But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) Ephesians 2:4-5
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17
Even though it is in the past, many of our wounds still feel fresh. When someone gets too close and touches them, we cringe and recoil. They hurt too much. They remind us of things we wish we could forget. But, the pain brings those events back to the surface. We relive the hurt all over again.
Sometimes these wounds come at the hands of others. It might have been harsh words, inconsiderate actions or unspeakable events. Other times, these wounds are a result of our own heart making an appearance in a not so nice way. Broken promises, lies, addictions, bad behavior or exchanging our integrity for some immediate need.
Regardless of how these wounds and scars became a part of us, our reaction to them is the same. We hide from our past because of shame, judgment, and disappointment. We cover up our scars from God and others. We keep everyone at a safe distance.
Our scars become our identity. Anytime we look in the mirror, the only reflection we see staring back at us is our hurt and shame. Without even knowing it, our past can infiltrate our present and influence our future. We walk into the future looking backwards. Rather than seeing what is ahead, we spend our days captivated by the rearview mirror.
Something must change. If we allow our past experiences to define our future, our future will look no different than our past. For God to transform our character He must have access to “all of us,” including our past and our future. We need to learn from our past, not be defined by it. We must review our past experiences looking for God’s presence instead of using it to build a case for not moving forward.
Jesus shows us His scars to remind us that He cares about our own. He meets our shame with forgiveness. We might see brokenness, but Christ sees beauty. From our limited perspective, we convince ourselves that due to our past there is no way God can use us to make a difference in this world. Yet, God uses us as instruments in the lives of others.
God chooses us despite our past. We are free from trying to change our past when we understand His promise to redeem it. God can take any brokenness and turn it into a perfect picture of His love. So, what would it look like to turn your scars into a beautiful story of redemption?
What would it look like for God to free you from your past?
God, I do my best to hide my scars from You and everyone else. Every time I notice my scars I feel ashamed. The pain seems so fresh. I relive those moments again and again. If I'm being honest, I've allowed my wounds and scars to define me. Today, may I expose my wounds and allow them to be touched by Your grace, mercy, and love. Allow me to trust that in the midst of my brokenness that You saved me and redeemed me. In Your name, Jesus. Amen.