I’ve spent a lot of time this year thinking about different kinds of health: spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical. At the Sunday school conference I attended in March, we talked about the need to be healthy in all of those areas, because we are called to love God with all of our
If one of these areas is out of whack, we can’t love God with all that we are, not in the way we were created to. And what’s amazing is how God is also the healer of each of these areas of our lives. Yet I’ve realized that even though the wounds heal, they do leave scars behind.
Personally, I don’t have any significant mental scars. Not yet, anyway. I haven’t forgotten major chunks of my life or been abused mentally at any point. I have little scars perhaps, mostly related to those moments we all experience where I felt really stupid for something I said or did, but these are minor scratches compared to some of my other scars.
I might be on the wrong track here, but I think that as sinful, fallen humans, we all have spiritual scars. Original sin is the scar we are born with, and each sin we commit scars us a little bit more. Thanks be to God that we are forgiven, and we do not have to live with the shame of these scars forever! Once we get to heaven, these scars will be gone.
I’m not so sure that will be true of our physical scars. Jesus Himself still had the nail marks when He rose from the dead. But I don’t know for sure if that means our bodies will keep the scars or be perfected. I guess that’s something to find out. My physical scar is directly related to my emotional scar. There is a line only a few inches across the lower part of my abdomen, the remainder of the incision made by my doctor to lift Samantha out of my womb. It no longer hurts unless one of our dogs steps directly on it (which of course, they do because they love to climb all over me). Above it are stretch marks that give evidence of my pregnancy. I read someplace, probably on Facebook, that stretch marks are really the tiger stripes that mamas earn. I suppose that’s a cute way to think of it, especially if you are fiercely protecting your child. For me, it’s part of the scarring that remains from our children.
I don’t have to tell you about my emotional scars. They are documented here regularly. But I am thankful for my emotional and physical scars. They hurt sometimes, and sometimes they are reminders of the life I have lived, the children I have carried, the sorrows I have come through, and the peace I now have knowing I will see them again someday. I am truly blessed, and my scars are part of the blessing.
I have yet to figure out any spiritual significance to pimples though… Just keep wondering why I’m still dealing with them in my 30’s!
Hmm. First thing that comes to mind is that we are perfected in our weaknesses and should be thankful for them as was Saul/Paul. SHOULD. Great word. Frequently used, just as frequently misunderstood, barely respected for what it means: ought to but not necessarily will.
I get your point. Being a heavy metal head (closeted usually) I think of Jim Steinman’s “Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through” – the original version on the Bad for Good Album, sung by Rory Dodd although everybody on the radio said it was Steinman. [He was getting even with the music execs for being mistreated on Meat Loaf’s Bat Out of Hell album, but that is another story, has its own scars, and is not completely irrelevant to our current conversation. But that is not the current point].
“I treasure your love, I never want to lose it.
You’ve been through a lot of pain in this earth and I know you have the scars to prove it.”
As bizarre as this sounds to the uninitiated, heavy rock choruses are often profoundly filled with grace, Explicating Steinman has always led me to believe that wittingly or unwittingly he is saying here that God treasures our love, which we know He does, wants never to lose it, ditto, and because of that He sent those thorns in our sides to cause pain and leave scars so that our love for Him is perfected and proven through the pain and scars.
Simply: if we do not have our scars and remember them, you’re right. We forget His love and His grace.
At least that’s a big part of what I heard you saying.