I was praying for my child last night. Though she is yet to be born, I have learned, over time, to become more and more acutely aware that there is an actual human being, no matter how young, that is created and loved by God forming in my wife’s womb. An individual, marked by features of her own, with personality traits, ideas and desires, that is forming in my wife’s belly. As I prayed for her and my wife last night, I quoted Ephesians 1, seemingly out of nowhere. “Oh God, before the foundations of the world, you know her” (Ephesians 1:4). And I prayed that he might know her even now in the truest sense, with the intimate foreknowledge that Paul talks about in Ephesians 1:4–one that leads to her salvation. A foreknowledge that was in his mind in eternity past, to save her and bring her to himself in and through Christ Jesus, and to present her blameless to himself at the end of the ages (Ephesians 1:4b). Man, I want that! I pray that already in his eternal and wise mind, he would see her in Christ from eternity past to now as she develops in my wife’s womb.
As I prayed, however, I realized that God loves this child infinitely more than I could ever love her. He knows her perfectly and infinitely, without limit. And while my wife and I labor over what to name her, he already knows the name she will have. God already knows the day she will be born. God knows every hair that is yet to grow on her head. And he knows the day that she will die. Even as I feel like I already know her, I do not know her and love her like God knows and loves her.
My child is “only” 23 weeks old, and God lovingly and graciously hit me last night with this insight into his love and foreknowledge for her. And yet, as I reflect on this eternal and perfect love, my wife and I realize that in Houston, there are abortion hearings that debate the time at which abortion is right, and whether or not a baby is truly a human or just an unborn fetus; and as we watch these events unfold, my wife and I weep at the thought that any man or woman would abort any baby at any time. What a travesty. God has known our precious child from eternity past even until now, and our city debates whether she is an actual human until 20 or 24 weeks. What a shallow and self-centered mindset we as humans have. We don’t have the infinite knowledge of each and every child that is murdered at the hands of men every day–and yet God knows them from eternity past. What’s more is that God knows them as real people. Individuals, crafted in his own image, made and prepared for his own glory. It deeply saddens me that any parent would look at their child with the mindset that a matter of weeks could decide their baby’s humanness.
But as I pray for my child even yet to be named, I realize God’s infinite and eternal love and foreknowledge for her, and I am so pleased and comforted. Because though we try to decide her worth, God has already decided it, and has decided that she truly is worthy of appreciation, love, and recognition.