“He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that, free from sins, we might live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. For you were going astray like sheep, but now you have returned to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.” – 1 Peter 2:24-25
Church is a place where we will find sinners who are in the process of seeing Jesus heal them of their condition. In the pews of every church sits the addicts, alcoholics, reprobates, dishonest businessmen, hypocrites, and many others we seek the healing presence of Christ Jesus to give them victory over their sin. And yes, while forgiven the scars of their sin remain.
Christ would not have us put our primary focus upon the scars but utilize them as a testimony to help others overcome their sin. I recently received this story that talks about “the scars of life.” You know we all have them! Some hide their scars better than others. A few folks have deep scars that they don’t want anyone to see so they cover them up with self-pity, anger, big egos, inappropriate humor, etc.
Don’t be afraid to acknowledge your scars and have them used as a testimony of God’s grace, mercy, and blessings in your life.
Some years ago on a hot summer day in south Florida a little boy decided to go for a swim in the old swimming hole behind his house. In a hurry to dive into the cool water, he ran out the back door, leaving behind shoes, socks, and shirt as he went.
He flew into the water, not realizing that as he swam toward the middle of the lake, an alligator was swimming toward the shore. His father working in the yard saw the two as they got closer and closer together. In utter fear, he ran toward the water, yelling to his son as loudly as he could.
Hearing his voice, the little boy became alarmed and made a U-turn to swim to his father. It was too late. Just as he reached his father, the alligator reached him. From the dock, the father grabbed his little boy by the arms just as the alligator snatched his legs.
That began an incredible tug-of-war between the two. The alligator was much stronger than the father, but the father was much too passionate to let go. A farmer happened to drive by, heard his screams, raced from his truck, took aim, and shot the alligator.
Remarkably, after weeks and weeks in the hospital, the little boy survived. His legs were extremely scarred by the vicious attack of the animal. And, on his arms, were deep
scratches where his father’s fingernails dug into his flesh in his effort to hang on to the son he loved.
The newspaper reporter who interviewed the boy after the trauma, asked if he would show him his scars. The boy lifted his pant legs. And then, with obvious pride, he said to the reporter, “But look at my arms. I have great scars on my arms, too. I have them because my dad wouldn’t let go.”
You and I can identify with that little boy. We have scars, too. No, not from an alligator, but the scars of a painful past. Some of those scars are unsightly and have caused us deep regret. But, some wounds, my friend, are because God has refused to let go. In the midst of your struggle, He’s been there holding on to you.
The Scripture teaches that God loves you. You are a child of God. He wants to protect you and provide for you in every way. But sometimes we foolishly wade into dangerous situations, not knowing what lies ahead.
The swimming hole of life is filled with peril – and we forget that the enemy is waiting to attack. That’s when the tug-of-war begins – and if you have the scars of His love on your arms be very, very grateful. He did not and will not ever let you go.
Did you know? Never judge another persons scars, because you don’t know how they got them. Right now, someone needs to know that God loves them, and you love them too…enough to not let them go. Read Isaiah 53:5 “By His wounds we are healed.”