Thursday, December 14, 2006

Isaiah 7:1-9; Psalm 37:1-18; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12; Luke 22:1-13

As a new parent, I feel I am surrounded by a myriad of potentially life-altering decisions almost every day. When my son was two months old, I was faced with the decision about whether or not to vaccinate on the strict American Academy of Pediatrics schedule. This schedule, by the way, has small babies receiving as many as twenty shots during their first year of life. Quite frankly the schedule terrified me. The thought of injecting so many chemicals into my small child hung over me like a bad omen that I couldn’t shake. In addition, there has been so much attention in the media about the possibility of links between vaccinations and other harmful diseases. Whom can I trust? It seemed as if the government publications and pediatricians are on the payroll of the pharmaceutical companies. I felt that I didn’t know what to do and didn’t know where to turn for an unbiased opinion.

I found myself fretting over the decision. Worrying day and night about what was the right thing to do. Do I vaccinate and protect my baby from a handful of diseases, many of which are almost extinct? Do I not vaccinate and forever worry about his coming into contact with a potentially deadly disease? My husband, my mother, my best friend, and pretty much anyone who would listen can all attest to the range of emotions that I struggled with. What I finally did was pray.

I put my trust in the Lord and prayed that he would protect my son and enable him to “dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.” Since those early prayers I feel that God led me to the decision to vaccinate on a delayed schedule. Our son has received all his vaccinations, but he receives one per month, instead of four at a time every few months. Our pediatrician was not thrilled about the additional office visits and paperwork, but I persevered because I knew in my heart that it was the right thing to do.

Now I sleep much better at night knowing that my son is protected and that we are all enjoying great peace. Amen.

- Miriam Turner

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