By now, if you follow my blog, you know well that I am pro-life. A while back I wrote an article about why Christians should oppose abortion basing my arguments on biblical passages. While I am a staunch opponent of the pro-abortion culture, I want to make clear that I believe that God offers redemption and hope for those who have been broken by their decision to end the life of the unborn.
For some, it may be difficult to believe that God would forgive such a horrific act, but I’m here to proclaim that His ways are higher than our ways, and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts, according to Isaiah 55:8 and 9. Our human minds cannot contain the infinite wisdom of God.
He wants us to be able to “grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ”. (Ephesians 3:18) This love is offered to all sinners and covers a multitude of sins – including abortion. The type of sin committed has no bearing on the capacity – or willingness – of God’s forgiveness.
We all have sinned (terrible, gross sins) and we all fall short of the glory of God. None of us measures up to His standard. Not one of us is righteous. Ahh, but Christ! He is the way, the truth and the life! Through Christ we have hope!
With their permission, I’d like to share with you three stories of three women. Lori, Erika and Serena have agreed to give us a glimpse into their lives. It takes courage to share their experiences. God made beauty from their ashes, and redemption is the captivating fragrance that rises high above the disaster.
“Redemption is the captivating fragrance that rises high above the disaster.”
Lori was just seventeen when she walked into a Planned Parenthood clinic where she was given counsel that led her to see the logic of an abortion, given her circumstances. “I remember the day just as vividly now as I did 32 years ago. Every detail stays in this memory of mine that so often seems to fail me in my everyday life. I forget what I told my kids a few hours ago, but I forget nothing from that day.”
There was a battle raging in Lori’s mind, going over the imaginary scenario of facing her parents’ anger and disappointment. The thought of bringing shame on the family for having had sex and being “dumb enough to get pregnant” was overwhelming.
“I didn’t know Jesus then as I do today. I believed in an all-knowing God who lived in heaven. Not one who loved me beyond measure and would never leave my side. I didn’t know His Word other than the stories that many children grow up with. It wasn’t as though I came from a church speaking sin and death and condemnation into my life. Honestly, no one brought up abortion as a sin. The very few who knew my secret explained it away as a life that didn’t yet exist.”
Lori recalls her surroundings as she was led through the clinic waiting area to the back room: the faces, the smells, the sounds. And then the procedure began. “The room seemed dark. The vacuum loudly whirred and then there was pain. It wasn’t quick and I kept wondering if I should scream and beg them to stop. But I didn’t and the heartbeat of a child within me stopped beating.”
“In that moment regret found its home within me. The tears wouldn’t stop. Grief filled my entire being. Confusion swirled and brokenness clung tightly to me. A brokenness that would lodge itself into every crevice of my being for many years to come.”
“I’d fixed the problem. Erasing the shame from my family, life could go back to normal. I could continue my basketball career, graduate with honors, and go onto college just as I’d planned. Only life never went back to normal. Ever.”
“Grief filled my entire being.”
Lori has since understood the truth of the Gospel and found complete forgiveness and healing before a holy and loving God.
“It’s never too late to see the fingerprints of God spread over our lives. Being oblivious to the obvious comes easily for us in our humanity, though, doesn’t it? Usually, we notice the fingerprints through the gift of time and the perspective it allows us. That is how my story of healing and redemption went. You see, shame tried to lock me into a vicious cycle of brokenness, but God.”
“He kept calling and showing up so I couldn’t avoid Him. He relentlessly loved me and tugged at my soul – urging me to search for the more. More to Him and more to my relationship with Him.”
“So search I did. And bit by bit He drew me in. Like the layers of an onion, so were the layers to knowing Him and to healing … and to stepping out of shame. Then, when I did, the redemption was a heavy weight removed. It was a peace unlike I’d ever known before. And it was life brand new.”
As wife, adoptive and biological mom, teacher, writer, speaker, and coach, Lori’s heart is to encourage others to meet the challenges of life with the hope of Christ. Wherever you find yourself today, Lori’s blog found at www.LoriSchumaker.com is a place where you can find the encouragement you need. In her first book she shares her family’s adoption story and lessons for all of us on learning to surrender and trust in the Lord. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube.
“It was a peace unlike I’d ever known before. And it was life brand new.”
In 2015, Erika began a journey into the darkness of depression and brokenness. “My first abortion, I was 8 weeks pregnant and my second abortion, I was 14 weeks pregnant. I kept telling myself after the first abortion that I didn’t actually kill my baby because I just swallowed a pill. I was in complete denial that this even took place.”
