|"The Invitation" by Jenedy Paige|
Something struck me this morning as I read again one of my favorite verses:
"Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands."*
As part of the Savior's Atonement, He was nailed to a cross and crucified. They drove large nails into the tender palms of His hands, as well as His wrists and feet. The reality of that very real, excruciating, and terrible experience is too unbearable to let my thoughts linger there for very long.
I find hope in His resurrection. His pain is over. The Atonement is complete. This means my pain can be lessened and I can be saved. My heart and thoughts visit this often.
The resurrected Savior had a perfect, glorified body. But, He chose to keep the scars on His hands. Why: So people would have a tangible way of believing who He really was. **
But, as I read the above verse I am moved to a deeper personal meaning behind the immortal scars.
To me, they signify my connection with Him.
We often focus on how the Savior is a part of us, but, with these scars, we are, literally, a part of Him.
He carries us with Him every moment of every day.
These scars represent His love for me and my love for Him.
They represent a connection that He won't break. (We can choose to, but His commitment to us is solid and eternal.)
We are tethered to Him forever, through sacrifice on His part, obedience on our part and love shared between us.
The first part of the Atonement took place in the Garden of Gethsemane where He took upon Himself our pain and sorrow. Here is where, I believe, our union with Him began, where we became a literal part of Him. He felt all of our grief and pain and anguish for us.
Then He hung and gave up His life to pay the price for our sins. And when He rose again, He kept the scars.
He kept His scars so we don't have to keep ours.
He kept His scars so we don't have to doubt.
He kept His scars so we know we are remembered.
He kept His scars so we can see our place in His life.
We are connected to Him in a tender and eternal way-- us on His hands and Him in our hearts.
This makes Him feel all the more real to me. It awakens my sense of obligation in my part of the Atonement. He performed it, but I am the one now must use it. He cannot be a Savior without someone to save, so I willingly let Him save me.
We are a part of Him.
YOU are a part of Him.
He isn't just a part of your life, but you are a part of His, then and right now.
So what can we do?
He performed the Atonement and made us a part of Him. We can choose to let the Atonement perform in us and make Him a part of us. We can put our hand in His. We can let Him love us. We can let Him heal us. We can choose to let go of our pride and anger and let Him change us.
We are a part of Him, this is certain.
Now, we can choose to let Him be a part of us.
* (1 Nephi 21:16, Nephi quoting Isaiah quoting the Lord).
**Jesus allowing others to touch His resurrected, scarred hands: John 20:20; John 20:27; Luke 24:39; Matthew 28:9; 3 Nephi 11:14-15)