She had a scar on her shoulder. 

A thin, white, neat line 
travelling smoothly across her skin, 
sliding under her shirt strap. 

Some surgery, perhaps? some accident? 
Whatever its origin, 
sometime
somehow 
somewhere 
somewhy -  
something wounded that woman. 

Cut her skin and her flesh 
deeply enough 
to leave a permanent mark.  

I saw it only for a moment, 
deep in conversation with a friend. 
Yet the irony escaped me till much later - 
For as we spoke it was clear 
for those with ears to hear, 
that I, too, have a scar. 

Not on my shoulder but on my heart. 
Sometime 
somehow 
somewhere 
somewhy - something wounded this woman. 

Cut her soul and spirit 
deeply enough 
to leave a permanent mark.  

And my friend needed only see it for a moment,  
to respond with compassion 
to listen and empathize 
to acknowledge my scar and share something of her own. 
But not as oneupmanship, oh no! 
none of that "wait till you see my scar' nonsense.   

Instead, 
a beautiful 
mutual
recognition 
that scars shout survival.   

My scar is my scar 
and your scar is your scar 
yet when we are brave enough to share them  
and humble enough to own them 
we find we are not alone 
in baring them 
and bearing them. 

For if it takes a scar to know a scar, 
then by our scars - we can be known.   

We have scars on our shoulders. 
But in the presence of the Great Physician, 
they offer proof of healing. 
They are not flaws, 
not weaknesses, 
not imperfection.  
Christ's scars 
- the fingerprints of salvation - 
transform my scars
to fingerprints of resurrection.

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