My sweet friend Jolynne (Anna Grace's Mom), like so many of God's Chosen prophets, found this out last week. She just could not get an idea out of her head and felt no relief until she put it on paper. When I read it, I knew it was a message you would want to hear too. What beautiful faith she expresses, even in the midst of a situation most people never go through.
Enjoy and be encouraged!
I have been thinking about scars quite a bit lately. Perhaps it is because of what we have been through the past couple of weeks. Our youngest, nearly 18 month old Aidan had to get two cuts on his face “derma-bonded” back together and one cut on his forehead stitched back together. All separate incidents, separate days and in the end, not a good week. There is just something that really hurts when that baby skin, which up to know was even, spotless, gorgeous - gets marred.
After each accident (especially the last) he cried and I cried. He cried because it hurt. I cried because I knew his face would never quite be the same again. I was so upset because my precious baby boy was hurting. There is nothing worse than seeing your child hurting.
Then I thought about Jesus – God’s only Son and how much it must have hurt our Heavenly Father to watch His spotless, perfect Son suffer and die on the cross; bearing our punishment (which He did not deserve) so that He could freely pay the price for our sins. How His heart must have ached!
So often, I find myself wishing that I could take away any pain or illness my children face. How I wish that I could trade places with them because it hurts so much more to see them hurt! You see, God loved us so much that He gave His only Son and watched Him die on the cross so that through Him, we could have eternal life. Amazing love!
You know what? We have proof of that love. When Jesus arose from the dead on the third day, He still had His scars: in His hands, in His feet, on His brow, in His side. The gospel of John tells us of Thomas’ encounter with the Risen Jesus. Thomas had doubted the reports from the other disciples that Jesus was alive. “Unless I see the nail marks in His hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe it.” One week later, Jesus appeared amongst the disciples and said directly to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
Wikipedia defines scars as:
Areas of fibrous tissue (fibrosis) that replace normal skin after injury; a scar results from the biological process of wound repair in the skin and other tissues of the body. Thus, scarring is a natural part of the healing process. (emphasis added)God has such an amazing purpose for Christ scars. Those scars are a reminder of what our Lord did for us - a tangible, real, flesh-and-blood demonstration of His sacrifice. We will see those scars for ourselves one day. They will be the only man-made thing in Heaven because they are proof of how He healed us and the reason we can have hope for eternity.
But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)I thank the Lord for those scars.
When I look at Aidan’s beautiful (but now imperfect) face, I am reminded of God’s love - of my healing through Christ. When I see Anna Grace’s six inch scar on the back of her head from her fight with cancer, it reminds me not only of all that she has been through but of her healing. It reminds me of the miracles we witnessed during her surgery and recovery. It reminds me to be thankful and to continue to pray for her to remain healthy. It reminds me that God is faithful. No matter how deep the hurt, no matter how dark the day, no matter how hopeless you feel, God is always faithful.
The scars remind us.
When I look around and see Anna Grace, Aidan and other children get hurt, sick or even pass away, I do not understand it. It hurts so much. But I do not doubt God. I do not doubt that God has a purpose and a plan.
‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ (Jeremiah 4:19)I may not see it or understand it now but I know that one day, I will. Each and every one of us has been hurt and has the scars to prove it. But no matter how deep, how long, or how wide our scars – God can still heal us. Nothing can separate us from His love.
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)Perhaps God wants us to use our scars not as a reminder of pain but as a way to point others to Him. To help other people believe and be reminded that God is good, He is faithful and He loves each and every one of us so very much.
HE has the scars to prove it!