in love, but most people would rather hear beautiful lies. “Don’t rock the boat, Jesus.” That’s what we would have advised. But He rocked, and He died. And He came back to life. Because He is THE Life. And the Way. And the Truth. (John 14:6).


Now, what am I getting at? Simply put, truth is truth, whether or not anyone believes it. We can TALK about truth. We can argue back and forth. Or we can look at some pictures, let our hearts be touched, and maybe, just maybe, begin to understand what atrocities are being committed all over the world.


CCBR (Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform) came to our church to present a talk, and to show pictures. Offensive pictures. Is this necessary? Is this even making any difference? I believe we are done with holding up banners, with trying to talk to people, with trying to convince them of “our position”. What people need is the truth, not our opinion. So, instead of sharing OUR wisdom and thoughts with them, why not use a “neutral” picture? Often, the truth is uncomfortable. Truth hurts. Because we would rather ignore it and live our comfortable lives.


I would strongly encourage you to invite CCBR to your church or organization. Learn about their fight. Not because they are so great. Not even because you want to support a “good cause”. Much more, invite them so that, perhaps, you might slowly experience a change of heart. Perhaps you are already appalled that so many children’s lives are taken before they are even born. But what do you DO about it? Here is one important way to get involved: send a prayer heaven-ward! But remember, this is only ONE way. Get creative. Help with making abortion a thing of the past.


Of course, you can argue that it will NEVER come to that. True. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t seek change. For instance, without people getting involved, we might still live in a world where slavery and child labour are a “normal” part of life. Ora et labora, said the monks. Pray and Work. And may God bless you.

Michael Welbers (2007)