Revive Our Hearts Radio

The Beauty of the Gospel After Abortion

Program Resources

Watch Jean's story.

Leslie Basham: Do you know what it’s like to feel the oppression of guilt? Here’s Jean's story.

Jean Wuebbles: I was the person to call. So if you were pregnant and wanted an abortion, you called me. I called my guy, and we arranged the abortion. Abortion was not legal at the time, so it had to be done behind closed doors in very unsanitary conditions. You never knew if you were going to lose your right to have children again in the future. That was the gamble you took. It didn't seem like such a big gamble to me. I wasn't going to have this kid.

I don’t even want to think about how many little babies I killed. I might not have yielded the knife, but I made the arrangements for it to be done. 

Leslie: Today, hear how Jean found freedom . . . and how you can, too.

This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth, author of Choosing Gratitude, for March 15, 2019.

Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth: My heart has been saddened . . . and sickened . . . in the last several weeks as a new law went into effect in New York, allowing abortions in the third trimester of pregnancy, all the way up to moments before birth. Abortion is a tragedy any time. But the idea of taking the life of a fully formed baby right before the point of birth is a visceral reminder of how deep of a tragedy this really is. A lot of women are going to be hurting and filled with remorse for ending the life of their child this way.

Our heart goes out to women who have experienced abortion no matter how far along in their pregnancy, and we want to provide hope in Christ. So I want us to hear the story of a woman who knows a lot about this topic.

But to start, I want to take you back to one of our Revive Conferences several years ago where I shared a story from Pastor John MacArthur. 

Nancy (conference): He said, "Not long ago, a man I had never met before walked into my office and said, 'I need help. I feel strange coming to you because I'm not even a Christian. I'm Jewish. Until a few years ago, I had never even been in a church. But I need help from someone. So I decided to talk to you.'"

Nancy: As this story unfolded, it was clear this man was burdened by guilt.

Nancy (conference): "'I'm an abortionist. I kill babies for a living. Last year in my clinic, we did $9 million dollars' worth of abortions. I don't do only therapeutic abortions. I do abortions for any reason. If a woman doesn't have a reason, I give her a reason. I know I'm doomed to hell because of what I've done. I'm absolutely miserable and unhappy.'"

Nancy: I went on to explain how the power of God’s Word transformed this man’s life and showed him how to be fully forgiven.

After that session, a woman approached our team and said she just had to share something with us. She said that man’s story was just like hers. Our team asked Jean for an interview and what unfolded was an amazing story of God’s grace that you won’t want to miss.

If you feel the weight of past sin and don’t know if you can be truly, fully forgiven, I especially hope you’ll listen today and hear the good news of how you can be set free from all guilt.

Leslie: Thanks Nancy. Here’s Jean’s story.

Jean: My name is Jean. I was born in a small town in Ohio to a very religious Jewish family. In fact, my grandfather was a rabbi. We kept all the laws as outlined in Leviticus, and sometimes those in Exodus.

In our home, we didn’t eat bacon or ham or shrimp. We never ate meat and dairy at the same time, so I never had a cheeseburger. I never had bacon. We had to live within walking distance of the synagogue because we weren’t allowed to drive on the Shabbat [Sabbath].

We would go every Friday night and every Saturday morning to synagogue, and we had to walk. That was all okay; I didn’t really find it a problem. When I was very young and in public school, I heard some kids talking about Jesus.

I came home and I asked my mother, “Who’s this Jesus guy they’re talking about?”

She said, “He is a traitor to our people! He was a zealot. He was a traitor, and don’t ever forget that!”

I said, “Okay, I won’t.”

Oh, maybe it was two or three years later when I heard talk about Jesus again at school. I came home and said, “Mom, it appears to me that the Christians give God more power than we do.”

She said, “What are you talking about?”

I said, “They give Him power to have a son, and we don’t think He’s powerful enough.”

With that she slapped me across the face, sent me to my room, and was screaming after me, “Don’t you dare tell your father what you just said. And I don’t want to ever hear His name in this house again!” And she didn’t.

I went off to college; I went to a small school in Columbia, Missouri, and I was really worried about how I was going to keep all these dietary laws. My family said, “Well, just do the best you can, and don’t worry about it. God will understand.”

I did the best I could, but I would go with my friends to town, and I’d have cheeseburgers. Or my favorite was a BLT. I fell in love with BLTs! I honestly felt that God was going to strike me dead. You know, you hear people say that all the time, but I felt it.

