Where the Light Shines Through

Caring Bridge Journal Entry — Apr 7, 2018

Thank you all for your kind and encouraging words after my last post. Grief is a difficult thing because we can experience it with any loss, not just the death of a loved one. I know I'm not alone in this. For example, my friend Justin survived melanoma but lost a chunk of his scalp in the process. My friend Doug fell off a roof and after months of surgeries, finally lost his foot to save his life. My friend Karen's brain tumor just returned. We all have to learn to live in our new realities newly aware that we cannot assume we will live to see our youngest children married. But that comes with the privilege of fully embracing each day as a gift. Thank you for encouraging me to see the gift.

On that note...The final stitch in my incision finally fell out. I took a good look at my new scar (a task which requires multiple mirrors) and decided it's not too awful.

I have several scars and they all stay under wraps easily with a modest wardrobe. This new scar will be harder to hide once summer tank-top weather arrives. (A Posterolateral Thoracotomy incision wraps from under my arm to my back, all the way up to my shoulder blade.) But as I was examining my new scar I wondered, "Do I need to hide it?"

It reminded me of a line from a Switchfoot song, "Where the Light Shines Through":

Momma ain't a scar just a vision of grace?...The wound is where the light shines through

That's a new way to think about my scars. To see them as visible reminders of God's grace. And it's so true. This scar reminds me that God lined everything up so that my life was saved through a very invasive surgery. Back when I had my first bleed (16 years ago), so little was known about HHT, and even less about HHT during pregnancy, that the doctors really just did the best they could to keep me and unborn Junior alive. Praise the Lord, we made it!

Chris thinks God prevented me from having another bleed (and a much more serious bleed) for 16 years so that technology could catch up with my need. This scar is a reminder to me that God is soveriegn. He kept me alive for 16 carefree years and put me in the hands of very advanced healthcare workers in a country where excellent medical care is just a phone call away. That's a scar that screams GRACE. Perhaps, it's a scar that shouldn't be tucked away during 100 degree summer days. Perhaps, it's a scar that needs to be seen so that the story of God's grace can be told over and over again. That's where the Light that shines through, yes?Hmm...something to think about. I guess I have a few weeks to figure it out. Summer is a'coming.