“He personally carried the load of our sins in his own body when he died on the cross so that we can be finished with sin and live a good life from now on. For his wounds have healed ours!”2 Peter 2:24
We all have them in one form or another – scars. Whether they’re physical or emotional wounds, they have left us with a mark. Some marks are more visible than others. Some are well hidden. Regardless of how deep or wide or how big or small, scars are a reminder of pain.
I’m willing to bet that most of our scars came from our childhood mishaps. Some of mine have! I have one scar on my knee that’s been visible for 35 years. It happened after my cousin dared me to spin with my eyes closed in my pretty new Easter dress. When I did, I lost my footing and fell into the ditch and split my knee open. Every time I look at the scar, I am reminded of that moment, and I can relive it like it happened yesterday.
I’ve also acquired some scars in my adulthood. Some of those would be the scars from childbirth that I graciously earned three times. I hear a few of you moms now giving me an “AMEN”. Those scars are so significant because they remind us of the pure love and joy we experienced as each child was born.
But I have scars that are not visible. Yet, they have left some of the deepest marks. Losing our third child through a miscarriage was one of those. The wound healed, but the scar remains. Those particular scars are so personal and deep. Oftentimes, they are ones that are harder to talk about and take the longest time to heal. Some scars define us. Our scars tell a story – a story of love, healing, overcoming, trusting and in my story, the faithfulness of God.
In January of 2012, the new year started off with some unexpected news and truthfully, news that I wasn’t ready for… I was pregnant! Having a third child wasn’t in the plan. We had two healthy children who were finally sleeping through the night which made life so much easier. My body had fully recovered from the second birth with my son and once again, it became my own. Like all things that catch us by surprise, I accepted it and became excited. I then began to make plans for a soon-to-be family of five. After two healthy, and fairly easy pregnancies, nothing prepared me for what was about to come.
During a routine 12 week ultrasound, it was determined a heartbeat couldn’t be found. As I sat in the doctor’s office, and she explained to me what was happening and what to expect, her voice began to be drowned out by my fears and deep anguish. This wasn’t something I was prepared for, and I wanted someone to change it and change it fast! You know the hardest part of it all? The waiting! “Go home and wait”, the doctor told me. “Come back in 48 hours and we’ll check for a heartbeat. If any sudden changes take place in your body between now and then, come back to the hospital immediately!” Not the greatest words of comfort by any stretch of the imagination.
After 48 hours, I headed back to the hospital where many tests determined the inevitable…there was no heartbeat. As they prepared me for the O.R., my body trembled with fear. My heart was broken. Completely broken. I’d never experienced such deep pain! And, there was absolutely nothing I, or anyone else, could do! I desperately wanted God to give my baby life! I couldn’t understand why it was happening! Had I done something to cause this? Oh… maybe this was happening because it wasn’t what I wanted to begin with? Then I began drowning in GUILT!
As they wheeled me to the O.R., tears quietly slipped down each cheek. I covered my eyes so the nurse couldn’t see. With my eyes shut tight, I quietly whispered to heaven, “God, I need you!” It was just a whisper, but He showed up! Because that’s what He does! “God is our refuge and strength! A very present help in times of trouble.” (Psalm 46:2) I heard His voice of comfort whisper in my ear, “Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.” (Psalm 23:4) It was in that moment that peace surrounded me. My body, which was shivering with cold, began to heat up. My heart, though broken, knew it was going to be okay! Because, though I was walking through the darkest valley, He was close beside me, walking with me and comforting me.
The wound healed. The scar remained.
Jesus was wounded for our sins. He carries the scars on His hands and feet. Those scars remind us of His deep love and sacrifice. His wounds, too, healed, but His scars remain.
I’m so thankful for His scars! It’s His scars that make my scars seem so small. It’s because of His scars that my broken heart was mended.
Each one of my scars tells a story. And every one of those stories leads back to the faithfulness of the One who held me through my most wounded times! He’s always been with me! He has calmed my fears, eased my pain, held my broken heart and healed my soul. And, He will do the same for you as you give him your deepest hurts and wounds.
And, your scars, like mine, will tell a beautiful story!
“Waking up to a new sunriseScars
Looking back from the other side
I can see now with open eyes
Darkest water and deepest pain
I wouldn’t trade it for anything
‘Cause my brokenness brought me to You
And these wounds are a story You’ll use
So I’m thankful for the scars
‘Cause without them I wouldn’t know Your heart
And I know they’ll always tell of who You are
So forever I am thankful for the scars”
by I Am They