I felt as I was walking down the street one day and pfhht, I be gone because I’d eaten a piece of bacon! All of this was just starting to confuse me, and I just didn’t know what to do. So I went to the chaplain and I told him I was all confused about this stuff.

He said to me—a freshman in college—“If you can do something and, as you’re doing it, you can say, ‘Is God loving me now?’ if the answer is yes, go for it!” Well, you’d be surprised at all that a college student can do and still say that God is loving her now.

I became very promiscuous, I got into drugs. I left Missouri and went to Ohio State University. By then I was a mess. I was just living a life of sin. I got pregnant; I had an abortion. That didn’t stop me. I was shooting drugs—anything I could get my hands on.

I’d get up in the morning and my number one problem was how to get money for drugs. So I had to do what I had to do to get money for drugs. I got pregnant again; I had another abortion because I knew a guy. And because I knew a guy, I was the person to call.

If you were pregnant and you wanted an abortion, you called me. I called my guy, and we arranged the abortion. Abortion was not legal at the time, so it had to be done behind closed doors and in very unsanitary conditions.

And you never knew whether you were going to lose the right to have children in the future. That was a gamble that you took. It didn’t seem like such a big gamble to me. I wasn’t going to have this kid!

When Roe vs. Wade happened, that was my life dream—that was what I had been working for. It was so important to me that we have rights over our own bodies, and I did everything I could for Roe vs. Wade. I was right in the Women’s Lib movement.

I was super-active in the Women’s Lib movement. We used to have meetings every night in the dorm: We were women. We didn’t need men. We didn’t need to stay home. We needed careers, and we needed to be in charge of our own bodies.

When Roe vs. Wade was passed, I cheered!

I moved to Chicago, and I met my first husband. I met him in a bar; we were both drunk. He was a closet homosexual, and he needed a wife to get his parents off his back. He needed a wife and a child. So he married me and we had a baby, and that pretty much was the end of our marriage, although we did stay together for eight years.

It wasn’t until then that I really realized that he was a homosexual. As I look back, I think I missed a lot of signs—but, when we don’t want to see something, sometimes we don’t. So we got divorced. 

I had this baby, so I was a single mom, and I was trying to be a Jew again. I was going to synagogue. I had my son in a private Jewish school that my dad paid for. Then I met my current husband, and he was a Catholic.

He was going to be a priest at one time, and he left the seminary. So here we were—this Jew and this Catholic. We made a marriage, and we were really happy and we had everything we could want. We had a wonderful business, and we had this wonderful son. But there was this hole in me, and he couldn’t fill it—nothing could fill it. I once heard an anorexic give her testimony about how there was this hole, and no matter how much she ate, it wasn’t filled. I thought, That’s just how I feel. I have this hole in me! 

It never went away, and then we moved and we moved, and we didn’t know anybody. One day I said to him, “You know, maybe if we went to church we could meet some people.”

He said, “You want to go to church?!”

I said, “Yeah. There’s a little Methodist church a few blocks away. Let’s go Sunday.” And we went to church. That week I went in and I talked to the pastor. I told him I was a Jew, my husband was a Catholic, and that’s how we came to be at this little Methodist church.

He asked me if I would be interested in doing a Bible study, and I said, “Sure!” So he came to our home once a week for one year. I read the New Testament over and over and over. Then I started reading the Old Testament again, and it kind of looked a little different to me than the way I used to read it.

And twenty years ago, I gave my life to the Lord. 

When I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, I realized that there’s no hole anymore! It’s been gone for twenty years.

I never told my family. We had an extended family. When we got together for holidays, it was not just my mom and dad and my sisters and brothers, but it was all my mother’s brothers and sisters and all their kids—so there were usually sixty or seventy of us at these holidays. I knew what was going to happen when I told them, I knew it. 

My mother died, and I never talked to her about Christ. And then my sister died, and I never talked to her about Christ. She was my best friend in the whole world, and I let her die without knowing about Jesus. 

Then I went to my pastor and I said, “I haven’t told anybody because I know they’re going to throw me away, and I won’t have my family left—my family that I know I can depend on.”

We had a family email list. It would just be a line: “So-and-so’s engaged; so-and-so’s pregnant; so-and-so’s moving.” That’s all it would be, and there were about seventy of us on it by then.

My pastor said, “It sounds to me like you are ashamed of Jesus, Jean.” So, that night I wrote a letter to all my family . . . and I never heard from them again. I was cut off of the family email list at once. I got a call about six months later that the only one of my mother’s brothers and sisters who had still been alive, had died.

It was left on my answering machine, “Your aunt just died. We think it best that you don’t come to the funeral.” 

