I have a scar on the right side of my face, very close to my eye. It’s one of those scars that you might not quickly notice if you’re not intently looking, but it’s there, courtesy of one of my brothers. As the tale goes, while we were playing outside the house, he began throwing things around. Unfortunately, one of the things he threw landed on the wrong target leaving behind a trail of blood, a good number of stitches and an unflattering nickname at school.
Not many people ask how I got the scar these days. There was a time when that question was asked by almost every person I spoke to, and I would narrate the story over and over again. It was the scar that showed I have a brother. His name would always be mentioned anytime I told the story.
Every scar tells a story.
From now on, don’t let anyone trouble me with these things. For I bear on my body the scars that show I belong to Jesus.
Galatians 6:17 (NLT)
When I read that verse sometime within this week, I thought long and hard about the scar on my face and what it represents. Then I thought about the scars that show we belong to Jesus.
Scars of rejection.
Scars of broken relationships.
Scars of mockery.
Scars of dying to ourselves, daily.
There are other scars in our lives that tell the stories of where we have been and the paths we have trod. The scars that hold our deepest secrets and those that expose our weaknesses.
Scars of abuse.
Scars of addiction.
Scars of failure.
Scars of missed opportunities.
But every scar is a life-lesson waiting to be taught. Every scar is a medal of survival hanging amongst others. Every scar is a page or two in the memoirs of the best version of you. Every scar is yours, unique to you, your something special that only YOU have got.
Jesus never hid his scars. He showed them to his disciples as proof that he was the one who had died, and proof that he was alive; proof that His life will be our life too. Because of his scars, we have eternal hope.
So don’t hide your scars because the story might not be pleasant. Don’t hide your scars because you think it’ll expose your shame. Don’t hide your scars because you want to be accepted. Don’t hide your scars because you just want to blend in.
Celebrate your scars because they didn’t stay as open wounds. Let your scars tell their stories, and one day your world would be better for it.
I have a scar on my belly. It’s a very ugly scar. Yes, the world may not see it, but I never fail to give it a rub every once in a while and smile . . . as I look at the ones who came through my pain to bring me so much joy.