Faith, Hope, Pain and suffering

When Scars Fade

Today is September 9.

Mean anything to you? Probably not. But to me, September 9 is the anniversary of the day my life changed forever. September 9, 2008, is the day my husband was caught in an affair. Seven full years ago. September 9, 2009, is the day of our first court proceedings in the divorce process. Six full years ago.

You know what’s funny? It took me until 3:00 this afternoon to realize that it was the anniversary. Then, I really had to stop and think about how many years it had been. I went back and forth with myself, trying to remember if the anniversary was today or yesterday. I really could not remember.

It hasn’t always been that way. I used to call “her” husband every year on the anniversary. We used to check in with one another, see how things were going. I used to be moody around this time of the year. I used to remember every detail of that day, reviewing every memory so deeply etched into my mind.

I’m not exactly sure when the date could come and go without me realizing it. Probably just in the last couple of years. But this year? I had no clue. It hadn’t crossed my mind. I was oblivious to the time of the year.

This morning I met a couple of ladies who are walking this difficult path. We sat and talked about the hurt, the pain. I tried to encourage with all of the wonderful blessings I have received. I spent my morning using my pain to help others. Answered prayer.

It was as we talked that I realized it was “that time of the year,” but I mistakenly told the ladies yesterday was the anniversary. It wasn’t until hours later, when I saw the date written out, that it hit me.

  1. Simply. Laughed.

Laughed that God has brought me full circle. Laughed that God has used my pain to give me a ministry. Laughed in Satan’s face that what he meant for evil, God has used for good! It’s so good to laugh!

As I was thinking about the irony this evening, I began to think about a scar that I have.

(WARNING: I AM A NURSE! NOTHING IS OFF-LIMITS FOR ME!)

I have three beautiful, amazing, talented, wonderful, intelligent, witty, respectful, ornery, fun-loving kids. I simply can’t say enough good things about them (most days).

However, I might be one of the few mothers that has carried three babies and never had a labor pain. Yep. That’s my story.

You might be wondering how that is possible. Well, I’m not a very good pregnant lady. As a matter of fact, my doctor looked me in the face after my youngest was born, and said, “If you want to see the three you have grow up, you better not try to have any more.”

Point well understood.

Yes, pregnancy could have killed me. I had a rare and very dangerous condition known as HELLP syndrome with all three kids. And, because of the dangers to both me and the babies, all three of my children were born by c-section.

After my first two were born, I remember having these occasional pains in the area of my scar. My scar was bright red, and often painful. When my youngest was born, my doctor went in and cleaned out all of the scar tissue that had built up after my first two surgeries.

The result? I never have pain in my scar. I never notice it is there. As a matter of fact, I was trying to find my scar a few days ago. It’s faded, completely flesh colored. You cannot even see it.

Why? Because my doctor took the time to go in and clean up the mess from the previous injuries.

Isn’t that a lot like the pains we experience in life? Isn’t that where I am in relation to the wrongs done to me? Isn’t that what God does for us?

We experience these hurts, pains, devastation. They begin to heal, but sometimes they are still there—red, painful, irritated. They are very obvious, very clear to see.

But, when we let our Great Physician step in, he cleans up the mess. He may have to open that scar, clean out all of the hurt and pain that has grown up under it. The process of cleaning it up can be painful in and of itself.

But, if we let him use his expertise… If we let him have full reign…. If we sign the surgical consent form giving him permission to operate…

The results will be worth it. The scar will be barely visible. The pain and irritation will be gone. We will have to look long and hard to even see the mark left on our bodies. We will still have the beautiful work he did in our lives during the process (just as I have my children), but the tangible reminders of the damage will be gone.

Maybe you are not six or seven years into your journey. Maybe the hurt and pain are still fresh, the visible reminders still there. Maybe you can’t enjoy the blessings because you are mired too deep in the devastation.

Morning is coming, and joy comes in the morning.

Let the Great Physician cut you open, do surgery on you. Let him clean out all of the reminders of the hurt and the pain that have built up inside of you. Let him have his way.

