Scars tell a story. Every scar, whether seen or unseen, tells a tail of the ups and downs of life. Some scars are visible whilst some are hidden. Some are self inflicted whilst some are forced upon us. So often we feel the need to hide our scars. We feel the need to hide our stories of pain so that we present a picture of happiness and health to the world. But there’s a better way, a way that’s more helpful for us and for our listeners…
Telling the story of our scars provides the space for people to see that we’re not perfect and that life isn’t always a walk in the park. We’d be lost without people sharing their stories of pain.
Imagine a Bible without the book of Job, written to give us wisdom in our suffering and to help us suffer well for the glory of God. Imagine a Bible without the Apostle Paul who spoke about shipwrecks and whippings and was still able to tell us that suffering is preparing us for glory. Imagine a Bible without the suffering of Esther and the Jews as they feared for their lives, but a story that ended in their triumph over their enemies by God’s hidden hand. Ultimately, imagine a Bible without the suffering of Jesus and the scars that he bore. We would be nowhere. We would still be living in sin and alienated from God.
Thank the Lord that in His infinite wisdom He gave us His Word with people who bore scars and who showed them for God’s glory.
Some of the people who have touched my life most are those who have opened up about their pain and their struggles. People who have talked about their wounds and their scars. By opening up they taught me about God and His provision of strength and endurance. By opening up they taught me about the importance of clinging to God in the hardest of times. And by opening up they helped me invest in my own suffering for the day it would come.
Let’s not put on a face and pretend we’re fine. Instead let us show our scars. Not to prove our experience or to show how ‘great’ we are. But we should show our scars to glorify God, to make much of Jesus and to encourage other believers in their walk with the Lord.
A recent example of this is Patricia Cardy who in her book ‘There Came a Day’ she opens up about her pain of loosing her daughter at the age of 9. In that book she shows her scars, no pretence, no glamour, pure honesty. In the process she draws you to see how the Lord was at work in her life.
The Church is full of people who have scars. Wounded warriors, serving a scared Saviour. But His scars were the means of our salvations. We’re thankful that Jesus’ scars have been shown to us, so we should use the opportunity to use our scars to point others to Him.