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God is in the business of redemption—taking broken things and making them whole again. These are stories from in our midst, stories that many of you have shared anonymously over the last few weeks. Read how God has redeemed our scars.

  1. Our marriage was broken beyond what we ever would have thought could be repaired. It all came to a head one Easter night with what was my worst nightmare come to life. But in the end, the impossible happened. We found a way to humble ourselves, putting that 6 year marriage on the cross, offering up our individual lives, and asking God to unite us in marriage again, but this time with Christ in the middle. We have a completely different marriage, one that points to God’s faithfulness instead of to us. There’s not a day that I don’t think about what God did that night. God redeemed my scars by saving our marriage.

  2. God exposed some of the secrets of my life. Honestly, I didn’t want Him to because I was too selfish and ashamed. But He cared enough to expose them, so that I could see their ugliness more clearly. He gave me the courage to ask for help from other strong believers so those sins wouldn’t have to be secrets any more. There was power in that, and strength in being supported and prayed for. He’s using my mistakes—and my honesty—to help others struggling with the guilt, shame, and stronghold of secret sins. God redeemed my scars when He brought secret sins of mine into the light.

  3. Because of the example of a strong, Christian friend, God took my life from having two separate parts—one at church and one at school—and made them one. God redeemed my scars by giving me the courage to stop being a hypocrite.

  4. My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was 9 years old, enduring a year of chemo and radiation. I carefully watched my mom’s faithfulness, seeing her keep her focus on Christ. It was that faithfulness that opened my heart to the Holy Spirit. I became a Christian because of my mom’s journey through breast cancer. God redeemed my scars by using my mom’s example to lead me to salvation.

  5. My relationship with my parents was always one of favoritism, which they thought was a gift to me, but which created deep wounds in my relationship with my siblings. The facade of the perfect Christian family masked dissension, abuse, fear, and sadness. The scars of the past still have raw edges that sometimes hurt, but they do not defeat me like they once did. They remind me that God can create beauty even from the most broken life. God redeemed my scars when he heard me even before I could call out for help.

  6. My twin sister passed away from cancer in my room, and it took me a long time to accept that she had really died. But with the help of my special friends [in the happy singers] and my sweet grandmother, I know that I will see her again someday. God redeemed my scars when I realized it was not my time to see my Heavenly Father yet.

  7. God loved me through a crisis pregnancy. I was angry. I was broken. I was hurt. But God healed those wounds. He called my son—that son—to be a missionary. A short 36 years later, I’m still experiencing restoration. God redeemed my scars by restoring what I thought was lost.

  8. My son was an alcoholic. He once told me he took his first drink at age 14, a drink that led to a lifetime of heartache and struggle. The talent for school, medicine, radiology, and cardiology were overcome by his addiction, an illness that took his career, marriage, and family from him. Over the course of a decade, I spent countless hours with him in the hospital and rehab facilities, encouraging him and praying that he would be able to live without dependency on alcohol. And then, when things seemed to be repaired and fixed, he relapsed, a decision that caused his death. A mother's love for her son is very precious, and God's love for us even more so. Even in the midst of the pain, fear, and guilt, I felt God's presence, strength, and guidance. And, I rest in the assurance that comes from knowing my son knew Jesus Christ as his Savior. God redeemed my scars through the cherished memories of the good times I spent with my son.

  9. Christ took two people from broken marriages and united us into a new Christian family. We were about to start over in him! God redeemed my scars by turning brokenness into blessing.

  10. My mother and I had a difficult relationship, characterized by mistrust,misunderstanding, and a shallow kindness. I longed for a deep and loving relationship with her, but never experienced it. Yet as my mother’s health began to fail, my visits with her each month became richer and richer. The walls lowered and her spirit softened. Perhaps mine did, too. God removed whatever barriers had been present for all those years. My mother is in heaven now, and I am blessed that God allowed us to enjoy the special love between a mother and daughter, even if only for a season. God redeemed my scars by answering my life-long prayer.

  11. A friend is a simple yet profound gift from God. He’s given me a best friend who loves me unconditionally, pointing to God’s character. Through all my mistakes, she’s been there for me, living the gospel with me. She holds me accountable, confronts my sin, and pushes me to be the best Christ-follower I can be. God has redeemed my scars by giving me a friend who follows Christ.

  12. At 30 years old, I was single and lonely. I sat in the pew with my parents at Christmas and soberly thought that, once my parents died, no one in the world would care about me. I would be truly alone. But soon the words of Christ became alive to me. “Who are my mother and my brothers?” I recalled. “Those who do the will of my father.” I was overwhelmed with the sure knowledge that the Church was my family—the elders, my parents, and my peers my brothers and sisters. God redeemed my scars by giving me a family of faith.

  13. So far, it has been a year of pain, grief, and loss for me that has almost been too much to bear. But I have also seen God's mercy and provision in ways that I could never have imagined. God has put people in my path who have been the very definitions of prayer warrior and support. This has given me the strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other and to try to look for opportunities to pay it forward. God redeemed my scars by giving me the faith to trust Him for my future.

  14. I had already accepted Him into my life but I had never really understood the impact of the gospel and Jesus on the here and now of my life. I was way beyond lost, and in the brokenness Jesus really came into my personal life and wanted to know me, my heart, and wants the best for me. He proved his goodness, and I’ve never felt joy like what is Jesus-Joy. Now I’m just trying to keep growing and knowing more and more about my Savior. God redeemed my scars by opening my eyes to the power of the Gospel.

  15. Just a few years ago, I experienced an unwanted divorce. That lonely and painful experience is not yet a scar, but instead a healing wound. Nevertheless, I know that the Lord is going to keep me, and has given me the strength to deepen my relationship with Him. My faith is weak and my efforts are inadequate, but His faithfulness and steadfast love are enough to hold me. I have scars from my past, some self-inflicted and some not, but through all of these God has been the one who kept me. God redeemed my scars by being faithful in the midst of divorce.

  16. I was struggling to grow closer to God, obsessed with getting one answer from him about something I really cared about, yet neglected to open my eyes to everything else he had in store for me. Thankfully, He gave me a Godly influence to talk to, a friend who gave me amazing advice on how to faithfully more forward. Through the Word and a lot of prayer, God has healed that wound and opened my eyes to much more. God redeemed my scars by teaching me that his plans are better than mine could ever be.