By Jessica S. Hosman
A few nights ago while playing with Bliss (our playful 50-pound Golden Retriever), Zechariah tossed her rubber bone into the air just as he had done hundreds of times before. She eagerly jumped up to fetch it and crashed down with a thud — at the very moment my three-year old decided to step underneath her and look up. Bad combination! As our dog’s airborne body abruptly came down, it directly collided with Zechariah. Immediately he began to cry and ran into my arms as I snuggled and covered him with prayer. Within brief minutes, his tears were subsiding but as he pulled away from my arms I saw blood trickling down from his head. Turns out it wasn’t just Bliss’s head that crashed into his, two of her teeth sank deep into his forehead as well!
The next morning my son woke up with two perfectly round holes in his forehead that may leave a permanent scar. But instead of viewing them as a sign of defeat, he is viewing them as a mark of honor. Like a proud battle wound earned by a soldier, he is excited about his holes and is even making repetitive trips to the mirror to ensure they’re still there!
I look back over the past year and see a lot of areas where I feel like I’ve been knocked in the head similar to what my little one recently experienced. My scars might not be as visible as Zechariah’s, but they’re still there. Up until this point I had been viewing them as a mark of defeat and failure but through my son I am able to begin seeing them as a mark of survival and victory. Two puncture wounds coupled with the blunt force of 50-pounds crashing down on his head could have taken my son out — but it didn’t. Instead he rose up and proudly shows off his war wounds as a mark of a warrior who was not defeated but instead overcame.
The same can be true for us. The wounds and scars we have endured this past year might have been painful — but they didn’t take us out. We survived the battles that surrounded them and now we have the opportunity to walk into the new year with victory and strength. When we think of the wounds and the circumstances that brought them about, we can choose to feel defeated and void of hope, or we can look at them as marks of survival and recognize that God can use our wounds to remind us of the strength He daily fills us with to overcome the next challenge ahead. For me, I will look at my son, look at those scars and choose to believe that I too can arise from my circumstances and walk in the strength and victory of Christ. My prayer for you is that you would be able to look at your wounds and do the same.
I don’t know the weight that crashed down on you or what trials may have tried to consume you over the past year, but I do know they didn’t succeed. Just like Zechariah, you are a warrior. You survived the battle and are breathing fresh breath today. There’s purpose in that. There is purpose for your life. There is purpose for you. May that truth consume and empower you each day of the new year ahead.