About four years ago my eyes were opened to what I’ve come to view as the signature evil of this secular age: abortion on demand. A close friend of mine went to work for an organization that ministered to young women who were struggling with the decision to either abort or carry their infants to term. At the time I certainly would have considered myself “pro-life” but like most Christians I had no idea of the magnitude of the problem of abortion and the concomitant epidemic of post-abortion syndrome. Except to those who deeply care (like say, Rick Santorum) it’s a holocaust that goes largely unnoticed. Like so much evil in this world we have become used to it. We have learned to live with Roe v. Wade and its consequences. It has become a very politically incorrect topic–not the stuff of polite conversation.
In our first serious dialogue about her work my friend stated that 43% of women in this country were “post-abortive.” I was incredulous. I assumed she was exaggerating. I couldn’t believe that nearly half of all women in this country have had abortions. I argued with her. I said perhaps 10 or 15%–maybe even 20% but surely not 43%. That number simply couldn’t be accurate. I learned later that this number came from Planned Parenthood.
I became a born again Christian in 1979. At that time I had no particular feelings about abortion. I had read in some New Age book that the soul entered the body at birth and so in my mind prior to then the unborn baby was mere tissue–just a tenuous blob of protoplasm. I might add that my college education was in the mid-1960s when nurture was everything and nature didn’t count for much–that who we were was the result of learning and life experience, and not something biologically inherited and nurtured in the womb. Everything prior to birth, including the Divine, was pretty much irrelevant.
As I gradually grew into a more mature Christian during the 1990s I began to feel more convicted about abortion. But I did not know much about the topic. From time to time my pastor would announce that he and our church were “completely pro-life” but he never preached a sermon on it. It was always mentioned in passing and I came to realize that pro-life to him was more about feeding the hungry and being good stewards of God’s creation. Abortion was a hot-button topic and also apparently not a topic important enough to warrant a full sermon.
I had many subsequent conversations with my friend on the subject of abortion. I also attended a seminar on post-abortion syndrome put on by Ramah. I started hearing the pain of friends and clients who were post-abortive. The Holy Spirit was softening my heart and convicting me of this monstrous evil that was stalking God’s creation. A growing awareness of the magnitude of the problem when taken together with the harping, misleading rationalizations of the pro-choice community helped make this tragedy completely manifest. I would never be able to look at a young child or a pregnant mother the same way again. Every time I saw a helpless infant or an adorable 3-y.o child I saw a potentially aborted fetus. Every young unmarried woman who decided to have her child instead of abort became for me a bit of a heroine. I would never again be able to countenance a politician or a pastor who could equivocate on the subject–abortion had become the spit in my soup.
In 2010, I wrote Jesus v. satan: The Message of the Wilderness Temptations. It is based on the story of Jesus’ 40-day struggle in the wilderness found in Luke 4. I saw the three temptations as: bread/materialism, power/control and safety/trust. In the section on power I give numerous examples of the evil inherent in people seeking control over others. I view the urge to control others for our own selfish and often nefarious needs as the ultimate soul sickness–the complete anti-Christ mode of living. In my opinion living to control others is antithetical to a life submitted to Jesus and to His control. I included a chapter on abortion in the section on power and control:
“Just as slavery was the signature evil of the 19th Century, now the killing of millions of unborn children is the characteristic evil of this secular age. Millions of young women have bought into the lie that their bodies belong to themselves alone. Abortion is after all legal, and being legal there is the implication that it is somehow moral. In this country alone 1.2 million young women decide each year to exert ultimate control over another life. World wide the number of abortions exceeds 45-million a year. That comes out to over 120,000 tiny lives ended per day. Except for identical twins, each of those children is a totally unique creation shaped in the Creator’s image. The unique mix of DNA in each of those lives came about only once in eternity. How many artists, scientists and geniuses were snuffed out in this holocaust of the unborn? God cannot be pleased with His power being usurped so wantonly.
The militant feminism of the 1970s helped bring about much needed equal rights for women. Unfortunately, mere parity was not something to be grasped for some. They needed power and their efforts reached a crescendo by the 1990s in an “I am woman hear me roar” craziness that reveled in goddess worship and the official enthronement of powerful women as predatory as she-wolves in corporate boardrooms, sports, media and entertainment. No longer was motherhood held as sacred and in fact was often viewed as inconvenient. Along the way to empowerment came Roe v. Wade in 1973 and the Supreme Court’s decision to allow legalized abortion. Mothers were not merely equal now, they officially held the power of life and death, and this god-like power had ridden in on the coattails of something which should have been a blessing.
In this country only about 7% of abortions result from incest, rape or to save the mother’s life. The other 93% are because being pregnant or having a child is in some way inconvenient. For some, I suspect the motivation was simply because they could–it was an exercise in power. It was easy, it was cheap and it was legal. I recall reading of a couple “celebrating” an abortion because their lives were being “freed up.”
Post abortion syndrome is the psychological consequence which most women who’ve had abortions suffer. It is a pervasive depression that dogs the sufferer like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) does the survivors of combat. Over the many years that I’ve been a counselor I have treated dozens of women for the emotional consequences of abortion. Some women knew immediately that they had made the wrong choice. Others engaged in denial and repression only to have the symptoms of guilt, anxiety and emotional numbness surface years later. Many turned to alcohol or drugs to deaden the pain, or developed eating disorders to gain a false sense of control in their lives.
In my opinion post abortion syndrome is the greatest unrecognized emotional disorder plaguing our society at present. It is unrecognized by the American Psychiatric Association as a distinct disorder due to the desperately evil lobbying efforts of the pro-choice and Planned Parenthood crowd.
Some picky but heartlessly misguided parents have testing performed on their unborn children to guarantee having a perfect baby. Fetuses not deemed ideal are then aborted. Another practice tangentially related to those abortions is that of single professional women and childless couples surfing sperm banks to find genetic material for the perfect baby. In this era of elitism and excellence why should anyone settle for average–as in selecting a child from a questionable gene pool and with possible special needs. Why not instead get sperm from some Harvard educated Aryan with athletic credentials?”
The degree to which the pro-choice crowd currently mocks the pro-life movement is stunning. Planned Parenthood has a recent directive to pray 40-days for “choice” and abortion is termed “sacred care.” They ask their followers to “give thanks” for abortionists. This warped initiative echoes the 40-day prayer vigils of the pro-life movement. It appears to be as a result of their discomfort with the fact that most of the Republican presidential candidates are stridently pro-life. Perhaps they sense that change is in the air.
I have nothing but compassion and a deep empathy for women who made the mistake of “choice” and then regretted it. Those who are in-Christ are forgiven and I believe they will meet all of their children again in eternity, and that the children they didn’t have will greet them not with condemnation but with joy. Back in 1978, my ex-wife was “late” and made an appointment at an abortion clinic. But the following day her period started and she cancelled the appointment. I was so self-centered and hard-hearted at the time that when she told me I felt little or nothing. Had she actually had an abortion I would be overwhelmed with sadness today–not sadness for the child, but sadness for my wife and myself.
The issue is not young ladies who chose abortion. God forgives them. My quarrel is with a society gone mad with ego and power and the satanically driven thought that our lives and our children’s lives belong to us and to no one else. If there is an Armageddon in our planet’s future, I think it will be because our God is righteous and the power of life belongs to Him alone.