Friday, January 21, 2011

Hope after Abortion

Thus says the LORD: "A voice is heard in Ramah, lamentation and bitter weeping. Rachel is weeping for her children; she refuses to be comforted for her children, because they are not."
Jeremiah 31:15

That is the part about having an abortion that Planned Parenthood does not tell women.  They leave the women -- a large percentage of whom have been coerced or pressured into having an abortion they do not want -- to find this part out for themselves.  Planned Parenthood does not like pro-life activists publishing images of aborted babies; but those are just some of the images that women who have had abortions see every time they close their eyes.

That is why Rachel's Vineyard came into being: to bring healing and reconciliation to women who have had abortions, and who have never been able to forgive themselves.  Rachel's Vineyard holds retreat weekends for women who have had abortions -- and also for the fathers and grandparents of aborted babies.  The retreat includes Scripture exercises, counseling, spiritual guidance from clergy, and a memorial service for the babies of the retreatants.  There are many who say that these weekends have changed their lives.  From Rachel's Vineyard's website, some comments from participants in the retreat:
For 12 years after my abortion I suffered in silence, grieving the loss of my child. My life became a living hell, and I didn't care if I lived or died. In October of 1997 all that changed. I attended a Rachel's Vineyard Retreat and began my journey of healing. Not only did God remove my fear, He has also allowed me to have tremendous love and support from my family and friends. I am now able to carry the message of hope and healing to others who have suffered after abortion.

How can I describe that in 48 hours, I became reconciled with my Heavenly Father? The process of healing can only begin through forgiveness and acknowledgement of my choice to abort my precious baby. And now, I have the greatest gift of all: the right to acknowledge, name, baptize, grieve, and give dignity to my first beloved child.

I took my daughter to England for an abortion. I thought that I was saving her from a life of misery. How wrong I was. My daughter has never been the same since. She began to drink heavily and take drugs. Her life is in a mess. When I heard of Rachel's Vineyard I knew that I had to come. I was allowed to share my pain in an emotionally safe environment. I was allowed to grieve the loss of my grandchild, and express the shame, the guilt and despair which have been such a heavy burden to carry. I now feel so much peace in my heart. I know that God has forgiven me. I have a new hope in my heart.

This retreat has been the best experience of my life. I wish that I had attended this retreat sooner. I was afraid to come because I had 3 abortions. I was afraid I would be judged that I had killed 3 children. I felt safe, loved and accepted. I was finally able to forgive myself and release my hatred toward God. You must come in order to finally heal. Please come.

For 24 years I suffered from my abortions. I thought time would heal all pain, but for years my pain remained. I lived with guilt, shame, depression, and grief. After 24 years I sought relief at a Rachel's Vineyard retreat. There I found total forgiveness in my Lord and Savior, and found peace for the first time in years. I can now remember my aborted children with fond memories and love. I am free from the guilt of my sin. The memorial service gave me the opportunity to pay my respects to my children. The respect I felt they never received. It helped me to lay them to rest in the arms of the Lord.

I have been through 14 years of therapy and anti-depressants. I've confessed my abortion a hundred times. Just when I thought I could take the pain no longer, I found Rachel's Vineyard. This weekend literally saved my life.
If you or someone you know are one of the millions who have been wounded by abortion, take heart.  There is help.
Cast away from you all the transgressions which you have committed against me, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of any one, says the Lord GOD; so turn, and live.
Ezekiel 18:31-32

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