One of our national Love Life missionaries recently asked how to handle the sad situation of a mom who chose life over her original intention to abort, and then miscarried. Unfortunately, this is not uncommon. Anyone who is a sidewalk counselor for very long will likely encounter this grievous outcome.
First, Grieve with this Mother
I would first of all express grief and sorrow for her and tell her how very sad that is. I would remind her that she can take comfort in the fact that she did not take her child’s life and that will not be on her conscience or soul.
“Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn” (Romans 12:15).
Offer Comfort with Biblical Truth
I would remind her of the section of the story of David and Bathsheba where he says the child will not return to him but he will go to the child. In other words, babies go to heaven and I feel very strongly that that is true.
“But now he has died; why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.””
2 Samuel 12:23 NASB1995
Gauging the Situation, Share the Gospel as Ultimate Hope
After you tell that story you can say that you would love to share the truth of the gospel with her because one day she could meet that baby again in heaven where all things will be made new and there will be no more suffering or sorrow. The Bible tells us when we put our trust and lives in Jesus, we will be with Him for all eternity. I paint the picture of her bundling that child again in her arms.
Be Prepared for Self-Recrimination
She may ask why God took that child and was He punishing her. This is a common response I have heard since many women feel deep remorse and guilt for having considered abortion. Assure her that God would have been rejoicing when she overcame evil and made a choice for life. She did the right thing when she chose life. She may also question God for taking the child’s life after she did the right thing. None of us know fully why God allows terrible things to happen but we know that all sin grieves His heart and this is a sinful fallen world.
“In the same way, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.””
Could Be Opportunity for Sexual Purity Outside of Marriage Message
If she is unmarried and you have not yet shared the purity message with her, you could gently maybe mention how God‘s Commandments are always to protect us. That’s why it’s so important if Jesus is our Lord to show our love and faith to Him by obeying all His commandments. That does not mean that life will not have struggles but it does mean that God is there with us in the midst of the struggles.
Always Consider She Could Be Lying to Cover an Abortion
Of course she could be lying. It is not helpful to call her a liar, especially without proof; sometimes, though, inconsistencies in her story can indicate she IS lying. If you are pretty sure she is lying, I would focus on the nature of abortion being deeply grieving to God. This is tricky, since you certainly don’t want to pile grief upon grief. If she doesn’t come to repentance over the sin of abortion, she will not heal or repair her relationship with God.
Memorial Bracelets Can Show Your Concern and the Value of that Child
Several internet vendors sell memorial bracelets or necklaces for moms who have miscarried or lost a young child. Sending the grieving mother a gift of this nature speaks to many important things. First, you are affirming the value of that child and the magnitude of such a loss. Secondly, you are affirming the truth that a little human being loved and created by God has passed from this Earth. Thirdly, you are letting her know she is not alone in her suffering.
Bring the Hope of God into the Situation
It is sometimes in our darkest moments that we are most open to the truth of Jesus. Again, I think we need to be careful in how we bring God into the discussion. Sometimes when people are in deep mourning, especially if they do not have a saving relationship with the Lord, mention of God can bring more sorrow and bitterness. However, as the Holy Spirit leads and opens doors, knowing the truth that the suffering on this earth will be replaced by an eternity of joy when we trust Jesus as our savior can be the only comfort that helps her through this sadness.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”