Ling was just 11 years old when the Emperor’s messenger rode into his village one hot summer day.
All the people were summoned to the village square to hear the Emperor’s proclamation.
Before his parents left for the village square, Ling wondered what the announcement would be – was there a war? Did the Emperor have a new wife? Would the Emperor visit Ling’s village? He would have to wait for their return to find out – for now he would have to be patient.
When Ling’s parents returned from the village square he learned that he would leave on his very first trip away from home the next day. All the boys from 10 to 15 years old were invited to the Emperor’s palace to participate in the selection of the Emperor’s successor, and Ling’s parents thought it would be a good experience for him.
Because the Emperor of China had no children that could succeed him after his death, he needed to select a successor. And if he died without a successor, rival factions would tear the empire apart in war if a successor to the Emperor was not named before his death.
If he chose poorly, the peace and prosperity that the people of his empire enjoyed would quickly become a thing of the past.
But how would he find the right person to become the next leader of the Chinese Empire?
Late one night the answer came to him – and that’s when the messengers were dispatched to all the villages of the empire, summoning children from across the land to come to the palace.
From these children the next emperor would be chosen after a year long evaluation of all the children. The test was surprisingly simple but far more difficult than any could imagine.
Each child was given a seed – just one seed was placed in their hands. They would take the seed home to their villages, plant the it in a pot and nurture it.
When they returned one year later, the Emperor would judge their efforts and choose his successor.
After hearing the instructions, and receiving a seed, Ling returned to his village where his mother helped him choose a pot and plant the seed.
Every day for the next year, Ling nurtured and watered his pot.
Week after week, the other children would compare their plants – some grew fast and tall, some sprouted into luscious shrubs, and some bloomed beautiful flowers. But Ling’s pot showed no signs of life.
Before long the other boys mocked Ling and his pot of soil – Ling would never be emperor.
But with his mother’s encouragement, Ling never missed watering his pot a single day.
As the time drew nearer to the trip back to the Emperor’s palace, Ling grew more and more was nervous and embarrassed of his pot of plant-less soil – what would the Emperor think of his pot of dirt?
All the other boys had beautiful plants, bushes, and flowers. But Ling had a pot of soil.
There was no way to prove to the Emperor that he diligently watered his pot every day – the Emperor would think he was lazy and indifferent to the opportunity and responsibility he’d been given.
Would the Emperor mock him like the boys of his village had?
Would the Emperor punish Ling?
How could he face the Emperor with a pot of soil while all the other boys displayed their beautiful bushes, trees and flowers?
That’s when his mother looked Ling in the eye and reminded him that for nearly a year he had suffered the shame and abuse of the kids from the village as they mocked and tormented him for his pot of soil while they showed off their growing plants, shrubs, and trees. For nearly a year Ling had resisted the pressure to cheat on the Emperor’s test. She reminded him that it wasn’t the throne of the the empire at stake, but something much more important – his integrity.
That’s when Ling looked his mother in the eye and resolved that in spite of the consequences, the mockery, ridicule, name calling – in spite of all the pressure he felt – he would do the right thing, return to the palace and show the Emperor his barren pot.
The day finally came when the boys returned to the palace and the Emperor began his inspection of the children and their plants.
One by one they proudly presented themselves and their beautiful shrubs, trees, and flowers, each one hoping they would be chosen as the heir to the empire.
As the Emperor neared Ling, fear and shame nearly overwhelmed him, but he stood tall and presented his pot of barren soil.
“What happened here,” asked the Emperor when he looked down at Ling’s pot of soil.
“Even though I watered the pot every day, nothing ever grew.” Ling muttered nervously.
The Emperor grumbled a couple words to himself, moved on, and Ling’s heart sank.
Hours passed as the Emperor evaluated every boy and his plant until his assessment was completed.
The time had come for the Emperor’s successor to be named. He stood before the children and congratulated them on their efforts.
He talked about the importance of the task he had given them – and the importance of the role that one of them would fill.
He explained that the opportunity to become Emperor brings out the best – and worst in men and boys alike, and that some would so desperately want to be chosen that they would do anything to become the next Emperor.
Then he called Ling forward, “He is the one boy that has come to me with nothing but a pot of well watered watered soil. Ling, come here please.”
As Ling made his way to the Emperor the other boys laughed and scoffed under their breath.
The Emperor held Ling’s pot up for all the others to see and their scoffing turned to open laughter and derision.
When their laughter and mockery died down the Emperor continued, “I gave you all a seed to take home and plant in a pot that you would return to me today. The seeds that I gave you were all boiled until they wouldn’t grow.”
“But I see before me today thousands of plants and shrubs, trees and flowers, but only one barren pot. Your flowers and shrubs are little more than beautiful camouflage for the boiled seeds of your ambition and deceit.”
Courage and integrity are required more than boastful claims and proud displays when leading a great empire. Ling, the lone boy with the courage and integrity to return with a barren pot of soil will succeed me as the next Emperor of China.”