I thought my sins were too much for Jesus to forgive. I don’t even want to think how many little babies I killed. I might not have wielded the knife, but I made the arrangements for it to be wielded.

There wasn’t one of the Ten Commandments I hadn’t broken—and most of them over and over again. How could Jesus possibly forgive this? And it was because I really didn’t understand grace, and you have to understand grace.

My pastor once said to me, “Jean, you’ve already asked forgiveness for this. You don’t have to keep asking. That shows you don’t have faith that He’s forgiven you.” I sometimes slip back and say, “Oh, Jesus! How can You . . . when I see what’s going on in this world with the abortions and Planned Parenthood, how can You possibly have forgiven me?” But I realize that He has!

His blood ran for me, and I believe when He was on that cross with His arms out and He was taking in all of our sin—that was my sin, too. He knew me then, and He said, “Jean, I’m taking your sin!” He did! He’s forgiven me.

That’s what I say to you. If you’re living with these sins, just go to him on bended knee. Go to Him! He is there for you. He will forgive you. That’s what grace is! You don’t have to earn it; you don’t have to do anything. All you have to do is ask for it, and it’s yours! You can take it in every fiber of your being.

Now I live in a Christian marriage. God sent him to me—there’s just no question. The wonderful part is that he thinks that God sent me to him. I submit to him. He loves me as Christ loves the Church. I do not think I have a right over my own body. 

And this child that God put in there, and God saw fit to let me have one, even when the doctors told me that I wouldn’t ever be able to have one after the botched-up abortions. That little boy that I had with my homosexual husband came to know Jesus. He always says it just shows God has a sense of humor.

It’s just a wonderful thing. I’m so thankful that Jesus has forgiven me!

Bob Lepine (conference): Ladies, welcome to Indianapolis to True Woman! Are you glad to be here?

Jean: The first time I came to Revive Our Hearts . . . I don’t do conferences. I’m not a conference person. But a lady from church (whom I don’t know very well at all) said to me, “Why don’t you come to Revive Our Hearts with us? I promise you, you’ll never be the same.”

I have some health issues which prohibit me from traveling, but I said, “Okay, sign me up!” I went home and told my husband, “I’m going to Indianapolis!”

He said, “Are you nuts?”

I said, “I’m going.”

He said, “God bless you. Go!”

I came to True Woman for the first time in 2010. I came, and my life was changed forever. Nancy and Janet Parshall and Joni Eareckson Tada . . . I heard them, and I saw how they were living for God and how they were teaching me. I needed to give back what they taught me to other people.

Revive Our Hearts taught me the real role of a woman. I really don’t think I had any idea what the role of a Christian woman was. I read my Bible a lot, and I knew what a Christian was—I knew that—but I didn’t know the role of a Christian woman.

There’s no question that Revive Our Hearts has shown me where I fit in God’s plan. I’m not any less than a man. God created me to be man’s helper, but He doesn’t love me any less. He doesn’t think of me as any less—just different. I’m just different than a man.

It was really neat to find that out, but it was even neater to go and share that with other women in our church. I bought the whole DVD packet. Once a month we have this huge meeting in our area. We get fifty, sixty people there, and we would show the DVDs. So we brought Revive Our Hearts back to our community.

I have not only read every one of Nancy’s books, I have taught every one of Nancy’s studies. The only study I haven’t done is the 201 study.

Nancy (conference): Welcome to Revive '15—2200 women coming to learn how to be women who can teach other women. Is that not amazing!

Jean: And each time I come, especially to this conference, which was Women Teaching Women (which I also did two years ago), I take home something.

Jen Wilkin (conference): The path to transformation is from the head to the heart. We cannot love what the mind does not know. The heart cannot love what the mind does not know. So we owe it to the women that we teach to give them a thinking faith.

Jean: This time, I take home: “Guess what? I’m not as good a teacher as I thought I was!”

Jen (conference): We must teach women to think rightly about God. Then their right thinking will beget right feeling for them. 

Jean: But that’s great, because I have women’s Bible study in two days, and I can alter my lesson enough to be sure that God is in there and that I’m not just throwing words at people.

Jen (conference): Don't just give them good information. Give them good tools. You have to push them to seek first hand knowledge of the Scriptures.

Nancy (conference): And the joy of thinking about how many of us go back to our homes and churches and neighborhoods, to take and offer the Word of God to others. Think about the multiplying impact of that.

Jean: I was angry with Jesus for a while because I decided once He knew that He was going to take me, why did He let me go through all that junk? I have seven years of my life that I don’t remember, because of drugs and everything else.

