[In late 1983, I founded the New England Christian Action Council (NECAC) when I lived outside Boston, completing my M.Div. at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. The motto of the NECAC was “biblically committed to protecting the unborn” and my initial newsletters were entitled “Contrabortion,” written for grass-roots pro-life Christians. I started my engagement with the subject in a reactive posture, that is, defining and critiquing it. But being committed to the biblical foundations in Genesis 1-3, I grew consistently more proactive across the years. So here are the original unvarnished articles, as my thinking was at the time.]
Contrabortion, Vol. 1, No. 3, November/December, 1984
A Memorial to Zephyr
Ten years ago I had an abortion, and nine years ago I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior. I learned that through repentance I could exchange my sins for his forgiveness, and I did that concerning my abortion. I have walked in the freedom of Christ’s forgiveness ever since — free from guilt and free from shame. I am now a wife and a mother of two, and I’ve learned to protect life, safeguard innocence and cherish my family. Over the years, whenever I thought of abortion, I would thank God for his forgiveness. I never quite understood what that grief was until recently.
Then I read an article in a magazine. A father had written about his nine year old son who had died of cancer. As I read this beautiful memorial I began to weep. The grief of losing a child must be very deep, I thought, and in the next moment I recognized and understood the grief in my own heart. I had lost a child to abortion, and for the first time I was able to fully grieve and mourn the death of my child. Jesus bore our sorrows and our grief that we might have joy. He did not want me to carry this grief any longer — it was time to be healed.
Healing came when I shared this grief with my husband. This was his child too, and together we decided to name our child Zephyr — a gentle wind. My husband suggested I write a song as a memorial to Zephyr, but I didn’t think I could do it. Later, as I was reading the Bible, I found a scripture that helped me, Psalm 27:10: “When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up.” Zephyr’s father and mother had forsaken him, but God did not forsake Zephyr!
Together my husband and I found the child we thought we had lost, safe in God’s hands. Because this was gratifying and healing for my emotions, I was able to write a memorial song for Zephyr. I sing it in honor of his life and with praise to Jesus. Friends can comfort us and doctors can help us. I have been comforted and helped and I thanked God for that. But it was Jesus who healed and restored my soul, and I worship him for that. This is my song for Zephyr:
Zephyr, you’re the gentle wind, the silent breeze in my life. Zephyr, though a gentle wind, you brought a storm in my life.
When you blew into my life, my body felt so strange. If I could change one thing in this world, it’s the day I brought you pain.
Zephyr, you’re the gentle wind, the silent breeze in my life. Zephyr, though a silent sigh, you’re the deepest cry of my life.
When I sought the grace of God, he took away my shame. Though the years have passed, it’s not ‘til today, that you’ve ever had a name.
Zephyr, you’re the gentle wind, the silent breeze in my life. Zephyr, you’re the gentle breeze, the first fruit in my life.
Now there is hope for mothers and fathers, who drink this mournful cup. Know that every child who has been forsaken, the Lord will take him up.
And love him, and hold him, and keep your treasure safe. And when you are ready, in your heart he’ll find a place.
Zephyr, you’re the gentle wind, the silent breeze in our lives. Zephyr, though a silent breeze, you have sung your song in our hearts,
You have sung your song in our hearts.
Interview with Beverly Rush by the Moral Action Committee of the Laconia (NH) Christian Action Committee, November, 1984, Volume 1, Issue 6:
MAC: Would you be willing to share with us about your experience with abortion? Was it because of your abortion that you began to seek God?
BR: No, but the abortion was one of the first things He dealt with in my life because that was a very big pain.
MAC: How did God first expose this pain from the abortion?
BR: It began with a television commercial that I had never seen before and I’ve never seen it since. This woman got on and explained what an abortion was. It made me cry and weep.
MAC: Was this right after, or soon after your abortion?
BR: No, it has taken maybe ten years to receive healing for it because I think that the wound of abortion doesn’t just wound you physically, it wounds your spirit and the Lord says, “A wounded spirit who can bear?”
MAC: So you’d say that the consequences of abortion to the woman who’s had one are very far reaching?
BR: The bruise of abortion wipes out a woman. It can’t not wipe out a woman, especially if she has children later and she’s got something to hold in her arms. If the pregnancy is terminated, that feeling of motherhood is cut off. That’s part of the bruise. It bruises your motherhood, it bruises your motherhood.
MAC: If the wound of abortion is so deep, how does a women become healed of it? What was the first step in your healing?
BR: I would describe the order as first, dealing with the sin, the repentance of the sin. One of the first things you understand when you come to Jesus Christ is that He’s your substitute. When you’re willing to confess you’re a sinner, He takes your sins. But then there are other aspects. You have to walk in the forgiveness and in walking in it you’re restored.
MAC: What’s the next step?
BR: You have to understand that not only have you sinned, you yourself have been wounded and that wound where abortion is concerned is extremely emotional and extremely sorrowful. Jesus bore our sorrows so that we might have joy. So we have to, I think, let that sorrow surface and let the Lord take it and heal us. Jesus has done that for me. Jesus bore not only my sorrow, He bore my shame. When you talk about abortion you often point your finger to sexual sin and you feel ashamed. We have suffered by becoming dishonored and victimized by the abortion. The abortion itself dishonors your body. But Jesus Christ bore our shame.
MAC: You spoke of healing and restoration. Would you describe this restoration process?
BR: I read an article in a Christian paper that a father had written about his son who he had lost to cancer. The Lord used it to bring out the sorrow so I could see that I was mourning for someone. He showed me, “You see, you’ve lost a child too,” and to lose a child is very sad. You have to get the grieving out because it’s genuine grieving over someone that you’ve lost, a member of your family. Jesus wants to get that sorrow out. Grieving is your cleansing. In my grieving came the sense that that was my child I was robbed of. I wanted to name him and acknowledge his life and honor him. So we named our child Zephyr which means “gentle wind.” I wrote a song for him as a memorial.
MAC: What special comfort did God give you?
BR: Before I wrote the song the Lord gave me Psalm 27:10. “When your mother and father forsake you, the Lord will take you up.” I knew that Zephyr was in God’s hands. He wasn’t lost to me, he wasn’t gone forever, he was in God’s hands and someday I’ll see him.
MAC: Would you share your song with us?