Monday, April 9, 2018

The Scars Of God

I had a rather spirited conversation on Facebook last night about his response to the 60 Minute presentation on the Legacy Museum that is opening in Birmingham, Alabama.  The museum pays special attention to the history of lynching in America during the Jim Crow period.  Over 4000 black persons were lynched during this time; not just in the south, but all over America.

You can find a CNN story on this museum here:

My friend was maintaining that the story, and the creation of the museum, fanned the flames of hatred and anger in a way that was unproductive.  I disagreed.

As we messaged back and forth it struck me that many of the same arguments that my friend was making, and that others have made about the Holocaust well as conversations about racism and anti-Semitism, could be made about the fact that the resurrected Jesus came back complete with scars.

We humans are creatures that thrive on denial and avoidance.  We don't want to talk about school shootings because "it's too soon."  We don't want to talk about the Holocaust because it "brings up bad memories."  We don't want to talk about slavery, or Jim Crow, or lynching because we think that black folks should "just put that stuff behind you cause it's all over."  We do this kind of thing as a culture as well as in our private lives.  Tragedy, trauma, and pain get swept under the rug and never discussed....sometimes for generations.

Jesus shows the disciples His scars as a proof that it is Him.  But it is also a reminder.  A reminder of where we can go in our sin and our woundedness, of what we can do to each other.  And a reminder of the lengths that God will go to so that we can be healed and restored.

God carries the scars of God's love for us.  It is a doorway into the deepest part of God's heart.


Maren said...

Wow -- I have never put this together this way. Thank you so much.

Jeremy said...

Great bit of an interview with MLK on the issue on this point: