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Thoughts and insights from Jubilee Church Wirral

Healing not brokenness

By Denise Griffiths, Jubilee Church Wirral

Some time ago I shared a word in church which has been brought back to me recently and I feel that God wants to remind us all, including myself, of it again.

The word was ‘Scars’.

This was in the context of the story commonly known as “Doubting Thomas” in John 20:

‘Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”’

What is striking is that Jesus had scars for Thomas to see and feel. This was the Son of God who had died, been buried and rose again, so he definitely had the power to remove those scars from his body but they were still there.

The question is why? This is what I felt led to share.

Firstly, Jesus had these scars, but they were clearly not painful as he asked Thomas to put his finger and hands on them. Scars are not a sign of brokenness, they are a sign of healing. I found that revelation profound.

I have scars from having to have two caesareans, and also an ovary removed. Now I could dwell on the fact that I could not give birth naturally to my daughters or that I had a large cyst and adhesions that made me unwell and were really painful.

However, what those scars really signify is the beginning of my children’s lives and a fulfilment of my desire to be a mother, as well as showing that my sickness and pain were taken away and I became well again.

Secondly, Jesus had scars that showed God’s power, they were marks that demonstrated how the world had been saved and that the relationship between man and God had been restored.

Not all scars are physical; they may also be emotional or mental, but in my own life the same applies. Those traumatic moments that I have had or the struggles that I have had to face demonstrate how God has been with me in all that has happened. He has given me the strength and peace to continue on, he has brought about breakthroughs and blessings, and he has comforted me at times when sadness has come, as it does at times for all of us.

These scars, like our physical ones, are a sign of healing and do not have to remain hidden; they are a witness to the greatness of God in all circumstances. Although part of us, we are free from the negative inferences of them, they have no hold over us in the Lord.

They do not define who we are because we have been transformed;

2 Corinthians 5:17:

‘Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!’

And they allow us to tell of the power of our real and living God;

2 Corinthians 12:9:

‘Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.’

Andrew Greenhalgh and Julie Greenhalgh Upton Life Group leaders Jubilee Church Wirral

Denise Griffiths, Jubilee Church Wirral

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