It has been many years since that memorable Good Friday when a friend called to tell me her daughter had been molested and raped. Barely 14 years old, she was experiencing severe emotional issues including cutting. I had just finished a reading about the sacrifice and meaning of Good Friday. After I hung up the phone, I wept.
I barely knew her daughter and had just become friends with the mother, but this pain was a deep pain I knew all too well. I had some childhood traumas that made her story remind me of my own. Although that pain was long healed, I cried out to God and asked why, after such a complete and miraculous healing in my life, I would still have such pain and empathy over another’s trauma. When would that part of me be healed?
As I wept I also asked: Why do I still carry scars? I waited for my question to be answered in the silence and stillness of that moment. I was then reminded how Jesus himself went to heaven with his scars. That was an intentional choice as he could have made all things new. You see, Thomas needed to see those Good Friday scars on Jesus. He needed to know Jesus was who he said he was so Thomas would know he was real and alive.
It seems I also need my scars. I think of these lovely girls in India, pictured above, who have been in even more pain and seen more violence and suffering than even I can imagine. As I travel the world and meet women just like them, I can weep with them, I can laugh with them and I can tell them stories about my scars and my healing. When I allow them to touch my scars, like Thomas touched the scars of Jesus, they can also know Jesus is real. I am scarred for life, yet I walk in healing.