The Gospel Is for Baby-Killers

Patti WithersArticles27 Comments

A couple of years ago I sat on a panel of Christian post-abortive men and women. “Silent No More” is an annual event hosted on a university campus by a pro-life organization in our city. It gives students the opportunity to hear about the aftermath of abortion from a Christian’s perspective. The woman I sat next to was amazing. Although she had three abortions, she spoke openly about her sin of murder and confidently about the forgiveness she had received through the shed blood of Jesus. Afterwards, others who knew her told me about how she would stand outside the abortion clinic every Saturday morning, Bible open, trying to persuade women not to go in. She was brave, strong, well-spoken, and bold.

I am not her.

In fact, the only things we have in common are that we both committed murder and we both found forgiveness in the cross of Jesus. After the Lord saved me, it took me over a decade to speak openly about my abortion. For years the only friend who knew about it was my husband. The shame of what I had done and the fear of being labeled, combined with the overwhelming message of condemnation that I heard from the Christian community kept me silent. And I suspect I’m not alone.

No, I know I’m not alone.

I remember sitting in a living room with some close friends a number of years back, shortly after I had spoken publicly for the first time about my abortion. Those friends knew my story and had heard me speak. Two of the men began talking between themselves about abortion, and one of them said, “I just don’t know how someone could do that.” I just sat silently. What could I say? I don’t know how I could have done that either.

It’s been hard to be on social media for the last three weeks. Scroll quickly past that image, don’t click on that video, hide that from my news feed, stop following that person. I’m not against the outrage; I’m outraged. I pray for the defunding of Planned Parenthood; what they are doing is evil. I want people to know about the horrors of abortion; I want it to stop. But something has been missing from the barrage, at least in my newsfeed and in my life.

It’s the Gospel.

As a post-abortive Christian woman, I’m tempted to accept the condemnation I often feel as my price to pay for what I did. I’m also tempted to accept the lack of care that I often feel as a consequence. I should find a way to be okay with the graphic pictures and the lone blog post reaching out to the post-abortive person in my newsfeed. I should just grin and bear the fact that very few friends have asked me how I’m holding up in the midst of this tidal wave. When others begin talking about “those” people, I should sit silently and take my licks. Sin has consequences, and some sins have life-long consequences. Some scarlet letters are meant to be worn for a lifetime.

But that’s a lie.

If you’re reading this as a post-abortive person, let me tell you some good news. I know that I need to hear some. The good news is that the Gospel is for baby killers. When Jesus came to bear our sins in His body on that tree He bore them all. There is no scarlet letter for you – or for me. Christ wore that scarlet letter and died so that it could be taken away forever. We are forgiven – and not only that – we are loved. The Father set His love on us before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:3-10). Our omniscient, sovereign Father, who ordained all of our days before one of them came to be (Psalm 139:16), loves us. When the Father looks at us, He sees His beloved Son. Because of that we are beloved.

If you’re a Christian reading this who has never been a party to an abortion, praise God. No seriously, praise God! Praise God that He spared you that sin, and praise God that He saved you from all of your sins, for “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). May I humbly ask that you remember us in the midst of your zeal to end abortion? Maybe a pause to think about who will see what you post before you post it, maybe a phone call or a text to see how your post-abortive friend is holding up. If we truly believe that the Gospel is the answer to all of the ills we feel personally and societally, shouldn’t our news feeds and our mouths be as full of the Gospel as they are with the horrors of abortion?

27 Comments on “The Gospel Is for Baby-Killers”

  1. I love you Patti.! And I have thought about you in the midst of this barrage of social media. I’m sorry for not checking in on you. But I’m so thankful that you are speaking the glorious truth of the Gospel to yourself, and to other women in a way that only you can. Praise the Lord who loved you and saved you, and takes away all our guilty stains. I’m praying women will read your testimony and come to the feet of Jesus.

