Surgeries & Scars

I had a surgery today. The surgeon removed four lipoma lumps (non-malignant fatty tissue), three from my right arm and one on my abdomen. They are pesky little things that can grow into a big problem if not taken care of properly. One person quipped to me that he also had a fatty lump on his abdomen that he needed removed, but I don’t think we were talking about the same thing. I now have four wounds carefully dressed in bandages. They will take several days to heal. While this particular surgery wasn’t very invasive, it was by no means “comfortable.” I hate needles and all that hospital stuff. My scars may be small, but I will forever have four marks on my skin as proof of what happened to me.

Inescapable Scars

Scars come in all shapes and sizes. They may be physical or they may be emotional. We may not have them in the same places on our bodies as other people. We may not be able to relate to each other’s various hurts and trauma. But the universal reality is this- we all have scars. And, unless we are an adolescent male trying to show off, we don’t like them. Won’t it be great when we get to heaven someday and all those scars will be gone?

Glorified Scars

But wait a minute- Jesus has scars, too. And not just the “ordinary-like-us” Jesus before he died on the cross. No, the glorified Jesus has scars. Let me share with you a familiar story from the Bible. But instead of glossing over it, I want you to read it in light of the common assumption that our glorified bodies will be perfectly flawless and scar-free.

19 On the evening of that day, the first day of the week,
the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews,
Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, 
“Peace be with you.”
20 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side.
Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord…

24 Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin,
was not with them when Jesus came.

25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.”
But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails,
and place my finger into the mark of the nails,
and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.”

26 Eight days later, his disciples were inside again,
and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked,
Jesus came and stood among them and said, 
“Peace be with you.”
27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands;
and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.”

28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!”
29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me?
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

John 20:19-20, 24-29

We read that passage and somehow assume that, while it may be good for Jesus to keep his scars, it wouldn’t be good for me to keep my scars. The pain is too deep. The memories are too haunting. And I understand that sentiment. I don’t like my scars one bit.

Purpose-Filled Scars

rawpixel-1135753-unsplash.jpgBut the example of Jesus teaches us that our post-resurrection glorified bodies and souls will still bear marks and memories of the past. Why on earth would God plan things that way? Here’s the only answer I can think of in light of the example of Jesus: when we finally arrive in glory, those scars will no longer be signs of shame and hurt; they will be evidences of glory and healing (Isaiah 53:5; Revelation 7:17; 21:4). Those scars will tell the story of what God has brought us through, and they will give us cause for rejoicing. We who have shared in Jesus’ sufferings will also share in his glory. I don’t know exactly what it looks like, but somehow, and in some way, our future scars will be better in light of eternity. They will be purpose-filled scars. And no scars will be more precious than the scars of Jesus. In light of this reality, 1 John 3:2 carries even deeper meaning.

Beloved, we are God’s children now,
and what we will be has not yet appeared;
but we know that when he appears
we shall be like him,
because we shall see him as he is.

After meditating on the scars of Jesus, I wrote this song. I hope it lifts your heart in praise to the Savior and gives you hope that your own scars, though bitter now, will be sweet in eternity.

His Countless Scars

Vs. 1
Behold the undefiled,

Perfect, holy Child,
No blemish marks his soft unbroken skin.
His mother takes his hand, 
Tries to understand
How he could save his people from their sin.

Vs. 2
Behold him on a tree

Cut with agony,
His body pierced with nail and thorn and spear.
My penalty reversed,
Jesus bears my curse,
His wounds declare me free from guilt and fear.

For his countless scars cannot fade away,
Although marked and marred, Jesus lives today.
And his nail-prints prove, as he pleads for me,
My debt is paid in full at Calvary. 

Vs. 3
Behold him in a tomb,

Wrapped in shroud and gloom,
Concealing wounds that guarantee my cure.
Then rising, glorified,
See his hands and side,
His body marked with mercy’s signature!

For his countless scars cannot fade away,
Although marked and marred, Jesus lives today.
And his nail-prints prove, as he pleads for me,
My debt is paid in full at Calvary. 

© Copyright 2019 by Cameron Pollock


2 thoughts on “Surgeries & Scars

Add yours

  1. Thank you, Pastor Cameron.

    Looking for peace and joy in this troubled world?Remember to read your Bible every day!

    Bonnie Proverbs 3:5&6


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