Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Hast Thou No Scar?

Amy Carmichael was an Irish missionary in India, who opened an orphanage and founded a mission in Dohnavur. She served in India for fifty-five years without furlough and authored many books about the missionary work there. One story of Carmichael's early life tells that as a child, she wished that she had blue eyes rather than brown. She often prayed that God would change her eye color and was disappointed when it never happened. As an adult, however, she realized that, because Indians have brown eyes, she would have had a much more difficult time gaining their acceptance if her eyes had been blue.
In 1931, Carmichael was badly injured in a fall, which left her bedridden much of the time until her death. She died in India in 1951 at the age of 83. She asked that no stone be put over her grave; instead, the children she had cared for put a bird bath over it with the single inscription "Amma", which means mother in the Tamil.
One of Amy's more well-known poems is called "Hast thou no scar?"
Hast thou no scar?
No hidden scar on foot, or side, or hand?
I hear thee sung as mighty in the land;
I hear them hail thy bright, ascendant star.
Hast thou no scar?

Hast thou no wound?
Yet I was wounded by the archers; spent,
Leaned Me against a tree to die; and rent
By ravening beasts that compassed Me, I swooned.
Hast thou no wound?

No wound? No scar?
Yet, as the Master shall the servant be,
And pierc├Ęd are the feet that follow Me.
But thine are whole; can he have followed far
Who hast no wound or scar?

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