This Mother’s Day I want to acknowledge the countless women across our nation who dread this day for many reasons: abandonment, abuse, adoption, abortion, and other often-hidden secrets. My thoughts today are especially with women who’ve undergone the heartbreak of abortion. A survey sponsored by CareNet in 2015 verified that more than 4 out of 10 women who’ve had abortions were churchgoers when they had their procedures.
This statistic should cause Christians to ask serious questions about where the church is missing the mark in meeting the needs of women and teens during crisis pregnancies. It’s important for us to understand that we may simultaneously be pro-life and compassionately listen to, support, and grieve with women who have experienced abortion.
I’m staunchly pro-life, but the term includes pouring life into suffering people. A large percentage of women (and men who’ve fathered aborted children) attend churches and Bible studies with us and silently bear the burden of past abortions. For them, Mother’s Day can resurrect pain too excruciating to talk about and shame they think is impossible to escape.
I know many committed Christian women who are burdened with regret and shame about past abortions. Some were forced to abort their child by parents or other people in positions of power over them. Others sought abortions in desperation in their early lives. But all silently suffer ongoing grief, even decades later.
We are also surrounded by men and women who are not believers who carry shame and grief from this painful decision in their past. Loving others as God loves us includes opening arms of compassion to them.
In my 50+ years as a Jesus follower, I do not remember hearing comfort offered in church on Mother’s Day to mothers or fathers who had experienced the loss of a child to abortion. Since this has been my experience,I’d like to offer a few words today.
- Jesus sees your hidden hurt and weeps with you. He offers comfort, hope and healing.
- Through Him, what we think is ruined can be redeemed and used.
- Satan’s goal is to keep you chained to the past through regret. Jesus’s love and forgiveness sets you free.
- God’s mercy is great enough to forgive you and heal your scars.
- The weight of your fear-driven choices can be lifted. God forgives you. Your child is safe in His arms.
- God knows your past, present, and future. You are not unqualified, less than, a failure, or shameful. If you have a personal relationship with him, your sin is in the past and under the blood of Jesus. He wants you to walk joyfully in His plan and purpose for you.
- If you are in a ‘shaming’ church body, find a nurturing, Bible-teaching church that loves as Jesus loved.
If you or someone you know who would be blessed by a resource for men and women touched by abortion, I recommend two resources from Musicforthesoul.org. The first is Mercy Great Enough, an entire project for those who are experiencing abortion grief. The second is a song called Heaven’s Playground, that offers hope about our pre-born children in heaven.
For more encouragement, check here:
Planned from the Start (devotional book)
Please let me know if this blog ministers to you or someone you know. I’d love to hear from you.