We all have them. Some of us are given them at birth. Some of us acquire them along the way. Some come from no fault of our own, some come from choices we make. Some are given to us by others, accidentally or unfortunately, on purpose. But eventually we all become one of the walking wounded.
This is not a sad soliloquy that follows. This is an affirmation that we carry our scars, our imperfections for a reason. God, Goddess, Higher Power, or Collective Humanity. Whichever you subscribe to, assigns no shame on where you are or where you have been. You have a story and that is what is important. You have insight, that is what is important. You have advice, that is what is important. Your imperfections, your scars are a gift.
Some of us can just roll up our sleeves and it is obvious from the cigarette burns, razor slashes or track marks. Our stories are easier seen. Some of us need to unzip our bodies to show the scars on our psyche, our hearts, our souls in order to assure those around us of our commonality. Some of our struggles are ongoing. I would venture to say, most of our struggles are ongoing. Some of us need a drink to steady our hand, some of us will crave something for the rest of our lives even though we have turned away from the tray. Some of us will flinch if anything moves quickly on our periphery.
These scars, these experiences, we should not hide out of fear or shame. These are gifts we can bring to others. So many of us feel alone. Isolated. Misunderstood. We feel less than, looked down upon, judged, minimized. These scars you bear could be your brother's salvation.
"Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
published January 2010
First Congregational United Church of Christ