Choosing the Scars

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If you asked me for proof of whether God exists and whether He works in the lives of people, I would ask you to peer into my life; for I believe its in the story of our lives where He does His best work. If you could have been watching, you would have seen a girl kneeling by her bed, the one with the ruffly pink chenille bedspread, the one our dog always peed on when it was fresh from the laundry, knowing even then that God was listening.

God has His fingerprint on us from the start, and either we are born with someone in our lives who confirms that or denies it. One thing I know, throughout our lives God keeps tapping us on the shoulder, trying to remind us He’s still there.

My life has been shot through with miracle after miracle, and so has yours. I was born 3 months early in a time when that was a real emergency. If we hadn’t been visiting my Aunt, who lived very close to Stanford Hospital when my Mom went into labor, I may have been returned to sender even before I took a breath.

Flash forward to aged 12 where I sat in the dermatologist office for the first time, a curtain of hair hanging in front of a face marred with early onset adult cystic acne. Around that same time, I walked down the church aisle and gave my life to the Lord, because I knew I needed saving in more ways than one.

If you took a slice out of my life during the ensuing years, you would see many good times doing things together as a family, but you would also see hard days when my Dad hated his job, and mornings when my Mom had to literally pray me out the door before the onslaught of the school day.

And even all these years later I can still feel her hand in mine and hear her voice when she prayed those prayers in the mornings by the light of the fire.  

Those prayers carried me through High School where I so much wanted to belong but remained locked inside myself because I didn’t know how to be friends with myself let alone anyone else. Every now and then the acne was not as bad, and I almost felt free, but then it would come back and I would retreat again, inside my music and the dark scrawling in the notebook I carried wherever I went.

All those years the Spirit held me close, but those years also left scars that I didn’t let Him heal and because the mirror I used to view myself was a distorted one, I never saw the beauty that others saw, I just saw the scars.

Then, I went on a diet and lost a few pounds and got a few compliments. I became intoxicated with something I could actually control and I found that when I refused food that I really liked I felt a power I had never felt before.

I became my own superhero and 83 pounds was still not thin enough.

But God still held me fast. He heard the tearful prayers of my parents. One night I had a dream that was suffused with a golden light and when I awoke the next morning I knew that the demon had lost and God had won. I ate forbidden scrambled eggs and then the real work started.

In the dark mornings, God and I would get up and run when no one else could see me. Later, my Dad and I (and God) ran together. Rain or shine, we were out there. In the eighties, I joined the throng of women wearing “Flashdance” sweatshirts and leg warmers and traded one addiction for another.

And all these years later when I hear that song on the radio?  I smile and remember those days when I got my health back and felt beautiful for the first time in my life ever.

And knowing God was with me all along.

Today, if you’ve ever wondered if there was a God I challenge you to look at your own life and count up all the things you’ve come through.

You are here friend, because He wanted you here.

Right now today where you stand, wherever you stand, He loves you. He has already partnered with you, all you have to do is accept His invitation to partner with Him. Years later, when you are looking back at your life the way I am looking at mine now, and trust me on this, it is the one thing you will never, ever regret.

And if my scars made the difference between knowing Him and not knowing Him? I would choose the scars every single time.

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