One of the latest brainstorms in pediatricÂ medicine is the catch phrase, “Back to Sleep.” It is designed to remind parents that the preferred method of putting your infant child to sleep is by lying the child on the back instead of placing them face down. This is supposed to decrease the likelihood of sudden infant death syndrome.
I say bah, humbug. The cause of sudden infant death syndrome is unknown. Therefore, the cure is also unknown. Is the cause suffocation or choking? Is it anoxia or heart failure? You can’t have a cure if you haven’t isolated the cause. ButÂ writing a policyÂ makes physicians, nurses, and other medical providersÂ feel good so let’s all do something even if it’s absolutely unhelpful.
As a follower of Christ, I am especially concerned about my brothers and sisters of faith that fall into this sort of thinking. The nursery at the church I attend even cautions against laying a child face down. Is the length of my life or the life of my infant child really determined by the position I place them in when going to sleep? How dreadful our faith.
Consider Psalm 139:13-16 13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, 16 your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.