Just as courage and integrity are required to lead a great empire, they’re required to serve in elected office as well.
Unfortunately in the same way that Ling’s fellows preferred to disguise their boiled seeds with beautifully potted shrubs, trees and flowers, many of our candidates for the House, Senate, and even the governor’s office have little more to offer than boiled seeds of ambition and deceit when it comes to protecting babies’ lives in the womb.
In the story of the Emperor’s Seeds, all the children had the same potential, the same ability, the same opportunity – and the same responsibility. To simply tell the truth.
Once they accepted the Emperor’s seed, they were obligated to return that very same seed a year later – in whatever form or shape it took.
But only Ling had the courage and integrity to complete the task given to him. I can’t imagine the pressure he must have felt being the only child with a barren pot of dirt among the thousands of kids with beautiful pots overflowing with flowers, shrubs, and trees.
Honesty and integrity mattered for Ling and the thousands of kids mocking him at the Emperor’s palace.
And honesty and integrity matter on the campaign trail, on candidate surveys and interviews, and in debates and speeches when the pressure to say just the right thing is so great.
Honesty and integrity matter when fear of failure and ridicule can be overwhelming.
Honesty and integrity matter in Juneau, where the pressure to get along with opponents in the majority can be so strong.
But are we looking for men and women who will hide their inadequacies – their boiled seeds – behind campaign promises and unqualified claims of a “pro-life” status?
Or do we need men and women like Ling, will stand tall and resolute when their opponents in the Legislature have more power, more prestige, more money?
If history tells us anything about the future, we’ve got to examine the lush green promises of our “pro-life” candidates much more seriously, otherwise we’ll end up with another pile of boiled seeds.
197 MORE TAXPAYER FUNDED DEATHS
Just look back at the last two years – there were 197 more taxpayer funded abortions in 2017 than there were in 2015 while the total number of babies killed in the womb actually went down!
The Alaska taxpayer is now the largest financial backer of the abortion industry in Alaska. But did you hear anything from your elected representative about the injustice taking place?
Did you hear about the abortion prohibition bills that (weren’t) introduced?
Did you hear about the anti-abortion regulations that (weren’t) put in place?
Did you hear about the abortion funding that (wasn’t) stripped from the budget?
Yet the last group of legislators was no less surveyed, no less endorsed, and no less “pro-life” than today’s batch of “pro-life” incumbents and candidates. And that’s why honesty and integrity matter so much.
Your heard all about the other issues –
The governor stole your PFD and a recall effort was started. But when the governor stole your money to murder 197 more babies in 2017, we didn’t hear a word from our elected representatives.
Then the legislature stole your PFD and we almost had a re-enactment of the ’64 earth quake down in Juneau. But when budgets were passed that paid for 635 babies to be murdered with your money and mine, there wasn’t a single article or interview on the injustice of using taxpayer money to kill innocent babies.
The crime rate went through the roof these past four years and there have been town hall meetings, special conferences, TV and newspaper interviews too numerous to count, police and citizen task forces organized, but the crime of brutally killing babies before their 17th week of life skyrocketed an astounding 45% in two years has been trivialized by either silence or abortion expansion bills that make SB 91 look like the gold standard of legislation. How could that be?
Nearly every Republican candidate and incumbent claims an unqualified “pro-life” status on their websites, campaign flyers, and stump speeches, but they have little to no discern-able track record of ministry, advocacy, legal or historical knowledge or experience in combating the abortion industry and the 17 legislators they have in their back pocket.
Like many other important roles people play in life, very few people actually run for office. Of those who do, fewer still make it through the vetting process laid out by the political parties… resumes are written, financial disclosures are made, background checks conducted – and then they meet the public in town hall meetings, forums, debates, and on the campaign trail.
Of those who run for office, very few make it in the very first time – their sincerity is tested campaign after campaign until they’re elected or they go home for good.
After several years of Jim Colver blocking our attempts to protect children in the womb, Alaska Right To Life recruited George Rauscher to run against him for State House in District 9 – the Sutton to Delta Junction area.
Of the candidates earning endorsements in 2016, George Rauscher was what Alaska Right To Life thought would be a nearly perfect candidate.
George Rauscher was the promising leader many were looking for in many different ways – especially those of us who want so desperately to end legalized child killing in Alaska.
George checked all the boxes.
George signed the Personhood Affirmation.
George promised to sponsor the Life At Conception Act.
In fact, George was going to be THE Pro-Life Champion in the State House, leading with the Life at Conception Act.
BUT GEORGE BOILED HIS OWN SEEDS
Once the elections were over and George Rauscher was sworn into the 30th Legislature as the House Representative for District 9, it became obvious that George’s promises to pro-lifers across the state looked much like the Emperor’s seeds – boiled, limp, and lifeless.
Abortion proponents in the House gained more power, unchallenged by our champion.
The taxpayer funded abortion rate skyrocketed by 45%, again unchallenged by our champion.
