I came across this song by Mandisa, and it just gave me some incredible shivers! Listen, read the lyrics. Reflect over what your own scars mean. I am going to share after the music video what my scars mean to me as well.
Most of my scars are internal. They are emotional wounds in my heart, my mind, my soul. I do have some physical scars, like from my c-section last year on January 21, and this scar reminds me of the most incredible day of my life: the day my son was born. I had tears of joy spring instantly into my eyes the moment I saw him for the first time! And that scar reminds me that all the muscle aches, the pains, the tears, the emotions, the hormone swings, the back aches were so totally worth it! My internal scars took me so much longer to value, and I think that is because the wounds they represent took so much longer to heal. At times, they open up again and healing begins all over again. Thankfully, that healing is not as extensive a process as it was the first time. My emotional scars remind me of my sister, my grandfather, my great-grandmother, friends, teachers, loved ones who passed from my life well before I was ready to let them leave. They remind me of the bullies in school when I was in eighth grade. They remind me of lessons learned in romantic relationships over the years. They remind me of my own struggles to overcome depression, low self-worth, and suicidal thoughts. And they remind me of a Man who also has scars. That man is Jesus.
Jesus, who became scarred because of my sin. Jesus, who suffered through countless stripes of the barnacled whip of the Roman soldiers. Jesus, who had a crown of thorns thrust upon his head. Jesus, who hung on the cross with nails through his wrists and ankles. Jesus, whose side was pierced with a spear. Jesus, who also was rejected, bullied, betrayed. Jesus suffered emotional and physical scars so that we might come to know Him as our Savior! (Isaiah 53) We have a Savior who suffers right along with us, providing balm for our own wounds, physically and emotionally. He brings peace to our weary souls, and holds us, cradling us as a father or mother cradles a newborn baby. Safe and secure in the arms of my Abba, I can find rest, I can find strength to continue down the path toward healing.
That’s right: we have choices to make all along the way. We choose to take the next step. And that step is not always easy to take, especially when we are so weighed down with emotional pain and grief. The strength to take that step is not our own. Truly, if it were, I would not be here typing this. I would have perished years ago! God is my Strength, my Fortress. Psalm 18 describes my own journey as well as that of King David.
So, my scars are reminders that my God has brought me this far. 2 Samuel 7:18-22 echos my awe: Then King David went in and sat before the Lord and said, “Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that you have brought me thus far? And yet this was a small thing in your eyes, O Lord God. You have spoken also of your servant’s house for a great while to come, and this is instruction for mankind, O Lord God! And what more can David say to you? For you know your servant, O Lord God! Because of your promise, and according to your own heart, you have brought about all this greatness, to make your servant know it. Therefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears.
And as Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 12, I will go on boasting so that the Lord may be glorified! He is my strength, He is my Savior, He showers me with grace and mercy that I am so far from deserving! And yet, He has brought me thus far. I praise Him!