Lisa Rowe, CEO of Support After Abortion, sits down with author, speaker and founder of SheFoundHisGrace.org, Serena Dyksen, about how compassion and collaboration can increase the number of men and women who seek abortion healing, and heal generations of wounds within families.
At the age of 14, Serena was sexually assaulted by a family member. She then found out she was pregnant as a result of that assault. Her family confused, angry and lost then took Serena to have an abortion.
After, being traumatized from the rape and her abortion, Serena utilized dangerous coping mechanisms such as substance abuse to numb the pain, shame and guilt. Then one night, she broke down and asked for God’s help, and in the midst of tears and prayers, she found his grace.
From this moment on, God’s grace has enabled Serena to boldly tell her story and has turned her pain into purpose. She founded SheFoundHisGrace.org, and meets thousands of men and women where they are in their abortion healing process, and with love introduces them to communities of men and women who are also struggling, so that together everyone can begin to heal.
Lisa and Serena both agree that meeting people where they are is the key to start the healing process. “If you go at people yelling, they will shrink away. Then we have done more harm than good.” However, if we remember to imitate Jesus, and use love to relate with people, then those in need of help will see that our intention is to help heal and they will be open to this help.
Healing the Generational Wounds of Abuse and the Family Pain from Abortion
Lisa states that, “we now have four generations of men and women who have lived with abortion being legal.” That is four generations with not just abortion wounds, but unhealed wounds that can lead to making the decision of abortion.
Serena’s family has experienced this generational pattern of pain firsthand. Serena’s mother was also sexually assaulted at a young age by a family member. That wound for her, was never healed. Fast forward, to when Serena experienced her sexual assault, pregnancy then her abortion, and the unhealed wound in Serena’s mom was triggered. She saw her daughter’s panic and did not know where to turn or how to react, and when that vulnerability was taken advantage of by the abortion clinic, the decision was made to have Serena have an abortion.
In this moment, Serena’s family needed compassion, counseling and support not an abortion.
Healing the pain of abuse or abortion, is very hard and can be very uncomfortable. It is important though, that those called to serve others impacted by abortion, compassionately reach out to those in need of healing so that we can stop generational patterns of pain from happening in future years.
How the Pro-Life Movement can increase Capacity for those who need abortion healing
Capacity can be defined as seeing and encouraging more options-based, healing programs. Lisa and Serena agree that the key to increasing capacity starts with compassionately meeting people where they are, and by recognizing that God does not judge us based on our sins, and neither should we. The moment we present with condemnation, judgment or non approval we alienate people, and convey a hurtful message of, “God meets me in my mess everyday, but I refuse to meet you in yours.”
Compassionately serving those impacted by abortion means paying attention, listening, understanding their story, and most importantly always communicating back to them with messages of hope and healing.
After people learn to listen with compassion, they then must learn how to communicate with compassion. Serena recommends organizations like churches learn the necessary skills to have these conversations that will begin making a great impact to begin abortion healing. Places, like church, that are supposed to be welcoming and safe for everyone have very few conversations around the topics of abuse, or abortion. They need to equip themselves with the tools to comfortably start these conversations, so that more people come forward for healing. As Lisa states, “We know men and women in churches are hurting. If clergymen are not comfortable speaking about abortion at the pulpit, then they need to invite someone who is and learn from them to increase our capacity.”
Support After Abortion has started to increase the capacity for healing within the Pro-Life movement by establishing the Men’s Task Force. Men who have grown up without fathers, do not know how to be fathers, and therefore may choose abortion for that reason. The Mens Task Force will cultivate an environment for men to come forward and seek not only their abortion healing, but healing of their wounds as well.
To learn more about being a catalyst for change within the Pro-Life movement, please register for Support After Abortion’s free Virtual Conference, March 26th-March27th. If you or someone you know has been impacted by abortion please know you are not alone. Please contact us our Hopeline at 844-289-HOPE (4673), or visit us at https://supportafterabortion.com.