It may not be tomorrow or the next day. It may not be next month or next year. But, if you surrender and let him do his work, I promise that one day you will barely even find the scar. You will look back and only remember the blessings he has poured out on you along the journey.

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14 thoughts on “When Scars Fade”

  1. Yes, I feel this way on January 4th, when my ex husband out of nowhere suddenly said he was leaving me. Then on January 29, when we divorced. It was such a very long marriage, and we knew each other since we were a fresh 14 and 15, and dated since we were 16 and 17. Then a nearly 30 year marriage. That has been most of my life with this one man! So what to do with so many memories is tough. The scars feel very deep to me – but just yesterday a sister was commenting on how far I come and how hard she has seen me work to adjust to a new life.

    1. It’s hard for us to see the progress sometimes. The scars and pain are deep. But God heals. It takes time. Lots of time. But he will put you back on your feet for good! (Read 1 Peter 5:10 in The Message)

  2. Thank you so much for sharing this! I so needed it! Every year I loath September,wish I could just sleep through it or pass over it.This year I’m determined to get through it without letting it bother me.Of course now I feel the pain as read this post but it’s ok because I’ve recently decided to let Father God have my wounds and scars so he can fully heal me. Even though it’s been years,I’m just beginning to let go of the hurt. Sept 8 is my ex~husband’s birthday,which I made through this year without hating the day.Our anniversary is Sept 13 (it would be 19 yrs this yr if we hadn’t divorced in Dec 2002). This Sept 16 will be 5 yrs my grandma who I was really close to passed away.

    1. Wow. All of it in one month. You are making the right choice, though. God take take away all of the scar tissue causing you pain. He can make it all fade away. Praying he heals you fully and completely.

  3. Wow, we have more in common! I also have three beautiful children and never experienced labor! Had three c-sections! I also went thru my separation at the same time you did! Fall 2008. But didn’t officially get divorced until May 2010. November is my rough month. It was our anniversary and the month my sister died on my birthday. Her birthday was also Nov. I get in a major funk every year at that time. I love reading your posts, it helps and I can relate to a lot of it. You’re an inspiration!! Thank you for sharing your struggles & heart & faith!!

    1. Thanks, Dana! We were on the same timeline. My divorce was final March 2010. I can imagine that it has to be difficult to have all of that in the same month. So glad God is faithful! We really need to get together and meet!

  4. I came across your article on Crosswalk. I am a pastor in Tennessee and most of the time I can rest in the words you shared about trust. The article is “What if You Risk Everything and God Doesn’t Come Through?” I really prayed and fasted hard for my marriage to be restored but instead she remarried within 7 weeks after our quick divorce. 3 years later I was offered my current job pastoring 90 minutes away from where I was sharing 50/50 custody with my ex. So I risked everything again believing He wanted me to bring my girls with me but at this point and 9K dollars of litigation later, it looks like to keep my job, I will have to give up custody. Please pray for me as my “truster” is becoming worn and about to give up. I do enjoy your blog and glad I found it. I also write. Here is an article about my experience if you want to read it. http://lifetimeinaday.blogspot.com/2015/02/grieving-loss-of-divorce-road-to-healing.html

    1. Hi Lewis. I’m so sorry for your pain. And fear. And frustration. And anger. And disappointment. I so understand. I have this overwhelming sense that God has a greater lesson somewhere deep within these disappointments. I am begging God to show me what that is. I do know that God has taken this incredible pain to change me, to make me more like him. He has transformed me like I never dreamed possible. He has carried me through and provided for me every step of the way. It’s been hard, miserable, painful. But, it’s been for my good. I wish I could take away all of the pain. I can’t. But you can bet that you are in my prayers!

  5. Dena,

    A beautiful and heartfelt sentiment. There are still scars from my marriage that I left behind a year ago after almost 14 1/2 years. God is a great physician. I may not be completely healed yet but slowly I’m realizing the blessings God has given me and my two children.

    1. The blessings are definitely abundant! He says the pure in heart will see him. When our hearts are pure, we are able to focus on the blessings rather than the pain! It’s a great way to live!

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