A few years back I was privileged to lead a choir retreat at a beautiful campground in the Black Hills of South Dakota. We were well into the afternoon when a middle school student, who was watching the younger kids, ran in calling for my wife and I to come quickly. My heart stopped. When we got to the playground a group of people were surrounding, back then what was, our youngest child. She had flipped over backwards on a piece of playground equipment and caught her calf on a bolt and ripped a two and a half-inch, v-shaped, gash in her leg, but we did not know that at the time. She was surrounded by a Boy Scout troop that just “happened” to come out of the woods at the very moment our daughter had her accident. In the troop there just “happened” to be a doctor and a nurse who cleaned, packed and bandaged our daughter’s leg, that was why we did not know the extent of the gash. 30 some-odd stitches, a very patient ER doctor and several years later there is an almost perfect V on the back of her leg serving as a memorial, a scar of grace.
God does that you know, He allows things into our lives to mold us, shape us, to break us. Though I really wish my girl had never had to experience the pain she did. God provided though His wonderful sovereign providence lessons we would have not learned otherwise. In a recent message Pastor John Piper said “when God undertakes a great thing… He breaks people.” I have found that to be true. Many times in my life God has had to sit me down to school me in an area of my life I would have otherwise ever addressed.
So how about you? What scars of grace has God used to refine you?
In 1 Samuel 7 – Samuel builds a memorial to remind everyone of God’s provision and protection of Israel. Samuel places a stone, which the text calls an ebenezer to be the remembrance. I know this brings to mind Charles Dickens, but before Dickens drew a breath, Samuel said ebenezer means memorial. That is why we sing “here I raise my ebenezer” in the great hymn Come Thou Fount. So… praise God for the scars, worship Him and raise up your own ebenezer!
Remember what the Lord told the Apostle Paul “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”