The Sexual Revolution’s “free love” narrative has created bondage rather than freedom for those who bought the lie that casual sex empowers and bears no consequences to body or soul. Most awakened a decade or two down the road feeling duped, guilt-ridden or experiencing a variety of physical, emotional or relational complaints. A Houston’s First member shares her story of buying the notion of “my body, my choice,” and experiencing a life of pain and turmoil — until God brought healing and purpose.
“I was young and looking for love in all the wrong places,” said Cynthia Wenz, who had her first abortion at 15, a second at 19 and a third at 29. “I gave my parents a run for their money. I was almost in high school when they divorced, and as a result, was largely unguided.”
Cynthia told her mother she was pregnant at 15, and her next stop was a southwest Houston abortion clinic. “I found my old diary three years ago and looked at the entry I had made,” said Cynthia. “‘Well, I killed my kid today,’ it said. I didn’t realize that I understood a life had ended.” Her Catholic upbringing no doubt provided some understanding, but a lack of coping skills over the loss sent her spiraling out of control as she became involved with much older, and sometimes married, men.
During college, partying and drugs led to Cynthia’s second abortion. “I was a kid crying out for help,” she said. “Because of the drug use, I can’t recall much about my reasoning. I went through the rest of college feeling pretty numb.”
On her twentieth birthday Cynthia went to church. “I asked God, ‘Are you real? Are you there?’” she said. “I remember God showing up in my life, but my lifestyle had not changed. It takes a lot of work to get out of the lifestyle I was living.”
Cynthia spent her twenty-second birthday having emergency surgery. Two friends took her to the hospital after she experienced vision loss and was barely able to walk. “I had contracted STDs [sexually transmitted diseases],” she said. “And I got a diagnosis of pre-cervical cancer.”
Experiencing major depression after graduating college served as Cynthia’s wake-up call. She rededicated her life to God and settled down to dating just one man, but their breakup led to a rebound sexual relationship. Unexplained bleeding sent her to the obstetrician. “The doctor said it was probably a miscarriage, anyway, and performed a DNC. I couldn’t relax, breathe or stop crying,” said Cynthia. “I knew what I was doing was dead wrong.”
At her two-week post-abortion check up, she knew something wasn’t right with her body. She asked the doctor if she could see what was inside her, and an ultrasound revealed a living baby.
“We discovered the aborted baby had a twin,” she said. “It was a Holy Spirit moment. God had sustained life after abortion.” The shock was great. Cynthia knew she had to get out of the way and make the right decision about the life of this baby. She named him Roman after Romans 8:28, “We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God: those who are called according to His purpose.”
The experience was “God’s two-by-four right between the eyes,” she says. Cynthia accepted Christ soon after, began working three jobs and moved in with her father in an effort to support Roman. She met and married Chris Wenz in 2001, and had much coping to do in living as a wife. Chris helped her heal, but true healing came when she fell in love with Jesus. “‘Go, give away joy and serve others to reap the fullness of healing’ was God’s message to me,” said Cynthia. “I began teaching a biblical post-abortion healing class to tackle a lack of self-worth and dignity — and teaching others to do the same.”
What was evil, God has redeemed for good. Working with The Source for Women, first as a volunteer, and then becoming CEO in 2009, Cynthia found her place revitalizing the 30-plus year-old organization, creating alternatives for women and teens who, like herself, were bent on seeking sexual freedom, only to find themselves caught up in a web of heartache.
“The organization changed my life,” said Cynthia. The viability of The Source for Women came to a critical point, and the question was asked, do we close the doors or give it another shot? Cynthia joined the staff, unpaid, as CEO, and as the organization began to turn around, she began drawing a salary. Under Cynthia’s leadership, two additional centers opened and more than 22,000 visits have been made by women and teens during some of the most harrowing times of their lives.
“Knowing that the largest Planned Parenthood center was opening just 10 miles away, during my prayer time the Lord spoke to my heart,” said Cynthia. “His message was, ‘Do what they do, but do it better and with the focus of life and Christ.’”
The Source for Women positions itself as a “first responder for life,” and a holistic reproductive health center that allows teens and women to make healthy choices for reproductive health. They provide services for women such as well woman exams, disease and pregnancy tests, ultrasound exams, counseling and education services at their three centers in the Houston area.
“I am a poster child for redemption,” said Cynthia. “I believed the lies of the Enemy — that there are no consequences for our choices; that our own individual beliefs are the standard for truth; and that offering abortion for convenience sake is good healthcare.”
God is expanding the reach of Cynthia’s personal testimony of God’s redemption in a book, Healed for Life, set to be released in early 2017. Her story provides God’s truth for women who have believed the lie of “My body, my choice.”
“How we love ourselves matters,” said Cynthia. “I am not a broken woman stuck in my sin. I live a fully scripted life by God and live in the fullness of His redemption. He is allowing me to pour into young women the truths that lead to complete healing. It is a miracle of God that we can choose not to linger in the past, but to move forward with a renewed mind, cleansed thoughts and a pure life.”