After I had accepted that God was going to walk with me through this journey to confront my abortion, the idea of reliving it started to become a little easier. I was still terrified of what I might dig up from my past, but I was trusting that He would be with me and that I was supposed to confront it for a reason.
Over the course of the last 10+ years, I had started to believe that I wasn’t allowed to talk about my abortion. Because I had made such a horrendous decision, I felt like it was my choice and I had to live with it. After all, why should anyone else care? It’s not exactly a common topic of conversation in practically any setting.
I also was feeling like I didn’t deserve to have children. I mean, physically I probably could – but because I chose to take my child’s life, why on earth should I be blessed with another one?
I shared that feeling with my husband one Sunday morning while we were getting ready for church. I told him that I didn’t feel like I could even hope to have children one day because of my decision. He reassured me that God’s love didn’t work like that. He reassured me that I could have children and that I should not feel guilty because of a sin that I have repented over because God has already forgiven it.
During the sermon, the pastor diverted from the message he was talking about and talked about abortion and that God can and will still bless you with children despite of that. He was living proof of it. At that moment, tears touched my eyes. My husband simply wrote, “God says ‘Hi’” on his page of notes and showed it to me.
We all sin – and we all make mistakes, but we don’t have to live in the guilt of those mistakes. Jesus came to set us free from that – through repentance we get His forgiveness and restoration.
The great deceiver, however, wants us to live in that guilt and live in the misery that results from some of the decisions we make. He uses our past to bind us and to keep us in bondage. He tells us lies about who we are and the value that we have. He will even use other “Christians” to do this if we let him.
Be sober! Be alert! Your adversary the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour. 1 Peter 5:8
The devil… for there is no truth in him… he is a liar and the father of lies. John 8:44
These lies that the devil tells us, forces us to live with destructive beliefs about ourselves. We believe that we aren’t worthy. We believe that we aren’t lovable. We believe that we must remain silent. We believe that we don’t deserve the joys that the Lord has created specifically for us. How sad is it that we allow him to rob us of that joy!?
The only person being protected by our silence and these false beliefs is the deceiver himself. He is the only one who stands to gain a single thing. Freedom comes from exposing the secret – in fact, more than freedom comes in exposing the secret. The stronghold of guilt is torn down and the path is paved toward healing.
Light comes from sharing the truth. Have you ever noticed that after you expose a truth that you’ve been hiding, you always feel better? There is no place for darkness if the light is allowed in. That doesn’t mean that there still isn’t difficulty in sharing the truth, but once it’s out there, a sense of relief follows.
Naturally you can tell that the next step in my journey was to share my secret. I sat down with my husband and shared the detail. He already knew that I had an abortion, but I hadn’t ever shared the full story with him. I sat down with a good friend and shared the detail. She also knew about my past, but not the full story. To my amazement, both of them received the story and responded in love. There was no judgement, no condemnation and no disapproval. There was only Christ’s love, God’s forgiveness, and a supportive empathy shining through.
After sharing my story, the worst part was recognizing and reliving the pain that I didn’t even know existed. I had bottled it up for so long and lied to myself for so long that I had a really hard time facing the fact that the decision was mine and mine alone. Yes, my ex-boyfriend arranged for it to take place, but I showed up. I walked into the clinic. And I didn’t leave until it was over.
My comfort came from knowing that redemption and restoration is found in Him and that He never wastes anything. There would be something good coming out of this. He wouldn’t re-open this wound and leave it open. Similar to cleansing an infection, we had to re-open the wound so that the light could shine through and heal it. Something better was on the way – but not until after it got even worse…
What I Learned:
- Many of the things I believed about myself were lies – lies embedded in me by the deceiver.
- The devil was the only person truly protected by my silence – I certainly wasn’t!
- While it wasn’t easy, sharing my story wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be.
- The Lord is good and will use my pain for something good – I just had to hold on a bit longer.
- What secret are you holding on to from your past?
- What type of damage is holding on to this secret doing to you? To your soul?
- What false beliefs do you have as a result of your past?
- Is it time to reveal your secret? Who can you trust to receive your story?
If you need prayer or a listening ear, please contact me privately. I know that not every recipient to a shared secret will receive it in love as my husband and friend did. I am happy to be a safe place for you to reveal your story, if you need it.