“With my second abortion, through my pain and the lies of the enemy, I convinced myself that I did the right thing for my baby. I had no idea what would unfold in my life following both of my abortions and the emotional and mental toll that it would have. I did not realize how choosing to end the life of two babies would affect every area and aspect of my life, how it would affect my ability to truly mother my other living children, or that it would deeply affect my identity.”
“My abortions caused me to shut down. It caused such a deep depression in my life and shame took root in so many different forms over the months and years following. I walked through both of the abortions by myself and the trauma that I faced felt like it was too much to bear. I did not want to ever think about my abortions ever again.”
“I did not realize how choosing to end the life of two babies would affect every area and aspect of my life.”
“But God. God, in his love and grace for me, had other plans. God wanted to use my abortions as a way to bring healing and freedom to so many other women out there and that meant that I had to personally face my own two decisions to end the life of two babies. I had to walk through healing, I had to tell people, I had to really allow God to dig deep into my soul and bring things to the surface, things that I never realized were even there and have him peel back the layers to bring me to a place of complete healing and to a place where, eventually, I was set free.”
Erika shares more of her story on her blog. Two abortions in one year. Depression. Brokenness. Shame. God took care of all of that and Set. Her. Free. But it took complete surrender to Christ to get there. Now, as she walks in freedom and wholeness, Erika dedicates her free time helping others find redemption.
“Nothing in my life is the same anymore”, she says, “now that I have received full healing and freedom from my abortions. My depression is gone, my shame is removed, my fears are gone, chains broken, lies crushed. I am whole in Jesus. I am set free.”
“I am whole in Jesus. I am set free.”
At the young age of eleven, Serena was introduced to an adult family friend who began to abuse her sexually. When she was thirteen she found out she was pregnant. Julie Klose, a fellow blogger, shares Serena’s story in more detail on her blog.
Too young and naive to understand the weight of such a decision on her own, Serena’s parents made the choice for her to have an abortion. “We enter the clinic, and I was called back to a room alone. I remember the woman talking about clumps and describing abortion. She asked me if I understood, and I nodded yes, but I had no clue what was happening to me. She took me into another room where I lied down.”
“The doctor came in and smiled at me and said, ‘This won’t take long.’ I remember experiencing the most excruciating pain that I had ever felt, and I began to scream. The doctor shouted at me to shut up. A nurse came in and held my hand, but nothing helped to relieve that kind of pain. They then moved me into a room with other women, and I sat down on a recliner chair. When I stood up from that chair, I remember a gush of blood coming out of me. My dad came in and carried me out to the car. After that day, my abortion was never talked about again.”
Life went on, and after marrying her high school sweetheart and having two children a family trauma triggered something inside of Serena that caused her to “fall apart emotionally”.
“I realized that I had not dealt with my rape and abortion, and it led me to a path of destruction,” Serena acknowledged. “I moved out of the house, leaving my husband and my two children, and turned to drugs and alcohol to numb my pain. My husband was always there for me, but I pushed everyone away. I was running full-speed to hell!”
“I realized that I had not dealt with my rape and abortion, and it led me to a path of destruction.”
Some time passed and Serena hit rock bottom after a drinking binge one night. “I cried out to God in my car in my destitute and drunken state, and He met me there. I felt God telling me to go home, and by God’s grace, I made it home safely with my husband opening the door and welcoming me with open arms!”
With compassion Serena shares, “Everyone needs to walk through the healing process of their past abortion, no matter the circumstances. If you don’t, you will be walking through deception, pain, and all the bondage that goes with that. But the same God who sent people to show His love for me is the same God who will redeem your life too. I want to share my testimony because it is God who shines through my story!”
Julie shares that Serena and her husband serve as board members of Teen Challenge of North Central Indiana. Teen Challenge is a faith-based drug rehabilitation program for men. Serena works with women in jail and those struggling on the streets by sharing the truth about God and the forgiveness and hope he offers.
“I cried out to God in my car in my destitute and drunken state, and He met me there.”
Can God Forgive Abortion?
I think we’ve seen that he can and does! He offers redemption for all those who come to him with a “broken and contrite heart“. When we lay ourselves bare before the Lord, surrendering to His perfect will as we confess our sins he will redeem us, heal us and set our feet on solid ground. All of this has a price, though. But, Christ paid it all!
All we must do is come, by faith.
Do you feel as if you were a prisoner to your past? Jesus came “to proclaim good news to the poor… to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Luke 4:18, 19)
Each one of us represented in this article is available to chat with you, if you’d like. Contact any one of us if you sense that God is drawing you and we’ll lead you to Him. May you experience the redemption that can only be found in Christ.
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