Healing Years in the Making

Once a wounded woman, now she offers hope to those who have none.

From Message magazine issue "Wonderfully Made"

Walking out of the clinic, Marlen closed her eyes, her child’s heartbeat echoing in her memory.

It was so strong, as if begging, Mommy, don’t kill me!

Wiping a tear away, she sighed. Too late. The deed was done. The heart wasn’t going to beat again.

But the pain she felt ran deeper than just this moment. As a victim of domestic violence, Marlen’s childhood was characterized by chronic neglect and abuse. Every day, Marlen dreamed of when she could leave, convinced that would make everything better.

But the emptiness and consuming need for belonging only followed her into adulthood, manifesting in her relationship with her baby’s father.

When Marlen realized she was pregnant, she was excited.

“I remember clearly when the doctor did the ultrasound. I was 7 weeks pregnant. And the baby’s heartbeat was so strong, so intense. It’s engraved here in my heart and my mind,” Marlen said.

But her partner didn’t react well to the news. Instead, she was faced with an ultimatum. Either have an abortion or raise the child alone. She chose to have an abortion. When the time came, the doctor reassured her the procedure would be easy, and it wouldn’t affect her afterward. She let herself believe him.

But it did affect her. And regardless of her choice, her partner did leave her.

For all her desperate grasping, here she was. Desperate and alone, again.

For years, Marlen lived within a fog of loneliness, consumed by her grief and emptiness.

One day, someone invited her to a Bible study. They discussed sin and forgiveness through Christ, and Marlen’s broken heart soaked up every word

That night, for the first time in decades, she uttered the word “abortion,” as she poured out her heart to God, pleading for forgiveness.

From that moment, her life began to change. “I longed so much to have a father, and he represents that to me now. My father, my beloved, my whole life, everything!” Marlen said.

When Marlen shared her pain with a friend, that friend pointed her to New Life Prenatal Center.

The missionary at the center radiated peace and love while providing postabortion counseling to Marlen.

As Marlen found restoration through Christ’s forgiveness, her passion for the women, who came to the center, grew. These days, Marlen pours her life into these young women, inspired by the godly staff around her and the purpose the Lord has given her. Once looking for help, Marlen is now helping many others as the Peruvian director of New Life Prenatal Center.

Did you know? 28.4% of women choose to have an abortion out of fear of losing their partner.

Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons 22, no. 4 (2017).

Learn more about Marlen and New Life Prenatal Center here.