It’s a story I’ve never shared with you here in this place. It’s one I’ve shared as a speaker – one I’ve shared with other women when I knew my story would bring them hope.
But never here.
Maybe because God knew my “such a time as this” would be right now as our country wages war in the abortion debate. Right now, when the realities have come to a boiling point as the state of New York passed a bill and other states attempt to pass similar bills all allowing doctors the legal right to perform abortions all the way up until birth. Actually … even after birth.
And as I write these words, my heart aches for a world that’s been deceived – for the woman who will walk by choice into a brokenness she cannot now perceive – and babies who will not only never live to walk out the life that could be, but may tragically suffer in their last moments of life.[bctt tweet=”As New York passes and other states work to pass bills legalizing full term #abortions my heart aches for a world that’s been deceived. This is my story …” username=”lori_schumaker”]
This is my story …
I was 17 when I walked into a clinic and made the legal choice to have an abortion.
I remember the day just as vividly now as I did 32 years ago. Every detail stays in this memory of mine that so often seems to fail me in my everyday life. I forget what I told my kids a few hours ago, but I forget nothing from that day.
Planned Parenthood gave me a rundown of my options, yet their counseling lead me to see the logic of an abortion considering my life situation.
Logic wasn’t drowning out the still small voice within the beat of my heart, though. As long as I remembered, I dreamed of someday being a mom. I loved children and wanted this baby. But I was scared.
I knew what I would face when I told my parents. Shame had already consumed me. Could it be any worse?
As I looked into their eyes seeing disappointment and grief in one set and raging anger in the other, I knew life would never be the same. The choice was made for me. There wasn’t an option. I would not embarrass the family that way nor would I mar the record I’d worked so hard to achieve.
We scheduled the abortion.
I didn’t know Jesus then as I do today. I believed in an all-knowing God who lived in heaven. Not one who loved me beyond measure and would never leave my side. I didn’t know His Word other than the stories that many children grow up with. It wasn’t as though I came from a church speaking sin and death and condemnation into my life. Honestly, no one brought up abortion as a sin. The very few who knew my secret explained it away as a life that didn’t yet exist.
But still … there lived shame.
Shamed by others because I broke the rules and had sex. Shamed because I was dumb enough to get pregnant.
But that wasn’t the shame eating away at my soul that I took with me that morning I walked into the clinic.
It wasn’t what had my stomach in knots and my heart tore to shreds as I looked at the many women lining the waiting room.
I remember being called back.
The nurse with a mole on her chin that I couldn’t seem to stop staring at.
The many women walking in and out. All ages. All ethnicities. And I wondered how each one came to be in this place. What was the story behind each woman making this choice?
The sterile room, the equipment, and the voice within that kept telling me to run.
The room seemed dark. The vacuum loudly whirred and then there was pain. It wasn’t quick and I kept wondering if I should scream and beg them to stop. But I didn’t and the heartbeat of a child within me stopped beating.
In that moment regret found its home within me. The tears wouldn’t stop. Grief filled my entire being. Confusion swirled and brokenness clung tightly to me. A brokenness that would lodge itself into every crevice of my being for many years to come.
“My spirit is crushed, and my life is nearly snuffed out. The grave is ready to receive me.” -Job 17:1 NLT[bctt tweet=”In that moment regret found its home within me. The tears wouldn’t stop. Grief filled my entire being. Confusion swirled and brokenness clung tightly to me. A brokenness that would lodge itself into every crevice of my being for many years to come.” username=”lori_schumaker”]
I’d fixed the problem. Erasing the shame from my family, life could go back to normal. I could continue my basketball career, graduate with honors, and go onto college just as I’d planned.
Only life never went back to normal. Ever.
The Abortion Debate from My Unique Perspective
Today I am a woman who brings to the table many perspectives of motherhood. It provides me an angle from which I can uniquely view abortion.
I see abortion through the eyes of a young girl afraid and confused.
Then, I see it years later through the miscarriage of our child.
I once again see it through the lens of birth and life as a biological mom of two children whom I adore.
And, finally, God gives me one more perspective as the mom of a beautiful little girl. Because her biological mom chose life, I have the honor of experiencing the miracle of adoption. I’ve witnessed what God does when we choose life.
“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart …” -Jeremiah 1:5 NLT
Please Do Not Hear Judgement[bctt tweet=”What I share with you today is not in judgement of the woman who feels abortion is her only choice. There is no condemnation lurking beneath the surface of my words nor my heart. ” username=”lori_schumaker”]
What I share with you today is not in judgement of the woman who feels abortion is her only choice. There is no condemnation lurking beneath the surface of my words nor my heart. Instead, compassion and empathy for her rises up. I want desperately to save her from regret – save her from cycles of pain that will surely come. And I simply want to tell her, abortion is not her only choice. There is an alternative. There is a way through this.
My story is a plea asking her to search within herself and trust the God who loves her and calls her wonderful. Trust Him to make a way. Trust Him to make beauty from the ashes she is facing.
I want to save her heart from the ravaging effects abortion will have on her life. And I want us to pray together against the enemy – to silence his lies and still the confusion around abortion.[bctt tweet=”I want us to pray together against the enemy – to silence his lies and still the confusion around abortion.” username=”lori_schumaker”]
Truth is truth.
There is no way around it – no matter how creative we get or how desperately we want to change the narrative. We can lay legal terms around when life becomes life all we want. But those legalities will not determine what our soul already knows.
We, as women, were created and given the gift of bearing life within us. God didn’t give us that gift without the wisdom to recognize that life. Children are a gift from God – a gift we cannot ignore or pretend is not real. Our soul knows the truth.
God Loves Us
Many want to say religious zealots are the only ones that feel any regret or long-term emotional damage. But it’s just not true.
It wasn’t religion that convicted me with regret. No. That’s all backwards. It was God who loved me beyond measure and rescued me from a deep pit of pain.
God, who forgave me. Who gave me a fresh start and never stopped loving me – even though I went off course more times than I can count. With patience, He rescued me again and again when I’d take another exit ramp off His path.
The abortion debate is loud and angry right now.[bctt tweet=”The abortion debate is loud and angry right now. ” username=”lori_schumaker”]
Our country is being deceived and confused by the enemy. Somehow, we’ve come to believe life within the womb doesn’t matter.
Friend, it does.
There’s another way through this. Trust the One who loves us – trust Him to make a way for when there seems to be no other way.
“I will go before you and level the mountains; I will shatter the doors of bronze and cut through the bars of iron.” -Isaiah45:2 AMP
**** Want to make a difference? Join my friend, Lindsey Zitzmann, as she hosts A CALL TO ACTION: Fast and Pray for the Unborn. Lindsey is a voice for the orphan and is currently waiting for a child to be placed in their family.
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