I wish they had surgical glue when I was a kid.  My face would have been better for it.  I have more facial scars than most people I know–and great stories to go along with them:  slamming my own head in a car door; tripping in front of a wood carving of a fisherman holding a turtle upside-down (with a really sharp tail that gashed my 3 yr. old lip…)  My girls are always asking me to tell the story of “how I got that scar.”

But Ellie’s sweet face wasn’t meant to be the manuscript for those kind of silly, painful and “permanent” stories.  She got her first “storyline” last Tuesday night.  Her cute forehead met the edge of our workdesk upstairs as she reached down for a pencil and punctured a nice 1/2  inch diagonal slice right in the center of it.  As a dad, I must say the blood that spurted out of the cut was cool (but terrifying to look at–especially for her sister…).  As the blood flowed, we quickly grabbed an old washcloth to press on the wound,  and loaded my still-whimpering Ellie into the car to head off to the Convenient Care Center.

As I drove and talked with Ellie, I mourned the fact that her once scarless face would never be the same again.  Of all things, Ellie’s new scar is a hopeful reminder that, because of Christ’s arrival during Advent, it’s only temporary.  I’m mad she’ll have it for this lifetime, but because of Christ lowering himself to become a perfect, sinless Savior, that scar is just a reminder that her body’s just a rental.

Born into squalid filth, Jesus arrived as a perfect, beautiful baby boy.  I’m sure He earned his share of scars on his rental body over thirty-three years, too.  So, in the end, Ellie’s first scar is only temporary:  a simple reminder to be thankful this Advent that, like Isaiah said,

“By his stripes, we are healed.”

Forever and ever.