“For it was you who formed my inward parts … My frame was not hidden from you.” – Psalm 139:13-15 (Catholic Women’s Devotional Bible NRSV)
The following was written by Louise Perrotta and is from “The Tradition” in the Catholic Women’s Devotional Bible (NRSV). It’s so beautifully written that I had to share it:
“I’ll never know what her first word would have been … whether she would have looked like me … what our relationship would have been like … what she might have done in her life.”
Women who have had abortions and suffer bitter regrets over what might have been are often caught in a downward spiral of black despair. What have I done? There is no forgiveness for me. But Scripture says the exact opposite: “The Lord is merciful and gracious … He does not deal with us according to our sins” (Psalm 103:8-10). Women who seek forgiveness from the God of unfailing love will surely find it – and will also find help to deal with the anguish that is an inescapable fruit of abortion.
This anguish is no small thing, because abortion is no small thing. The decision often made hastily and under duress, is irrevocable; there is no way back. Like a rosebud nipped before it can bloom and display its beauty, new life has been snuffed out, and the world has been deprived of … what?
From the instant of conception, the child in the womb is in a relationship with God. Hidden to everyone else, the child is cherished by its Creator, who lovingly and “wonderfully” fashions it (Psalm 139:13-16). Each unborn child’s death is first and foremost God’s loss.
Like all violations of the fifth commandment, “You shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13), abortion opposes God’s creative action. It ends one phase of his special relationship with a human being who is sacred, called into existence by God as a unique person made in his image and likeness. The relationship continues, but not in the way God originally intended.
This child should have been born … should have had a chance to grow, to become aware of God’s love, to choose and respond. Love reciprocated and returned wholeheartedly, love overflowing back to God and to his people in a life of joyful service – this was part of God’s call to the child.
Human beings grieve over someone they never got to know. God grieves over someone he knows intimately. What has the world lost in losing an unborn child? God sees and grieves.