Suki's Scars

Yahoo! News recently published an article about Suki, a horse in Pennsylvania who has literally been through fire. When the barn where she boarded caught on fire, Suki suffered burns over two-thirds of her body. She went through extensive surgeries and treatment for her injuries.

Now, the horse who walked through fire has found a new calling. Suki is a therapy animal for burn victims. The above-posted article goes into greater detail of Suki's life story and current work, but one of the most poignant moments in the story comes from Bill Wilson, who lost fingers on one hand due to burns and met Suki at a support group. When he fed Suki, he tells of the following reaction:

"[Suki's} ears kind of perked up as if to say, 'I don't feel a full hand here,'" said Wilson. "At that moment, I was almost drawn to tears ... I felt that she knew that I had been injured, too."

Suki connects with people in pain because she has suffered the same pain. In the same vein, God has identified with our human pain through Jesus Christ. Isaiah 53 speaks prophetically of Christ as a suffering servant who was "despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief..... who has born our griefs and carried our sorrows."

When we pray to God, we're not only praying to the almighty Creator but also to the pain-stricken carpenter. Jesus felt the cuts, burns, and bruises of humanity, and when we cry out in pain, he knows that pain intimately. When we go through trials and tribulations, what we often want to do is throw a Self-Pity Party. But we must avoid that tendency and instead use the fiery trials as opportunities to encourage one another in similar plights. Suki's scars reassured an injured man that someone else understood the pain. Jesus' scars reassure us that he not only knows the pain but enables us to overcome the pain in community with one another.

grace to each of you,
Pastor Darian