Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Scabs & Scars

It doesn't take much time on this earth before we receive our first wound.  Most don't manage to make it through the first year but we often don't remember that far back.  My first memory of shedding blood was a skinned knee at the age of three.  The stinging surprise of pain brought blood curdling screams beckoning my parents to come to my aid.  And I just thought the initial wound hurt the most.  Boy was I in for it!

Their care for me was tender at first.  Often I was scooped up and held tight as my tears and uncontrollable shudders from crying subsided.  Then I might even get that magical KISS that made it ALL BETTER.  But for good measure my parents took it a step further and would either use Bactine Spray or perhaps some other antiseptic solution to clean the wound before dressing it.  Thus entered the second bout with pain which usually rivalled the first and sometimes seemed worse because it was inflicted by your own Mom or Dad.

Then came the days and weeks of healing where children like me who are tactile and curious would not let the thing just heal.  I had to pick at the scab and watch it bleed all over again, this time with less pain but still rather gross and unpleasant.  Mom would warn me to leave it alone but why did it have to itch so bad?  Why did it have to call to me to revisit it?  Most times these things did eventually heal and little to no evidence of the original problem was left.

But there were always those wounds that ran too deep or those scabs picked one too many times that left behind a scar.  Sure a scar is still technically a sign of healing but its also a reminder.  A mark.  A permanent indication of a story that I am willing to bet you remember all the details of.  Isn't that just like the walk we have with Christ?  He, like our parents, comes in having heard our desperate cries.  We receive his tight embrace and tender kiss to our wounded souls only to have Him spray the Bactine of His pure holiness onto our sinful ways.   It stings and is in some ways worse a pain than the original.  But it starts to heal..only for us to revisit that sin and reopen the wound.  Sometimes we manage to leave such sins behind long enough that healing takes place.  Other times our sins are so deep or picked at and revisited too often resulting in a spiritual scar.

The Good News is both scenarios bring healing.  But the scars become our testimonies to God and His Glory.  They are the undeniable marks that cannot be erased.  They are the healed, yet permanent evidence He has left on our hearts.  It may seem an unfair or painfully unnecessary process but I assure you it is not.  Scripture warns us and also encourages us in Paul's writings to consider it pure joy when growth of this kind takes place.  Our Healer is working on us.

And never forget the wounds and scars He took on for your sake!


Molly said...

Great analogy Jim! Very encouraging and thought-provoking. Thanks for sharing!