Your Scars are Your Strength

St. Mary Mackillop was the first canonized saint of Australia. She was born in the mid-1800’s and had a tough childhood. She was the first of eight kids and had a dad who loved them, but who failed at pretty much every business venture he attempted. By 14 she was helping to feed the family. Mary discovered she had a real gift for teaching, and felt God tugging her heart to use that gift serving other families who were struggling on the frontier of Australia. 

She became a religious sister and within about five years over 120 women joined her on the frontier. Her new community was scrutinized and misunderstood by her bishop so badly that he wrongly excommunicated her.

In time, he reinstated her, and she went to Rome where she got the official blessing and approval of Pope Pius IX. By the time she died, Mary had 750 sisters serving 12,500 students in 117 schools. When we see all the qualities God needed to make Mary a blessing to the world – her grit, her patience, her perseverance, her compassion for people in rough circumstances – it all came from the struggles she had as a kid. See, we tend to look at our hard times as the sources of our greatest weakness, but those are often the very things God uses to make us a blessing to the world. Scar tissue…it’s some of the strongest tissue in your body. The same is true of your soul.

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