The Life at Conception Act was introduced late – by an unendorsed legislator – and unaided by our champion.
Our champion signed on to the Abortion Procedures Act the first opportunity he had – despite overwhelming objections by pro-life voters across the state.
Just imagine the look on the Emperor’s face if the boys holding pots of green, lush shrubs, bushes, trees, and flowers pulled the Emperor’s boiled seed from their pockets and offered them to the Emperor after trying to defraud him with their big green leafy bushes?
But that’s exactly what George Rauscher did when he co-sponsored the Life At Conception Act with just 46 days left in the Regular Session.
Just as those thousands of boys were sent home, boiled seed in their pockets, George Rauscher should be sent home as well.
Every time Alaska Right To Life called on George Rauscher to fulfill his promises and lead the House to end legalized child killing, we found him showing off his beautifully potted plant, while hiding the dead seed of his broken promises.
George Rauscher is up for re-election this year.
But our champion has proven time and again that when the time comes, he won’t act.
Our champion wasn’t honest.
Our champion lost his integrity.
When it came time to sponsor the Life at Conception Act, George Rauscher didn’t want to be our Pro-Life Champion any longer.
When it came time to support the Life at Conception Act, George Rauscher didn’t want to be a Pro-Life supporter.
And when it came time to oppose the Abortion Procedures Act, a bill that expands legal cover for abortionists, George Rauscher surrendered his Baby Feet lapel pin and signed on to that bill, preferring political friends over babies’ lives.
Integrity matters in children’s books that teach valuable life lessons about resisting temptation, staying true to your calling, and withstanding the pressure to lie and cheat for personal gain.
Integrity matters in our work to protect children and end the veil practice of killing them in the womb.
Integrity matters when we talk with our friends and neighbors who believe differently than we do.
Integrity matters when we speak up at school board and town hall meetings, in our churches, and when we pray, work, and donate our time and money to protecting babies and helping their mothers.
Integrity matters when we call out to share help and hope to young, desperate mothers convinced that killing their babies at Planned Parenthood is their only option.
Integrity matters when we send men and women to Juneau as our House Representatives and Senators to fight for children that are killed in their mothers’ wombs.
And integrity matters because somebody is depending on us.
And it matters on the House Floor.
And courage matters because somebody is depending on you to keep your promises.
Integrity matters in ministry, because somebody’s depending on your promises to meet physical and spiritual needs.
Integrity matters on the campaign trail because donors and supporters are counting on your election.
And integrity matters on the House Floor because thousands of innocent pre-born babies are counting on each and every one of us to make abortion both illegal, and unthinkable.
IT’S TIME FOR GEORGE RAUSCHER TO TAKE HIS BOILED SEEDS HOME.
Your integrity matters this year too. The children in the womb that are depending on us to end abortion in Alaska can’t afford another two years of silence and inaction.
Your vote counts this year – perhaps more than most.
You may not live in District 9 – maybe you’re in 10, 11, or 12. Maybe you live in Fairbanks or Ketchikan.
Your vote counts this year – to the children at risk of abortion this year, and for the many more who are counting on you to send your legislators home if all they have to show is the boiled seeds of their ambition and deceit.
As the taxpayer funded abortion rate rose by 45% in two years, where was your legislator?
As the one bill that could end abortion in Alaska sat waiting for committee hearings, where was your legislator?
As the Abortion Procedures Act was introduced with more pro-life opposition than most pro-death legislation, where was your legislator?
If your legislator showed up with nothing but beautiful – but broken promises, it may be time for them to go home.
Here’s what you can do:
Send George Rauscher an email – let him know how you feel HERE.
Get to know your legislator’s voting record HERE.
Get to know your candidates’ pro-life survey scores HERE.
Find your polling place HERE.
And cast your ballot in this year’s primary on August 21st
You’re reading this letter because you’re on our mailing list, you’ve liked our Facebook page, or you’ve signed a pro-life petition before.
The Emperor has given you a seed to nurture and cultivate. It’s been boiled – it won’t grow. But it’s your honesty and integrity He wants.
There are plenty of folks hiding behind beautifully potted shrubs, trees, and flowers of campaign promises, false dichotomies of ‘lesser of two evils,’ and even prophecies of the end of the world if Jim Colver is elected.
But the children we need to rescue from an unjust, untimely, and violently horrible death are depending on you.
Vote tomorrow. Vote your conscience. Vote your Scriptures. And vote your promise to the babies depending on you to save them from abortion. One day at a time… One vote at a time. For ALL TIME.
Patrick Martin, Chair
Alaska Right To Life 2018 PAC
Ella Parkstone of the UK, a 12 year old student entered the Art in Heaven 2015 competition with her “Emperor and the Seed” visual essay.
Ella used the story and her art to show how the “skill of honesty is the greatest skill anyone could have. Without it, what would the world be like?”
Photo Credit: Ella Parkstone, UK