She sat holding her baby with tears streaming down her face. As the nurse explained the hospital admitting procedures, she heard not a word. After being told by the doctor that her baby had to be admitted to the hospital for possible meningitis, her mind left the office, unwilling to face the result of previous sin that continued to haunt her.
Her mind took her back a few years, when she walked into the clinic with mixed emotions all tied up neatly in a bow of denial…
She did not allow herself to be swayed but stayed the course of fear. When fear is at the helm there is no telling what measures you will take to satisfy that beast. She can not blame youth, ignorance, or lack of companionship. She allowed fear to overtake her and dictate her actions. Fear drove her to the clinic that day to put an end to a reality she was unready to face. She could not bring herself to say the word. Abortion. She could not bring herself to read the word. Abortion. Yet she brought herself to have a procedure done. Abortion.
Sitting in the Abortion Clinic’s waiting room caused her to use great effort not to think about where she was and what she was about to do. She was raised in a Christian home. She had committed herself to a life honoring to God. How could she so easily turn away from her bible and turn to fear? She asked herself this question many times but never waited for an answer. Even now, as she sat in the waiting room, she did not allow herself to answer.
Her throat felt like it was going to close as her name was called. She just wanted this over with. It felt like a dream and she had hoped that upon waking she would be able to dismiss it as easily. She laid on the table only thinking that she wanted things just to go back to normal. This memory could not be forged in her mind. She grew angry at every sound and move that would alter this haziness into a clear picture.
“Ma’am, are you okay…will your husband be meeting you at the hospital?”
The nurse’s question brought back to the present in a jolt. She nodded her head yes and grabbed her diaper bag and papers the nurse was handing her. She was now on her way to the hospital to admit her baby for testing.
September. She would never forget the date, September 15th. That was the day she had her “procedure”. Still unable to call it by name, she regrettably remembers the details, even the hazy ones. She remembers what she wore, the face of the nurse, even the weather: 56 degrees and partly cloudy. September held another significance, it was the month her new baby was born. The irony haunted her as much as her guilt. This twisted and turned in her head until she was convinced that the blood on her hands would require justice. Where was the justice for her baby? Her baby was murdered and the murderer walked free only to live an alternate life with a husband and new baby. How can such an act go unpunished? Simply, it could not, it would not. God surely would take this baby away as payment for her previous baby. She was convinced. The irrationality of these thoughts were not questioned. She lived in fear unknowing when and where she would be sentenced for her crime.
She was in a daze as drove to the hospital, admitted her baby and sat in her baby’s hospital room. She allowed the nurses and doctors to believe she was being an over emotional first time mom. She would never reveal her true feelings behind her tears. She knew she did not deserve the kindness and comfort offered to her by the nursing staff.
Her husband arrived and jolted her back into reality again. The nurse explained to him the situation and the tests that would have to be performed. Yet, he was distracted by the reaction of his wife. She felt this distraction and it made her uneasy. She knew that was aware that something else was going on in her head. He was unaware of her irrational thoughts but he knew her reaction was beyond the current situation. Perhaps one day she would tell him how her sin resulted in the death of their little baby girl.
She felt relief and mercy at the news that her baby did not have meningitis and would be fine. In an instant, that relief was replaced by the feeling that justice would continue to hunt her. If not now, when?
Years passed, and her baby girl grew into a healthy beautiful child. While every September birthday reminded her of a September death, she was able to focus more on the joy and less on the pain. Her past now only whispered its intent to seek justice.
Her underlying guilt and unresolved feelings, continued to haunt her throughout several years. She felt hunted by justice and haunted by sin. She did not feel the full weight of her guilt on a daily basis. She lived a happy life tempered ever so slightly by guilt. She breathed again without fear and guilt continually entering her lungs.
She needed to find batteries for her daughter’s new light up toy. As she riffled through a drawer she her heart stopped and her throat felt like it would close. In that drawer was her old Bible. She could not bare to look at it much less open it. She felt her past hit her like a freight train. Not since that cool day in September had she been able to pick up her Bible. It only served to remind her that vengeance was coming for her. She knew Jesus died for her sins but she was unwilling to allow him to carry this burden. How could she? This was hers and hers alone to carry…it was what she deserved. She had now forgotten why she opened that drawer to begin with so she slammed it shut and began to walk away.
She remembered. Forgiveness. With tears and a heavy heart that longed to be free, she opened the drawer again. She trembled as she picked it up. She held it close to her and tears began to stream down her face. Her mind took her back to that day in September, back to the clinic, back to her fear and guilt. The emotion was so strong she almost dropped the Bible. Instead she fell to her knees, now unable to control her sobs, she prayed for the first time in years. She prayed that God would forgive her for such a crime. She realized then that God was not hunting her for justice, He was hunting her for forgiveness and love. She was not being punished by an all powerful God, she was punishing herself. She opened the Bible and began to read.
Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28
Years of burden and a heavy heart were needless.
My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: 1 John 2:1
Through the years she had been selfish. She carried her guilt like a badge of courage, like a pain stick, like she was capable of handling the damage. The Bible that caused her such pain to lay eyes on was now a source of comfort and encouragement once again. She was ready to let go and allow Jesus to carry the burden.
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
She remembered love, faith and forgiveness for the first time since she entered the clinic so many years before. She had not learned how to forgive herself so she rejected the forgiveness of Christ. In doing so, she rejected a life with Christ at the helm and instead handed it over to guilt and fear. Her heart was finally free. She was free to be who God intended her to be as a wife, mother, and servant for Christ. She may have had blood on her hands but the blood of Christ is more powerful and covered her.
She rose from her knees restored, redeemed and renewed. Her tears of torment were replaced by tears of joy in the Lord.
Copyright © Richele McFarlin, Moms of Faith, All Rights Reserved