The Power of a Testimony
My first question on that initial night of my abortion recovery class was, “Are you going to make us tell anyone?” I was relieved to discover that encouraging public confessions wasn’t the purpose of the group. When I finished the class and received God’s healing, I was the one that received His Calling to share my story publicly. This lead to a great struggle within my heart but God eventually brought me to full surrender.
Maintaining a secret takes a great deal of energy. Jesus spoke in Matthew 6:4-18 about only three things that we should keep secret: fasting, giving and prayer. Secrets weren’t something He embraced because in Luke 8:17 he assures that there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed. Revelations 12:11 outlines the power of the testimony over Satan’s work, They overcame him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony. Clearly human testimony is an important element our world.
Exposing the Truth
Abortion decisions are normally based on lies and then covered with additional deception. Women were promised an “eraser” for their mistake in this choice. Normal fabrications from those encouraging an abortion decision typically include the following false statements:
- Your life will be better because of this choice!
- No one need ever know about this pregnancy and you can just go on with your life.
- You are not in a position to bring a baby into the world without support – you are doing your child a favor in making this abortion decision.
- It’s not a baby but just a blob of tissue.
- Your parents would want you to do this if they knew you were pregnant. You don’t need to involve them in this decision.
The lies are still believed because the truth has yet to be proclaimed consistently by those who have experienced abortion. In spite of acknowledging that a child is lost in abortion, society still somehow may perceive that this choice is a good thing for women. Until this myth is exposed, abortions can continue to harm women and families.
Counting the Costs
Revelations 12:11 (outlined above) also relays that this witness could mean death to those called to share – They did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. Many pro-life groups have “used” the testimony of unprepared and unhealed post-abortive individuals to further their own political gain. Without directing them to a healing program first, or verifying their attendance of one, these groups can actually intensify the pain and solitude many struggle with before healing. Unfortunately, past treatment of post-abortive speakers in the United States was sometimes horrifying.
One woman shared that early in our movement; she publicly shared the story of her four abortions to a large pro-life audience. It was the late 70’s and she was verbally and physically attacked afterwards. The hate and anger against her truly threatened her life. Satan’s message, through those angry voices, was hard to forget.
When she shares about being post-abortive today, she rarely reveals the exact number of abortions. I believe that is good wisdom. While it’s recommended that women share the number of abortions within the abortion recovery group setting, providing the exact number of abortions isn’t necessary in a public setting. Audiences can understand one or two abortions but moving past that can actually overwhelm an audience and confuse the message being presented.
Even peaceful protesters can be misguided as to the effectiveness of yelling at the women entering abortion clinics. Post-abortive women have relayed to me that they were spit upon by pro-life protesters and actually fled into the welcoming arms of those who offered them shelter inside the clinics.
Thankfully, many sidewalk counselors are open to education by those of us who have entered abortion clinics. Once they realize how many of these women feel when making an abortion choice, they become more compassionate and successful in their ministry to help these women with other options.
Standing in a public spotlight, confessing to taking the life of their child, is not a call that many can embrace. It requires extensive depth, strength and maturity in God. If a post-abortive person who has gone through healing believes they are not called to a public place, or the timing isn’t right, they will normally be open to sharing privately with someone who is considering abortion. Sharing privately is a particularly fruitful use of our stories.
The consequences of obedience for the confessor can be difficult for the non-post-abortive to imagine. Satan’s accusing voice has a constant condemning message, “If they ever knew you killed your child, they would hate you.” It is only at great personal sacrifice, humility, and God’s power that one can share this truth. Publicly sharing a past abortion must be a clear call from God that can only come after His healing process is complete.
In the next sections of Module 9, we will work through how to know God’s call to speak, how to share this story with friends, family and children and much more!