“That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! Peace be with you, “he said” As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side.”
When my oldest son was younger, as most boys, he was into all kinds of mischievous things. He wanted to become a stuntman as a child so he would attempt all types of dauntless feats to help bring validity to his dream of truly becoming a stuntman, my son was a risk taker. I can recall a time when he was attempting to hold a wheelie for one minute and for a ten year old this is epic. I must admit my skepticism was high not because I doubted he had the attitude but I thought the ability was in question. I thought as most fathers with there little boys they support their imagination and never want them to feel defeated. I was nervous but I was proud to see his sense of confidence and courage to attempt to defy odds. So I was looking with a critical eye of protection but expectation- my expectation was hoping that he would succeed and not hurt himself.
As I am staring with apprehension on my face, with one eye open, he pulls the front of his bike up and as I observe with caution. He looks as if he has it under control but suddenly he begins to veer to the left and loses control. The bike falls to its side as if it just lost momentum and my son has slid out from under the bike about fifteen feet forward. As I run to his aid, trying not to panic or be boisterous and holding back fear of his head bleeding profusely. He is standing up looking at me saying, “Dad, I’m ok.” As I do a complete check of his body, as a blood hound looking for a scent, looking for blood or scratches, I notice his shirt is torn and there are some scrapes that are exposed to the deepest level of flesh on his body. Yes it appeared pretty painful and all these years after when I see the permanent reminder of what was created out of that life event for my son, it still takes me back to that day.
Now my son is a teenager, and the massive scars back then are now reduced to a few parallel lines on his back that do know justice of what took place those many years ago. It took us both back to a place in time that happened and we grew from. The point of sharing this is to really just drive home the point that scars are relevant and I challenge us today to change our perspective on how we view them. There is strength in scars.
Scars tell a story of where we have come from. In the text today, we see Jesus Christ has just been crucified and is appearing to the disciples for the first time since his crucifixion. He is challenging them to believe. He has them evaluate his wounds in his hands and his side. In my own thoughts, I can imagine the disciples (possibly Thomas) looking at the scars which appear to be small – maybe a small, grotesque gash in his hands yet all the way through to the other side of his palm. Then to see his side and see the very spot where anger met peace and appeared to win from a worldy perspective. These scars are monumental in what they represented in that moment. I can see the disciples looking at Jesus in amazement and the reminders of what happened at Calvary and reminding them of what he endured for them. Oh yes scars tell a story.
It is not the size of the scar but the testimony it tells. Family, the disciples had no idea of what they were really witnessing. These scars did not mean the same that they meant to Jesus. The disciples perspective was they knew it was painful and it was a moment but they did not truly embrace the testimony of what was being told. But to the Christ it represented suffering and pain from the separation from the Father. It represented a prominent instance that described an event that altered time, history and changed an outcome. If this was what was seen in the Son of God’s scars from Calvary- what do your scars reveal? The scars that you have endured and have formed due to past experience they are relevant and they mean something personal to the individual. It represents hopefully a moment in time that you have passed through and are freed from. Celebrate your scars do not be afraid to show where you have come from. These scars may be the result of childhood trauma, emotional disturbance, rejection from a loved one whatever or wherever your scars are celebrate your freedom today. No longer will you be bound to that place where it happened, In Jesus name!
Jesus wanted the disciples to see where He had come from and the price he paid to move forward. Your scars are not a sarcophagus for you to stay bound in but a place where you can rise and be free. Christ understood the purpose and position of His scars- they had to happen.
Thinking back on my son Elijah those many years ago and now that he is a teenager on the verge of adulthood. How the scars are still there but it is not a reflection of the healing that has taken place. No it does not look as raw or as distorted as it did back then. Sometimes scars are just the residue of a wound that has healed and we must accept that the remnant will never go away.
Remember that the wounds of our lives can either stifle or propel us into our destiny. If Christ had just stayed affixed on the wound-mankind would have never received a savior or salvation because there was never a true healing. That is and was the end result for that which He endured for you and me. We must all examine our scars and see the strength in the scars. From this moment on, I challenge you to look at your scars different and celebrate them-no longer be bound by them but say look at where I have come from and look to where I am going. Know that they are relevant and so are you.