This isn’t about politics.
This isn’t a debate about government control.
This is about people.
Specifically women who, in many major circles, are placed in the category of the unthinkable. They’ve done the unimaginable and should be added to the list of the worst of the worst.
They’re talked about on Facebook like they’re heartless individuals who can’t see, feel, think or read. They’re often ripped apart by those who have never been in their position, yet jump to many conclusions as to how they got there or why they did what they did.
This is for the broken.
This is for the hurting.
This is for the lost, embarrassed and ashamed.
This is for the woman who needs to hear that she’s not alone.
This is for the one who needs to know there is forgiveness, freedom, liberty and boundless love in Christ.
This is for the woman who, like me, had an abortion that she regrets.
No one wants an abortion as she wants an ice cream cone or a Porsche. She wants an abortion as an animal, caught in a trap, wants to gnaw off its own leg.- Frederica Mathewes-Green
16 years ago I was that animal caught in a trap. I had made my share of poor decisions, but this time it caught up to me. I was pregnant in college, and nearly 3,000 miles away from my family and my home.
I was young, naive, and completely afraid. I wanted to finish my degree and live the life I envisioned as a ‘normal’ student, but how would this be possible now? How could I even show my face in public?
I was terrified of the impending humiliation, and whether real or imagined, my panic grew. The whispers of doubt turned into screams of terror in my mind, and while I could try to pass the blame off on someone else (anyone else), the time came for me to make a decision. I didn’t feel as though I had a choice, and it was time to do the only thing I thought I could do.
I ended the life of my unborn child.
I left the clinic numb and in a foggy haze. I went home and waited for the relief to wash over me, because that’s what I heard was supposed to happen. I waited and waited and waited…
That day never came.
Instead I went on for years living in a pit of guilt, depression and shame.
Maybe I looked fine on the outside but each day that I bore my own scarlet letter in silence I lost a part of who I was. I would look in the mirror only to find a hollowed out version of myself.
I didn’t value my body because I’d already done the worst action imaginable.
I didn’t think I deserved any form of happiness because what kind of monster, who would do such a despicable thing, deserved to be happy?
I successfully convinced myself that I was damaged goods, fractured beyond repair.
My heart sank to the deep pit of my stomach when I saw a pregnant woman or newborn baby. I’d cringe every time someone mentioned the word abortion or when it was the focus of a headline on T.V. I was on the verge of breaking down whenever I heard a dreadful suctioning sound that reminded me of the time and place when everything was forever changed.
I didn’t fully grasp that I was traumatized until much later on, and truthfully, I thought these torturous feelings were just punishment and absolutely everything I deserved.
Like many women I kept these things to myself. I didn’t know who I could turn to. I didn’t want damaging words to wound me more than I already was.
This was not a decision I was proud of and I didn’t want anyone convincing me that I should be. And if I heard one more woman proclaim “I could never do that”, in her air of haughtiness, surely I was going to scream.
Throughout this entire experience I was in Christ, but I didn’t know Christ. It seemed impossible to think that the same God who created life could possibly forgive me for taking life away. I couldn’t see how He could ever put my wrecked and shattered pieces back together again.
He led them from the darkness and deepest gloom;
he snapped their chains.
Let them praise the Lord for his great love
and for the wonderful things he has done for them.
Psalm 107:14-15 NLT
I was in the darkness, but He drew me out. He never stopped calling my name, pursuing me or loving me. As I came to learn more about God’s true character I realized that He doesn’t view me as man does, and that’s when everything changed.
Finally, finally, finally, I got it, and I began to walk in the healing power of His glorious light.
All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4 NLT
It is in this place of healing that I know I am free. I have no doubt that I am forgiven. And it is from this place of profound peace and comfort in my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, that I share the most vulnerable part of my heart.
I share to offer hope to the woman who needs to know that all is not lost. To the woman who can hardly make out these words because of the salty sting of her desperate tears. To the one who is dejected and lonely with no semblance of hope. This is for the one whom the enemy is seeking to devour, to let you know you don’t have to remain in a tormented place.
I know I’m just one voice. One small voice that’s barely audible over the crashing wave of a great divide, but I will use my voice still.
I will use it to tell you that you’re not alone. I understand. I hear you, I see you, and I love you.
I will tell you that your heartbreak is my heartbreak, and your sorrow is my pain. I will tell you that He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, and that one day joy will replace the mourning. I will tell you that I have no strength to share these words or believe them for myself if it wasn’t for Jesus, and while I am but a vessel, it is the Lord who calls your name.
It is time sweet friend, precious daughter of the King. It is time for you to live the life you’ve been too hurt to live. The one you didn’t believe could ever exist. It’s time to forgive yourself and embrace the liberty and freedom He has for you. It is time for you to release the past and run towards the future.
It is time for you to love yourself and let it go.