Last week as I was enjoying my morning coffee on the deck overlooking the lake in the Carolinas, I was reading and thinking about Thomas. If you have followed this blog long enough, you know that I've written several posts about Thomas, the doubter, from the book of John. Maybe it's because I feel like I relate to him quite a bit. Does that surprise you? It shouldn't.
I wrote earlier this year how I liked the Old Testament better because I felt as though I could relate better with those in the OT. They hadn't walked/talked PHYSICALLY with Jesus like those in the New Testament. I struggle with that a lot. There are some days in which I've said "I need Jesus with SKIN today!"
So while thinking about Thomas, the Lord began to reveal a new aspect of this story to me. Most of us know the story...Jesus had been crucified, dead for 3 days, and then raised. When Jesus first met up with the disciples after all this had taken place, Thomas was not with them. So when the disciples told Thomas that Jesus was alive- Thomas didn't believe them. He said "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 it."
A week later, Jesus appeared to Thomas and said "put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe."
Jesus showed him the scars.
The scars were what led Thomas to believe.
Are you willing to show your scars?
We all have them. Maybe a past eating disorder. Maybe a previous spending addiction. A marriage that was on the brink of divorce. An immoral addiction. I don't need to keep listing things. You all know what yours are. What if, knowing that by showing your scars, someone would come to know Jesus in a personal way and choose to believe in Him if you would just be vulnerable enough to do just that?
Beth Moore has taught a session titled "Scars Don't Hurt."
In this teaching- she talks about the difference between a scar and a wound. If I saw a wound on your knee and came and pressed on it- it would hurt. But if I pressed on a scar- there would be no pain. You would feel me pressing, but it wouldn't evoke pain.
I'm not suggesting you go around showing people your open flesh wounds....raw pain that you are still dealing with.
But what about the areas that are healed? It's actually a good indicator for you, too, to know if you have allowed complete healing in that area of your life. If someone brings up a subject regarding your past pain and your first thought is to avoid discussion, or to lash out...chances are, that is not a scar. That is a wound that still needs to heal.
I think so often we are tempted to hide our scars so that no one sees them. We say to ourselves "that's in the past. It's over and done with." While they may not evoke pain anymore- we've just been conditioned to hide them for so long that we don't even consider revealing them.
Have you ever thought that maybe showing people the one thing you work so hard to hide might be what brings someone to know Jesus?
There are people in your life dealing with similar things to what you have dealt with in the past and overcome. They think they are either alone, or that it's a pain they will never be able to get rid of.
They doubt God's ability to heal or forgive.
You've got a scar that you can show them.
Be Jesus to a Thomas in your life.