Letters to the editor (12/12/13)


The Scriptures are right
First, I would like to thank those who had the courage to speak up on behalf of the unborn in the letters to the editor last Thursday.
I felt convicted as I read them, because I was prompted to write as well, but did not.
To be honest, the weeks before the voting was to take place, my thoughts had been: “If I lived in Albuquerque, I would vote ‘for’ this bill, at least they are trying to do something!” Well, let me explain to you what happened!
On voting day when the bill failed, I was taken to Scripture in Deuteronomy 30:19, which says: “I God call Heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Therefore, choose life, that you and your seed may live, to love the Lord your God, to listen to His voice, and to cleave to Him. For He is your life and the length of your days.”
That Scripture spoke to my heart that morning. I pray it speaks to yours.
We, as believers, cannot continue to compromise the Word of God. We tend to settle for the lesser of two evils. We try to walk in love rather than righteousness. That’s what’s happened with the body, past and present. Walking in love is great, but we must also walk in His truth.
Whenever the Scriptures, whether the old or the new, state that a person “believed in God,” it tells us that the person has made a decision to treat God’s Word as certain (true and trustworthy) and has made a commitment “to do” what God wants.
Being neutral is not of God. His way is a clear path of right and wrong and the true believer should always take a stand against evil based on the Word of God. It’s not always easy, but it is time.
Something to think about: If all people even kept one commandment, such as “do not steal,” there would be no locks on doors, there would be no robberies of homes or children kidnapped. We would have respect for each other, and therefore fulfill the commandment “to love our neighbor, as ourselves.”
The Scriptures function as a light in a dark age. We must not be swayed by the large number of people who are persuaded by unbiblical ideas. We must not become lax in our thinking, God has set a day which will mark the end of this world as we know it.
That morning, I truly understood in my heart that abortion is never acceptable in God’s sight, whether it is at 19 weeks or 21 weeks. He is the giver of life and it is a gift from Him. Life and death are in His hands. Please, no more compromises.
Do we serve a God who is forgiving and loving? Absolutely! But we must turn from our ways, and truly follow His ways.

Sharon Swidor
Rio Communities

Only two weeks to apply
The New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange is committed to getting as many individuals as possible enrolled in health insurance plans by Dec. 23 (the deadline for health insurance coverage effective January 2014).
The federal website is improving, but our overriding concern now is time. Individuals who want and need insurance coverage beginning in January 2014 have two weeks to enroll.
An estimated 200,000 New Mexicans are eligible for the exchange. For many, enrolling now is critical. NMHIX may be the only way they can afford health insurance since the plans offered will provide federal premium subsidies to individuals whose annual household income is between 138 and 400 percent of the federal poverty level.
Cost savings can be significant. For example, a single, 35-year-old man in Taos making $7.65 an hour and working 40 hours a week is eligible for a premium subsidy of $2,507 per year or $208.92 per month. If he chooses a bronze-level plan with a premium cost of $188.69 per month, he would pay no premium for his coverage and would have an out-of-pocket cost maximum of $6,350 per year.
Or, take the example of a family of four living in Roswell. With an annual household income of $58,000, they would qualify for a premium subsidy of $350.08 per month. If they choose a silver-level plan, they could cover their entire family for a net cost of $373.88 per month.
We are here to help with a number of available online and in-person resources. NMHIX has a bilingual call center, 1-855-99NMHIX, open 24/7.  We provide information on two websites: www.BeWellNM.com (English) or www.SeguroQueSiNM.com (Spanish).
On the www.BeWellNM.com site, we offer an easy-to-use plan comparison tool that lets individuals shop and compare plans, and even add in estimated federal premium subsidies, so that they know what their estimated monthly premiums will be without having to open an account on www.healthcare.gov.
There is in-person assistance through a network of more than 370 health care guides at 200 in-person enrollment sites throughout the state as well as more than 400 certified insurance agents and brokers.
Individuals can find help by typing in their zip code on either website or call the hotline to get a list of guides, enrollment sites and insurance agents or brokers nearest to them.
These individuals are trained to provide knowledgeable assistance to walk New Mexicans through their options and the enrollment process so that they can meet the deadline and select the plan that is best for them — one that meets their needs, the needs of their family members and is affordable.
There have been challenges, but we cannot lose sight of this important opportunity to provide thousands of New Mexicans with access to health care insurance. It’s time to have this important discussion, one New Mexican to another.
Spend some time with our plan and premium comparison tool. See what this means for you and your family and then show family, friends, neighbors and others what this new opportunity means to them.  Become part of the many who help New Mexicans get access to the healthcare they need and can afford.
We urge anyone interested to contact our call center or visit our website as soon as possible. It may be the best holiday present anyone can give to themselves or to their families.

Mike Nuñez
Interim CEO
New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange