Many sitting in our churches have had one or more abortions. How can the church help these people heal?
I’ve come to believe that the enemy’s victory in the area of abortion, is not just the 63+ million lives lost, but rather the lost voice of the healed and forgiven church.
Jesus said, “If you continue in my Word, you really are my disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31b-32 The church is God’s plan for life. And we, the church, have the opportunity to help set people free, to change what Satan has meant for evil. We have the opportunity to open the door for women & men to speak about the pain of abortion. We have the opportunity to expose darkness to the light. This step has a purpose far beyond opening old wounds or airing our dirty laundry for others to see. The purpose of sharing our past pain & sin is to point the way to hope, healing, recovery, and freedom.
God never intended for us to struggle alone. People need one another and are designed for relationships. Amazing things occur when 2 or more people grasp hands and hearts and share their pain together.
Hurt people, hurt people. When those injured by abortion find forgiveness, healing, and wholeness they break the cycle of hurting others as well as themselves. Families can be restored, marriages can be saved, and churches can be made whole again.
As I have ministered to thousands of women, I have seen the trend of the missing voice of the church. Although we’ve heard many sermons that rightfully reveal God’s Word about life, we’ve heard far fewer messages about the path to restoration and healing after abortion. A great place of power comes in healing in and through the church.
Galatians 6:1b tells us, “You who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently.” It is the church’s responsibility to provide a safe environment in which restoration and reconciliation can occur.
I’ve seen pregnancy center volunteers come from the church who are willing to share their abortion stories and restoration with strangers, but never reveal the truth to Christian friends, Pastors, or even family members. Many men & women continue to believe that abortion is the unmentionable sin, thereby leaving the truth of God’s restorative power hidden underneath the pews.
After all these years of ministry, I still find that although statistics tell us that 7 in 10 of those who have had abortions identify as Christians, the testimony of Christians who have been forgiven and set free from the heartbreak of a past abortion continues to be a soft cry instead of a mighty roar.
Now more than ever, we are in desperate need for the word of our testimony declaring the truth about abortion, God’s redemptive healing, and a clear plan of restoration & hope.
—– FIVE THINGS YOUR CHURCH CAN DO —–
- Educate and equip Pastors, ministry leaders, Christian counselors, and caregivers about abortion and the aftermath it causes
- Readily and openly display your church’s availability and minister to those affected by abortion through visible literature, website paths, abortion healing Bible studies, testimonies, and open communication both inside & outside the church
- Allow those who have been healed to champion pro-life causes in your community, state, and nation that will allow the world to hear God’s truth about abortion from a biblical perspective and a love-based voice
- Support and encourage those in your church family who are willing to share and offer Bible studies, this is a lonely and tough ministry and they need your encouragement and open endorsement
- Support your local pregnancy resource center and abortion healing efforts with your prayers, finances, and volunteers
Click HERE to get our Church Resource Booklet, This PDF booklet contains valuable information to inform the church about the impact of abortion and what they can do to help and bring the hope of healing to their own church family.
Surrendering the Secret offers healing resources, training and support, and a connection to healing groups led by our Certified Leaders. This ministry was created for such a time as this and we would be honored to help you. Visit surrenderingthesecret.com/find-help to send us a message today.
Amen! Great article. 3 yrs ago I was asked to become Women’s Ministry leader at a Baptist church in SC. I knew God was telling this NY transplant to share her secret of abortion in 1974. I let the pastor know, who said “the church wasn’t ready for that,” so I told him I’d pray about it…It was a women’s event, after all, and the church had been dropping the ball on this for years. After I shared with about 32 women, within 3 weeks, 12 women and 2 men shared their stories and tears with me. Mostly privately, but from all aspects of church life…the associate pastor, head of security and his wife each had a story, my Sunday school teacher, a worship leader, church financial sec’t, you name it. From 25 to 75, each had a story of a lost child or grandchild. It led to 3 SS classes now supporting the local Preg center, and the start of ndividual recovery counseling. God is good, hearts are restored, heads are lifted by the grace and mercy of the Lord. I’ve got to share at several local churches and have seen several more set free.
