by Deaconess Pamela Buhler and Deaconess Chrissie Gillet

How do we show the love and mercy of Christ to those who have participated in an abortion decision?

Despite what Scripture says about taking a life, women faced with a crisis pregnancy are often convinced that abortion is the right choice or the only choice. With this conclusion, no wonder so many abortions occur. Nearly 3,000 abortions occur daily in the United States. That’s equivalent to the deaths from the attack on 9/11, recurring every day in America. As a person, family, and country, we have gone astray like sheep. When our Shepherd calls out to us, “Come follow me,” do we know His voice? Do we recognize the love and mercy of Christ when He says, “Your sins are forgiven, go and sin no more”?

As sinners, it only takes one suggestion to reinforce our sinful nature. Suddenly, we are convinced our reason for abortion is acceptable, perhaps even more so because it is legal. The truth is we make many sinful decisions, and we often follow the wrong voice instead of turning to the Word of God. St. Paul reminds us in Romans 6:1-2:

“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?”

One sin covered up is often replaced by two or more sins. God tells us that where there is light and truth, darkness has no place. At Word of Hope, we share God’s truth with guilt-ridden people to reveal the darkness of sin and shine light on the freedom from guilt in Christ’s forgiveness. Through the blood of the Lamb, Jesus, there is forgiveness, grace, and mercy. This gift from God in Christ is at the heart of our approach to abortion recovery at Word of Hope.

Word of Hope (WOH), a ministry of Lutherans For Life, is a national hotline that offers confidential services 24/7 by phone, text, email, and video. We provide prevention, intervention, and healing resources for life issues like abortion by proclaiming the value of all life as divinely created and redeemed by Christ. At WOH, we acknowledge that forgiveness from sinful decisions and reconciliation with God through Christ is the Christian’s cyclical path of sanctification. Our abortion recovery method leads individuals through the journey of recognizing their pain because of sin to living with a revived hope in Christ’s promises.

At WOH we walk with each person through the six steps of abortion recovery:

  1. Recognize the source of their pain, the suffering related to sin, and the need for a Savior.
  2. Respect how every person is a sinner and vulnerable to follow a secular worldview instead of God’s value for life.
  3. Relate the grief to the greater tragedy of death by abortion.
  4. Release of guilt and grief by trusting in Jesus for forgiveness from sins.
  5. Redemption in Christ that reconciles the forgiven sinner with God.
  6. Rehabilitate the individual through the healing process to be a Gospel-motivated voice For Life in the church and community.

Anguish and guilt often replace the relief sought through an abortion. When someone struggles with the overwhelming guilt of a past sin, like abortion, repentance and reconciliation are the only source of relief. There is hope!

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”                 (1 John 1:9)

Through all our days, the Lord never leaves us nor forsakes us. He is a patient God, waiting and wanting all to come to repentance and be saved.

So how does Word of Hope show the love and mercy of Christ to those who have gone astray by participating in an abortion decision?

We seek to reach the lost and injured sheep. Healing begins by sharing God’s Word so His voice of love, mercy, and forgiveness is made known.

The journey continues by connecting individuals with a local congregation where Word and Sacrament regularly affirm the hope in Christ’s promises.

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