Supporting the Post-Abortive Woman During a Pandemic

By Jessica Russo
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Why do we make everything so complicated?  A few weeks ago, I was planning a project for work and had a moment of panic.  “How in the world am I going to pull this campaign together in time AND have measurable success?!?”  Positivity is one of my top strengths, so I was surprised by the frustration I felt in this moment and immediately took it to God.  And then the revelation came! As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, my co-workers were dispersed across the DFW Metroplex working from their homes.  My normal had been disrupted, and I didn’t have my team to collaborate with and work through the obstacles. I was frustrated and felt isolated! My focus had been centered on what wasn’t working instead of lifting my eyes to search out a solution, which was preventing me from seeing any viable plan or strategy.

Right now, there are millions of post-abortive women hurting and all they can see are obstacles. Their normal has been disrupted by the current pandemic and many women who have experienced abortion are being triggered by their surrounding situations of job losses, strained relationships, isolation, stretched finances, homeschooling children, or the fear of becoming sick.  They are searching for something, sometimes anything, that will numb the pain even for a moment.  She may attempt to mask her pain by self-medicating with drugs and alcohol.  She might try to fill the emptiness and loneliness in her heart with unhealthy dating relationships or casual intimate encounters.  It’s very possible that she is trying to protect her abortion secret by keeping friendships and family relationships at a safe distance so no one can see her.  She may even be isolating to the extreme because she just can’t risk the possibility of hurt being on the other side of her front door.  These women need our help now!

What support can we offer in the midst of a pandemic to a woman who has experienced abortion?  This is where we make it complicated.  Similar to how I shut down when trying to figure out my new work normal; we can seriously over-complicate helping others find hope and healing in the midst of this pandemic.  It can seem overwhelming to know where to start while self-doubt fills our heads and hearts.  This is when we have to rely on our Heavenly Father’s wisdom.  So, when we start to go to a place of doubt, let’s reposition our hearts towards God’s heart for truth and direction.

Truth #1: You are chosen and loved by God – John 3:16

Truth #2: You are called to tell a lost and dying world of His good news – Mark 16:15

Truth #3: You are equipped by your God-given calling – Romans 9:11-12

Truth #4: You don’t have to be afraid; God is with you always!  – Joshua 1:9

Since we believe God’s word is true, we don’t have to complicate it.  We can step out in faith, trusting him as we help bring healing to women who have experienced the pain of abortion.  Here are a few ways that you can start:

  1. Pray!  Ask God to be with those that have experienced the pain of abortion, to bring them peace and comfort.  Seek God for how you can help bring His healing to these women. Ask God to stir your heart for them, and that your heart would truly break for what breaks His heart.
  2. Reach out to your local pro-life Pregnancy Center. These vital community resources do much more than offer free pregnancy tests.  Many of them offer abortion healing support groups.  Are they holding virtual groups right now or need to be offering them, but they are limited on their knowledge of technology?  Could you or someone you know help them get them set up? Call and ask how you can get involved.
  3. Do you know someone that has experienced abortion and is hurting? Encourage them to reach out to SupportAfterAbortion.com. This is a safe place to find a healing group that best fits their needs.
  4. Have you experienced abortion and since then received healing?  Offer one-on-one or group healing under the covering of your church over the phone, through video chat or in-person according to your state orders.  Some really great resources are Forgiven & Set Free, Surrendering The Secret, Transforming Your Story, and Unraveled Roots.

The physical doors of the church may be closed but the CHURCH isn’t closed!  The building may not be operating in the same capacities as just a few short weeks ago but the body is working overtime!  You and I are the church. Remember, church isn’t a physical place; it’s the cumulative body of every believer on the planet working together to bring the hope of Jesus to our hurting world and that sounds pretty powerful to me!

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About the Author

Jessica Russo

Jessica Russo is the Donor Relationship Manager at Embrace, a non-profit organization with the goal of inspiring and equipping the church to minister to women facing an unplanned pregnancy and to single moms.  Jessica passionately shares about her testimony of healing from the pain of abortion through public speaking and writing.  She and her husband, Joe, have four children and …

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