I am so very grateful for the gift of all my children. They have each made me a better person for having known them, and having had the privilege of being their mom.

Each is unique with their own gifts, all of which I have benefited from. From my older son’s intellect and amazing sense of humor, to my younger son’s courage and strength and calming ability in any storm, they have both taught me so much. I am so very blessed to have them, but today, I want to focus on my son Joshua.

I aborted Joshua when I was a teen. It is through him that I have learned the most.

I cannot help but think about how I, like Peter, denied Christ in the gift of life he had given me in my son. I do not deny him anymore. Joshua is a part of my daily life as I meet him in the Eucharistic body of Jesus, who unites heaven and earth. My son whom I have never met, but I know very deeply. Through his life that never was in this world, Joshua saved me. A paradox of our faith and a testament to the amazing ways of God, and so I would like to share some of the things I have learned from Joshua.

1) Patience

In a world where all too often we want what we want when we want it I needed to learn that healing was in God’s time not mine, and he knew better than I did what I needed. I needed to accept that I was where I was supposed to be as long as I was still working towards healing. I learned healing was in doing the will of God each day.

2) Trust

How could I trust a God I could not see when the people who were supposed to love me abandoned me and coerced me into abortion? I had to learn to trust God one step at a time. Instead of not trusting I decided to trust until I found I could not trust him…that day never came. As my relationship with God grew so did my trust. Even in darkness I learned that he was there loving me, guiding me.

3) Courage

I was always painfully shy and quiet. Working through my healing and looking at the way I had lived my life took courage. The fears that paralyzed me had to be faced with each new step I took. I learned my courage came from not from me, but from God.

4) Purity

Through my growth in faith I learned the value of purity, and chastity. I could see how my life style was hurting not only me but those around me. My desire to live an unchaste life at my own whim had cost the life of my unborn child. Instead of a commitment of love, I used sex in the wrong way. My faith brought me to an understanding of the beauty and dignity of sex in marriage.

5) Forgiveness

I had to choose to want to forgive, especially my dad who coerced me to abort. It was not a onetime decision, but one that I had to make repeatedly. It was not easy; I had a lot of resentment and anger towards my dad that would resurface every time something happened between us. It took time but I did forgive, and in the end God chose me to lead my father to the sacraments. A beautiful testament to God’s faithfulness.

6) Humility

I never understood what humility was. I always thought it meant putting yourself on the bottom of everything, beating yourself up. That is not what humility is. It is seeing yourself in truth. Recognizing that we are all sinners in need of God’s mercy. That we are all capable of any sin but for the grace of God. It is a relief to know this, because when I sin I am not so shocked. That does not mean I do not try to avoid sin, but in this life I know I will always sin because I am imperfect. The beautiful thing is the story does not end there, for God is always waiting to forgive in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, giving me a new start once again.

7) Selflessness

Healing from abortion taught me that life is about more than me. It showed me the joys of being there for others, taking the focus off myself and putting it on God.

8) Love

Most of all my healing has taught me what true love is, because it has brought me to know Jesus Christ. True, I often fail at loving, but I try. It takes a dying to self, to my wants. Love is not self-centered but other-centered. It is often painful and sometimes can feel like a crucifixion, but nothing can beat it in bringing joy and peace to a soul.

God Brings Good Out of Evil

My son Joshua, through his death, brought me to Christ.

I know some may worry that an article like this suggests that abortion is okay because it can bring good. I am not saying that. Abortion is terrible and brings much pain and suffering. However, I am saying that God is bigger than abortion. Despite this horrific act, God can turn it to good. He can free people from even this indescribable pain and bring them to his love and mercy, and he uses the very thing we rejected, our children, to do it.

I cannot think of a greater privilege than the gift of motherhood. Sadly, there seems to be a growing disregard for it in our society. Children have become commodities to fit our needs, and to be kept or discarded according to our will depending on if they are “wanted” or not.

Instead of protecting our children, many women are taking to the streets to protect what they see as their right to kill the unborn. Some even do it joyfully. In their hearts, they are blinded and deadened to what they are doing.

One day they will come to find out what they are missing in the precious gift of life they have worked so hard to destroy. It is a terrible day of reckoning, but even during all of this, God can still bring good. In the most evil and horrific circumstances, he is still there loving us.

This Mother’s Day I pray that all those suffering the pain of abortion will embrace their children in the Lord. That they allow his healing balm to envelop them through the gift of their child, which he desires them to embrace in this life and the next.