Victim or victor?

It’s not the wound that shapes our lives,
it’s the choice we make as adults
between embracing our wounds
or raging against them.

Geneen Roth

Have you ever noticed how everyone you meet seems normal at first, but the better you get to know them the more flawed and odd they turn out to be? One result of the Fall is that we’re all wounded, by circumstances, by other people, by our own poor choices.

The issue is whether we let our wounds shape our lives or simply inform them. Some people love to nurture their hurts, they are ready at any moment to reel off the litany of what this person did, or that person said. They’ll use those wounds as walls to hide behind or as weapons to attack with. They will allow the wounds to turn them into victims or aggressors, but not into victorious, mature individuals.

We’re in Easter weekend right now, when we remember the wounds inflicted on Jesus, and as ever, he’s a useful model of how to deal with wounds.

~ He knew in advance they were coming, and didn’t flinch from them – in fact, he deliberately put himself in places where wounding would be inevitable

~ He didn’t provoke them, except by living a pure, Godly life in an ungodly world..

~ He never said ‘That’s not fair,’ or ‘I don’t deserve this.’ – He was secure enough in himself that he didn’t need justification by others. He knew he was right, he knew he was in the centre of God’s will, and that was sufficient – the wounds were powerless in light of his Father’s love and approval.

After his resurrection, though, he did display his wounds to others. Why? Not to gain sympathy, not to incite them to take revenge, but as proof of who he was.

Our wounds are not insignificant. Every scar tells a story, but the wound does not make us who we are. Jesus loved and forgave his killers, even as they were mocking him. He had a choice – to be a victim or the victor, and he chose victory. His scars remind us to go and do likewise.

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