I have a suspicion that when someone has an operation it temporary does something to his brain. For instance, you are visiting a friend in the hospital when suddenly he says, “yeah, the surgeon made the incision starting behind my ears all the way down to my kneecaps. You wanna see?”And before you can politely decline, there is his nasty cut, all red, swollen and bound with 3000 stitches.”Um, yeah… That’s really something.”
- Sometimes it is even kind of embarrassing but in his enthusiasm our friend doesn’t even notice. Maybe the anesthetic did something to his brain.Or maybe he’s gone through so many embarrassing tests and procedures at the hospital that all his modesty has flown away. He could walk through a nudist colony and not even notice.
Sometimes, even years later, he still wants to impress you with his scars. “Um, yes that’s … um … nice,” you mumble.
Time To Show Our Scars
There are scars that we need to be showing off. Life leaves us some nasty memories and we don’t need to be afraid to show them.
Those aren’t scars. They are medals. And honestly, showing them helps us to keep on healing.
“Look at this one. We prayed for this person that I loved with all my heart and … Well, it seemed that God was deaf. I’ve seen Him answer so many prayers before and since, but that one took a long time to heal. Still hurts sometimes when the weather is bad.
“You know what though? After I got through the anger, pain, doubt and some more pain, I noticed something. My heart was much softer. When I see someone hurting tears spring to my eyes. I try to help. I wasn’t always like that.
“And I didn’t quit loving the Lord. Somehow I loved Him more.”
Scars mean you are a warrior.
- Paul showed his battle scars to the Corinthians. They were being bedazzled by some sweet-speaking, good-looking, scripture-manipulating fakes who were stealing their hearts from the Lord.“Since you admire the egomaniacs of the pulpit so much (remember, this is your old friend, the fool, talking), let me try my hand at it. Do they brag of being Hebrews, Israelites, the pure race of Abraham? I’m their match. Are they servants of Christ? I can go them one better. (I can’t believe I’m saying these things. It’s crazy to talk this way! But I started, and I’m going to finish.)“I’ve worked much harder, been jailed more often, beaten up more times than I can count, and at death’s door time after time. I’ve been flogged five times with the Jews’ thirty-nine lashes, beaten by Roman rods three times, pummeled with rocks once.“I’ve been shipwrecked three times, and immersed in the open sea for a night and a day. In hard traveling year in and year out, I’ve had to ford rivers, fend off robbers, struggle with friends, struggle with foes.
“I’ve been at risk in the city, at risk in the country, endangered by desert sun and sea storm, and betrayed by those I thought were my brothers. I’ve known drudgery and hard labor, many a long and lonely night without sleep, many a missed meal, blasted by the cold, naked to the weather.“And that’s not the half of it, when you throw in the daily pressures and anxieties of all the churches. When someone gets to the end of his rope, I feel the desperation in my bones. When someone is duped into sin, an angry fire burns in my gut.
“If I have to “brag” about myself, I’ll brag about the humiliations that make me like Jesus.” (2 Cor. 11:22-29, The Message)
Bragging About Humiliation
- Paul showed them his scars. Those fake preachers hadn’t suffered for the Lord Jesus!Young Christians need to see our scars. Sometimes they think we’ve never doubted nor sinned since knowing Jesus. They probably think we faithfully read ten chapters of the Bible each day while praying three hours, all the while spending most of our time out on the streets witnessing.They think temptation to sin never crosses our mind. And we tell stories that often seem exciting without showing them the knots on our head from what we went through.
They need to see our scars. They need to know that we have battles too. Though Jesus won the war, we sometimes take a licking in individual battles (un raclet=take a licking).One of the most powerful healing agents for those with open wounds is to be exposed to someone with scar tissue from the same sort of wound.
In our pain we think that healing is impossible. Then we see someone who has healed, who is like us, and we take heart and edge towards healing ourselves.
I know Someone covered with scars and they are all exposed where we can see them and be healed. “We despised him and rejected him—a man of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way when he went by. He was despised, and we didn’t care.
“Yet it was our grief he bore, our sorrows that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God, for his own sins! But he was wounded and bruised for our sins. He was beaten that we might have peace; he was lashed—and we were healed!” (Is. 53:3-5, Living Bible)
Don’t be afraid to expose your life scars. It might help someone else to heal—and continue the healing process in your life.
But, um, about that scar from your appendicitis operation. I’ll take your word for it, huh? I’d rather not see it.
The way to remain in authority is to remain under authority. If I cannot obey those over me, why should I expect those under me to obey me? Leon Hiebert