I serve the congregation of First Baptist Church in Farmersville, TX. Farmersville sits at the northern shores of Lake Lavon. Earlier this week, a maintenance crew in the area found beside a dirty pond near the lake the body of a six-year-old special needs boy. He was significantly decomposed. His body showed evidence that he had been fed with a feeding tube for some period of time. Forensic examiners found no obvious evidence of trauma. Apparently, he died and then somebody just dumped him out at the lake (or dumped him out and left him there to die).
Learn more about the story here.
Dr. Russell Moore has recently reminded us that our treatment of a dead body says something about our attitude toward that body. I agree in part and disagree in part with Dr. Moore (grist for the future blogging mill?), but he is absolutely correct in noting that the treatment of dead bodies is loaded with significance.
To throw away the body of a child is to reveal one's heart in an incontrovertible way. To whoever dumped that body, that child was about as valuable as a broken-down washing machine. Each year, of course, millions of babies' bodies are thrown away into the trash, and the collective statement made by that fact is deafening and eloquent.
By the way, not only does our treatment of throw-away babies say something about us, but the something that it says about us it further says to God. Cain's blood cried out to God from the ground. From the medical incinerators and landfills and from a stagnant pond near Lake Lavon, a message rises to God that drowns out our formulaic prayers at official functions and our self-indulgent appeals to Heaven for materialistic largesse. Indeed, we ought to be ashamed, but we also ought to be fearful.