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Strength to Care

Lessons from Matthew & Isaac – Our CHARGE Syndrome Journey

Wounds or Scars…

May 1…exactly 1 month since Matthew had his heart surgery to repair his leaking mitral valve. Interestingly, it has only been in the last week or maybe a little more that Matthew has allowed us to raise his shirt and look at his chest…He even posed for some pictures for me today. The wound, or incision has almost completely healed now…even though his chest may not be completely fused at this time.

Of course, I am always looking for topics and lessons that I could write about for the blog, I started to think about why Matthew didn’t want us to look at his wound, but would allow us to now look at his scar?

“There is something beautiful about all scars of whatever nature. A scar means the hurt is over, the wound is closed and healed, done with.”  Harry Crews

I started to recall the many scars on my body…as a carpenter I have many of them on my hands, some on my arms and legs and even a few on my head. Each one has a story that goes with it. Some of them I am not too proud of as they were the result of doing something stupid like shooting a nail through my finger with a nail gun or the improper use of a utility knife. Matthew has a few that were the result of carelessnes or simply caused by an unfortunate accident. Today I counted 7 larger scars on Matthew’s body that were intentional, a result of a decision that we made for him…surgeries that we put him through to make his life better, to make his life more comfortable, and to prevent further pain for him.

Does that last sentence sound familiar? It is now a week past Easter when we celebrate the ressurection of Jesus from the dead. But first we went through a period of refection on why he did it in the first place.

“But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.”  Isaiah 53:5 NIV

Don’t read too deeply in to this statement, but with Matthew being my son I was struck by the fact that Jesus now shows the scars of 7 distinct wounds…two hands, two feet as the result of nails, a pierced side from a sword, wounds on his head from a crown of thorns and on his back from a leather strap or reed as he was scourged. All intentional for our benefit, to make our life better, more comfortable and to prevent further pain for us.

Thomas was not with the other apostles when Jesus first appeared to them after his resurrection…he said he wouldn’t believe until he was able to place his fingers in the wounds on his hands and side. I, like many may say or have said how silly his comments were…after all the other apostles have already seen the risen Lord…wasn’t their witness enough?

I speak for Theresa as well when I say that we prayed and thought long and hard about each wound that we intentionally made the decision to have made with Matthew…God did the same for you and me. There are wounds that have healed in my life as a result of the suffering His son endured for me. Like Matthew, when they were still wounds, it was hard for me to let people look at them. But, now that they are scars I can proudly witness the power of healing and allow the story to be told.

My prayer this week is to continue to believe without having to see the nail scarred hands…to believe the witness of others as they tell the stories of their scars and the healing that has taken place. And, that I may wear my scars well and not let them turn back to wounds…the healing has already taken place!

Do you have wounds that you just won’t let go of and let heal? Start to turn them into scars today…

Many have asked if it is okay to share this blog about our Lessons from Matthew…not only is okay, but we emphatically ask that you would. We welcome any chance to show how good God is and how he is working through the power of prayer.