  2. A lovely lady at my church had an abortion when she was a college student. She spoke about it at an event and later we were talking privately and she told me about how hard it is when people refer to out of wed-lock moms and say, “Well, at least she didn’t do the worst thing”

    I’m sure I’ve said that before and I’m sure someone I didn’t know has had an abortion was near-by.

    That’s the thing that’s tough to balance for me. I want abortion to end. I want people to understand how wrong it is. But I want to be loving and kind to the women who have gone through that.

    1. Thanks for the comment Melody. Praise God for your desire to seek a loving balance regarding this issue. Keep asking God to grant you wisdom in how best to do that in each situation – He will give it to you! (James 1:5)

      1. Hi Patti! I feel honored to be able to read your story. Also I feel sad & embarrassed for how some Christians (like your ‘friends’ in the living room that time) & possibly like myself at some point, have treated post abortive women. Forgive us. I pray that the whole Body becomes quickly more sensitive & loving, like Jesus, about this. You telling your story has helped….and will continue to help. Thank you! ♡

    2. Hi Melody…this is also a burden for me. Praying for the whole Body to be more sensitive…..more like Jesus!

  3. We need to translate this in Spanish! Thank you for sharing Patti , it brings peace and love to many others, and remind us that we have a God that is so merciful and forgiving!

  4. Great article! Curious to know what you meant by “Praise God that he spared you that sin”?


    1. Hi Sandra – thanks for the comment and question. I simply meant that God ordains of permits all things that happen. He is sovereign over all things, and is working out all things according to his will. So according to His will and His good plan one person may be permitted to commit a certain sin, while another would not. Not surprisingly, Pastor John Piper explains it far better than I can! Here is a link to a brief article by him that may be helpful. Blessings!

  5. Thank you Patti,
    I know this will help many women, I have been having trouble also, it has opened up a lot of old wounds but I remember who said he forgave me when I asked.

  6. Thanks, Patti, for words we needed to be reminded of! You are truly a wonderful model and I thank God for you, your friendship, your tender heart, and your ministries for our Lord. (Bill would be so proud and pleased with your strength,) Love you!

    1. You’re welcome Christiana! But I am a very fearful person, and any strength I have is purely God-given. Our boldness comes from him – keep praying!

  7. Thank you for allowing the Spirit to lead you to speak truth…you are not alone sister…
    May souls be saved and our God be glorified…

  8. Wow. This was really encouraging to me, Patti!
    I have been praying for you often the last month, specifically that you would be encouraged. I didn’t know why, other than that God had brought you to my mind. And now I know why! And it is a HUGE encouragement to me to continue to pray for others too. I will continue to pray that the Gospel will be encouraging and comforting to your soul.

    Thank you so much for sharing!
    God is so good and uses all things to His glory!

    1. Thank you Kali – it is very encouraging to know that the Lord has been bringing me to your mind, and that you’ve been praying! I’m glad that you were encouraged too. Blessings sister!

  9. oh my soul! ?Thank you for this! I wish I had your courage! This message needs shouted from the mountain tops!

  10. I’m having a hard time understanding what you are saying… We are supposed to consider the person who may have considered a sin when we post links decrying that sin? Even if Scripture decries it? So if I speak against theft, I have to carefully consider how many people who may have shoplifted before I post? Shouldn’t that make me even more desirous of posting? Many may not actually find their sin of shoplifting shameful. Maybe I have many friends sporting the hashtag “#shoutyourshoplifting.” Maybe the consequence of doing a sin and repenting of it really IS having to fight shame for the rest of your life, not because others are putting it on you, just because your own conscience does. I know I have sins I regret to this day. But that is MY fight.

    Yes, I want to be mindful of what I say, and especially how I say it. But people posting truths about abortion are fighting a culture that views it as blase, as legal, as no big deal… that often requires frank simple statements about something’s wrongness or rightness. And those who’ve sinned in that way very well could be the first in line to proclaim that sin’s harm– because they’ve experienced it first-hand.

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