Scars Are Tattoos With Better Stories

When my daughter was three, she got a terrible skin infection that we would later learn was part of her deficiency called pyoderma gangrenosum.  This infection created a wound that took months to heal and created a huge scar on her stomach. Thankfully because of her age then, the scarring didn’t bother her. As she has gotten older I’ve been able to teach her the beauty of her scar and why it is there. My daughter thinks the scar looks like a butterfly; I think it looks like a leaf. Either way, it’s a beautiful reminder of thankfulness, our strong faith, bravery, and courage. Since then she has gained several more scars, some small, some large. As they heal, we always try to figure out what the scar will look like. We see the beauty in each scar, instead of how the scar got there. With each scar, it teaches me how to have faith in Marley’s story and the path God has her on. I do not understand it, but it is not meant for me to understand at this moment.

Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing, you do not understand now, but you will understand later” – John 13:7

Within the last couple of months, she has gained a scar of a heart on her back. It was from a bone marrow aspiration which caused her pyoderma to flare up.  Each scar story amazes the doctors and gives them hope to share with other doctors and patients. Each scar draws us closer to God and gives us a chance to share her courage and bravery with others.

There can also be scars that are not easily seen, emotional scars. I have these scars from years of emotional abuse from my previous marriage. These types of scars are easier to hide from yourself and others around you. For years after my divorce, I didn’t realize they were there. When I started dating Charles (my husband now) and our relationship started uncovering those scars, only then did I realize that they were there and I started pulling away from him. Scars can be scary, but I decided I wanted to face them, and we went to premarital counseling to talk through them. The first step to heal emotional scars is to admit you have them. Now, almost one year into my marriage, I still work through them but slowly the scars are healing. Instead of fearing them, I am growing from them. I am getting stronger and sharing my story to help others. You can also my friend.

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds – Psalm 147:3

My sweet friend Julia Melatis wrote a book, The Grace Table: Your Faith Legacy and in it, she talked about a unique Japanese art form called Kintsugi. It is a lacquer mixed with powdered gold, silver or platinum to repair broken pottery. The purpose of this art form is to mend the broken pottery to make it even more beautiful. The ones that mend the pottery take special care and precision to each piece. That’s exactly how God mends our scars (okay, not with the lacquer), with precision and special care. As they are mended, they make us more beautiful and unique and special. Marley’s scars show how God has healed her which spreads hope and courage to others. My scars, even though they can’t show they tell, tell how God has made me stronger in faith and less fearful.

What stories do your scars tell?