I finally figured it out one day. I ran into my pastor’s office—interrupted him—and I said, “I got it. I understand. I’m not mad at God anymore! He did all this so I could teach women who are going through these things.”

I mentor young women who are addicts, who’ve had abortions—who can’t get over it . . . and I’m there for them because there’s nothing they can say that would shock me. I have been through it all!

I’ve been teaching women’s Bible studies now, I think, for six years. I’ve been teaching Sunday school for seven years. I did a college study for about five years. I want to tell about Jesus to everybody I can. I don’t want what happened with my mother and my sister to happen to anyone else.

When I share the gospel with somebody who doesn’t know Jesus you’re just planting the seed. God’s gotta water it.

Evangelism is not succeeding. I’ve had to learn that the hard way. I had a woman I was mentoring commit suicide. My pastor called me—I think it was at five in the morning—because he wanted to be sure I heard it from him.

I started crying, and I said, “I’ve failed!”

And do you know what he said to me? “Jean, you’re not that powerful.”

And that was just what I needed to hear. I am not that powerful. It all rests in the hands of the Lord.

But I spread the Word, I spread the seeds, and I let Him water them. Evangelism is not the success of someone coming to Jesus. Evangelism is telling the story of Jesus, telling who Jesus is. 

I would like to go to 2 Peter chapter 3, verse 9: “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” I didn’t used to believe that verse, because I didn’t think He was patient with me.

I thought He waited too long. But now I understand, and I am so thankful! Most of all, I am so thankful to Jesus Christ, that He waited patiently for me! And in His Name, as always, I say amen.

Leslie: I hope you’ll visit ReviveOurHearts.com to see the video version of that story and share it with a friend who needs to hear it.

Nancy, what a story!

Nancy: Jean’s story is such a powerful reminder to all of us—we are all guilty of sin, and we all desperately need a Savior. Your story may not be exactly like Jean’s, but your guilt, my guilt, before a holy God is just as real. But Jesus lived a perfect life, then was punished for our sin. When we put our faith in Him, He takes our sin upon Himself, and in exchange, He gives us His perfect righteousness. How amazing is that?! No matter what sin we may have committed, He is powerful and faithful and merciful to forgive.

Not only that, but despite our past failures, the Lord wants to use us—broken, sinful, restored, redeemed people—in the lives of others.

I’m so encouraged that Revive Our Hearts can be part of the ministry Jean shares with the young women around her. Older women are called to teach younger women, and Jean is a great example to us of how to make that investment.

We first ran into Jean at one of our Revive conferences. And I’m excited to let you know about Revive '19 that is taking place September 27–28. In addition to the women who will be gathered at the host site in Indianapolis, we're praying for thousands of groups who will be watching the event together in homes, in churches, and in other meeting places right in their own communities. For more details, visit ReviveOurHearts.com.

The reason we’re able to host these kinds of events that reach women around the world is thanks in large part to our Monthly Partner Team. This is a special group of committed listeners who pray for Revive Our Hearts, tell others about the ministry, and donate at least $30 a month.

When you become a Monthly Partner, we want to stay in touch so you know what’s going on in the ministry. Each month we send a letter and a devotional booklet called Daily Reflections—designed exclusively for our Monthly Partners. And our partners can attend one of our conferences each year on us. So your registration at Revive '19 would be covered. This month we’re asking the Lord to call hundreds more listeners to become Monthly Partners.

Would you ask Him if this is the time for you to become one of our Monthly Partners? If you've been listening to this ministry for a while and you've been blessed by it, would you ask him if this is the time for you to join our partner team? When you join this month, you’ll get a welcome package including two of my latest  books, a CD set of conference messages from True Woman '18, a set of Scripture memory cards, and a True Woman Manifesto booklet. I know that’s a lot to take in, but you can find all the details at ReviveOurHearts.com.

Thanks for considering locking arms with Revive Our Hearts in a deeper way as we call women to greater freedom, fullness and fruitfulness in Christ!

Leslie: To join the Monthly Partner team, visit ReviveOurHearts.com, or give us a call at 1–800–569–5959.

If there’s one thing you could ask Nancy, what would it be? Some Revive Our Hearts listeners heard that offer, and they started asking! On Monday, Betsy Gómez is here to present listeners’ questions to Nancy. You won’t want to miss it. Join us Monday for Revive Our Hearts.

Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth is inviting you to tell others about Jesus. It is an outreach of Life Action Ministries.

*Offers available only during the broadcast of the radio series.

Join the Discussion