I had an abortion in the early 70s, as a new Christian, even though I was married, I was morbidly fearful of childbirth and had never gravitated to children. I was confused, and PP offered absolutely no counsel, but *when* to schedule the abortion. It was excruciating surgery (and now I wonderful what my poor, dear child experienced), but I didn’t understand what I was doing and the pastor for whom I worked even gave me the business card of the director of PP (she was his friend)! Several years later, as God revealed the truth of Ps 139 (that I had not before read), the Holy Spirit revealed the truth, and I was horrified. Though I confessed my sin to Him repeatedly, I was burdened by shame and guilt for 18 years. Finally, at a secular journaling retreat, as I wrote about this sin in my journal and read my confession and angst aloud to the participants, I experienced complete healing and release. Of course, years before, I had experienced God’s complete forgiveness, but I didn’t *feel* forgiven until I confessed my sin in front of others. I wrote about this remarkable healing in my book, Love Letters to God: Deeper Intimacy through Written Prayer. Still, I only shared my abortion testimony at church one-on-one or in a small Bible Study that I led. When one woman confessed her own abortion, I felt compelled to share about mine (though my book was not yet published and my pastor didn’t know); I felt I could not leave her standing alone. After our confessions, another woman confessed three abortions! No one had known about these abortions, and the women had suffered for years in silence. I attend a conservative, Reformed Evangelical church in Saint Louis. They are strongly poor pro-life and our pastors speak on the subject of abortion in their sermons and about the love and forgiveness of Christ; however, while the church offers every kind of support group imaginable, from divorce to addiction to bereavement to career, there is absolutely nothing offered to post-abortive women. It’s really sad that women like me have to go outside of their own church body to receive help, hope, and healing. Frankly I don’t even think it’s biblical to have to resort to that (by this I mean there is nothing wrong with going outside, but that it’s wrong for our church, itself, not to help us). The James 5:16 says, “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” That verse is in the context of the local congregation, and our church provides that opportunity in various groups, except for post-abortive women. Why should we be the only church members for whom such healing is not possible within its walls? In 2016 my pastor asked me to share my abortion testimony publicly at two worship services in just two minutes each. I told him that that felt cavalier and disrespectful, and that I couldn’t possibly share such deep pain and subsequent healing in such little time in front of the entire church (women, men, teens, and children); only a handful knew my story. Still, he encouraged me to do this because he said even short testimonies can really be powerful. He and I negotiated several points in what I was asked to do, and we extended the time to 6 minutes at each service. I cannot begin to tell you the number of people who came up to me afterwards, some of whom had had abortions and also men affected by it. One elderly man even told me that his mother had aborted one of her children during the Depression because there was not enough money as it was to feed the family. He said that decision haunted her for the rest of her life. Another man told me that his parents divorced over her two abortions, and that he had to be institutionalized over the guilt she suffered. Also, several days later, a woman in the congregation who’d heard me speak, called me about a family member who was contemplating abortion. Though the young woman watched my video testimony and I was willing to help in any way possible, she went ahead with the abortion. What I did not realize is that two years later another woman who had heard the testimony would contact me about her niece who was scheduled to have an abortion in just days. In short, the girl’s mother watched my testimony, talked to her daughter, agreed to support her in any way possible, and the girl had the baby and put him up for an open adoption. Now she has the joy of knowing her baby, but also knowing that he is well provided for by more mature, loving parents. She was only 15 at the time. Had my pastor not asked me to give my testimony openly before the entire congregation, the ending to the story may not have been so happy. So you’re right: So many women suffer in silence because the church, while perhaps condemning the sin, offers nothing for women like us. I always find it so interesting on Mother’s Day Sunday how every single kind of mother is mentioned, usually so nobody is offended over the pain that not being a mother can cause on Mother’s Day, but never is there one word uttered about post-abortive women who are indeed mothers whose children now dwell with God in heaven. Like you, Pat, I’m convinced that women like you and me hold a key and powerful voice in helping to end this Abortion Holocaust. I’m so glad that Roe V wade has been overturned, but it will hardly prevent women who want to get abortions from having them. Hearts need to change. But maybe hearing the truth from women who have had abortions, who have suffered afterward, could make a genuine difference. I know it surely did in the case of this young woman I know, and I thank God that she, an unmarried teen, had the courage to have her baby; knowing God graciously used my testimony in her and her baby’s life gave me such joy, knowing that my child did not die in vain. Finally, let me just say in closing, that I am appalled by the vicious comments I read on Facebook by Christians who shame women like me and call us murderers. I even shared the entire story that I just shared with you, fully acknowledging my own part in this terrible sin, and also the redemption and love of Jesus Christ. Not one person commented, including the author I knew who posted that blog. Also, I just recalled a prolife fundraiser I attended in Saint Louis, where the guest speaker recited from memory the most horrific “poem” I have ever heard. It’s called “The Abortion Tree,” and likens women who abort to those who used to lynch Blacks in the South. He was African American. Prolifers in that audience (who needed no convincing that abortion was wrong), actually laughed! No wonder women who’ve had abortions don’t come forward. The “Facebook women” and those in attendance at the prolife banquet were Christians, all.