person wearing watch near laptop

Her answer stunned me!

Karen Mercer, the woman whom God used to develop the sidewalk counseling ministry in the Pro-Life movement, shared a profound truth with me when I interviewed her on the All Things Podcast. We talked about her new book, Only if God Says So: Finding the Courage to Protect Life in a Pro-Choice World.

When I asked her how we can help a woman who has already made up her mind to abort. Her answer stunned me.

“Don’t try to reason with her about the baby. She has already made up her mind. Talk to her about her future and what that decision will do to her physically, emotionally, mentally… the destruction abortion brings into a life is something not often considered when all that is focused on is the life of the baby.”


I admit I’ve always struggled when the topic of abortion comes up at church and the spotlight is on the fact that it is murder and cannot be justified morally. What about all the ladies sitting in these seats who live with the guilt and regret of a past abortion? How are we helping them?

Last weekend was Sanctity of Life Day.

The word, sanctity, on is defined as:

A sacred thing.

Sacred is defined as regarded with reverence.

Life is a sacred thing and should be regarded with reverence.

The life of the baby AND the life of the mother who is making a decision that will change her life forever. I know this because I am one of those women.

Taking the life of an unborn baby is murder. This is a fact.

But what about the woman who is perhaps backed into a corner and feels she cannot afford another mouth to feed? Or one who has been lied to by Planned Pregnancy that it’s not a life, just a clump of cells? Perhaps even one who’s being forced into the decision by the father of the baby or a parent

How much shame do we heap onto the woman who is making that decision, not realizing that her life will also never be the same. Possibly physically, but most definitely emotionally, mentally and spiritually.

It’s not only one life that is taken in the process, but two. Abortion steals the heart of the mother in a way that murders her soul.

O Lord, help us to have compassion for her!

She may have already decided the fate of the unborn child, but perhaps she would reconsider if she knew what it was going to mean for HER. lists symptoms commonly associated with post-abortion syndrome:

  • Tearfulness
  • Mood changes including anger, sadness, grief, or numbness
  • Depression
  • Guilt, regret, or denial of the abortion
  • Flashbacks
  • Nightmares and disrupted sleep
  • Thoughts of suicide
  • Substance use
  • Relationship issues
  • Decreased self-esteem
  • Fear of future pregnancy

The pro-choice community denies the reality of these psychological symptoms but I know first hand, and have known many others, who’ve experienced long term negative effects.


As we ponder the sanctity of life, may we ask God to open our eyes to the women who’ve been devastated by this decision, in an effort to bring healing and wholeness through Jesus, regarding with reverence the life of the woman whose pain is real.


Thanks for spending some time with me today.


Athena Dean Holtz
Welcome, I'm Athena!

I start each day by tithing the first hour to the Lord in prayer, reading the word, doing word studies of the Text, and asking God how I can live out what I am reading. This time is usually met with meditation on devotionals that are usually written by dead guys like Oswald Chambers, CS Lewis, Charles Spurgeon, AW Tozer, and Andrew Murray.

Right now, I’m reading a daily devotional with a friend called Tozer on the Almighty God for my focus for the day. It's fun to see individually what pulls us in to spur one another on to good deeds!

The Bible is filled with action steps to walk out in practical and intentional ways. This sets my day in motion to walk it out! I hope this is your heart, too.

Consider this a personal invitation to join me in this journey!

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