Today, five years ago, I cut myself for the first time. This was my freshman year of high school, right after my dad and granddad’s birthday dinner. I was right in the midst of all my friends hating me, or rather, me convincing myself they hated me. I felt so alone. I remember dragging that blade across my wrist for the first time, and the relief I felt. I could finally focus on another type of pain, tangible pain, so I thought. As I did this, I told myself “This is just one time, you won’t get addicted.” Yet, for the next two and a half years, I found myself in the same situation. I wanted temporary relief from my worldly problems. I wanted to focus on the blood, scabs and scars instead of the internal pain in my heart.
I write this today, because while I am reminded of my loneliness and pain, I am also reminded of the redemption of God. In the moments of me hurting myself, my Jesus was there, taking the cuts for me. I wasn’t alone; He was there with me, carrying me, when I was trying to run away. He loved me, when I did not love myself. He was with me when it felt as though no one else was. Jesus saved me by dying on the cross 2000 years ago, but he continually saved me each and every time I cut myself.
It has now been three years since my last cut. My scars are fading away. At first, I was sad when I noticed they were fading. I thought I would somehow forget about how God saved me, I thought I would slip back into my old ways. But only through the grace of God, I haven’t. Though the temptation is still there some days, I remind myself of the scars my Jesus took for me. I no longer have to bleed because Jesus already did! What good news!
“We all have scars. Even after we’ve healed from our betrayals, mishaps, and suffering: scars remain. But as we run our fingers along their rough edges; may we not feel bitterness or self-pity or guilt. May we feel redeemed.” –Mike Donehey
Soli Deo Gloria,