A Japanese art form, known as Kintgsukuroi, or kintsugi, repairs cracked or broken pottery with gold or silver lacquer. The flaw is seen as a unique piece of the object’s history, which adds to its beauty. In a way, we are all kintsugi.
The Art of Scars
Just being alive guarantees we have at least one scar from an injury or surgery somewhere on our body. A scar forms when a wound, burn, or sore has not healed completely and fibrous connective tissue has developed.
Scars, seen or unseen, shape us.
The kintsugi technique intrigues me. This art form joins fragments of the broken piece, giving it a new, more refined aspect. Every repaired piece is unique because of the randomness with which ceramics shatters. The irregular patterns formed when broken are enhanced with the gold or silver lacquer.
Broken, but beautiful.
With this technique, it’s possible to create true and always different works of art. Each with its own story and beauty, thanks to the unique cracks formed when the object breaks. Just as our scars and wounds leave different marks on us.
When the Japanese mend broken objects, they aggrandize the damage by filling the cracks with gold. They believe that when something’s suffered damage and has a history, it becomes more beautiful.”~ Barbara Bloom
Why do we think we have to hide and disguise our imperfections?
Kintsugi sees the piece as more beautiful for having been broken.
The flaw is a unique piece of the object’s history, adding to its beauty. As a philosophy, this art form speaks to breakage and repair becoming part of the history of an object, rather than something to disguise.
Your brokenness is part of your history.
Brokenness makes you valuable.
When I reflect over my life, I can see I am kintsugi. My imperfections — flaws, cracks and brokenness – have shaped me into the woman I am today. I’m learning that when I allow Him, Christ’s power shines brightest in my struggles. In my pain. Through my scars.
But this beautiful treasure is contained in us—cracked pots made of earth and clay—so that the transcendent character of this power will be clearly seen as coming from God and not from us. We are cracked and chipped from our afflictions on all sides, but we are not crushed by them. We are bewildered at times, but we do not give in to despair. We are persecuted, but we have not been abandoned. We have been knocked down, but we are not destroyed. ~ 2 Corinthians 4:7-9
We are cracked pots of human frailty.
Yet in this whacked out state, when we turn to the Master Kintsugi artist, the grandeur and surpassing greatness of His power shines radiantly through our scars .
Gratitude for Scars
Someone I love dearly struggled with her identity and value. Cutting was her mode of coping with pain. Thankfully, she found her value and identity in Christ. Her history of brokenness left many scars on her arms and legs.
I prayed that God would heal some of my scars but also asked him to let me keep some. I never wanted to pretend like self harm was never a part of me. It’s part of my story, my testimony. My scars are a reminder of how broken I was but it also reminds me of how far I have come and how God healed me emotionally.
You may wonder how I can suggest that we offer gratitude for what broke us, leaving behind scars as reminders.
Kintsugi teaches us to look at our brokenness this way:
- You aren’t a throw-away because you are broken.
- Your breakages make you valuable.
- Resilience is birthed in traumatic events.
- Those negative experiences could not destroy you. Instead, you chose to learn from them.
Your brokenness has made you into the beautiful, unique and resilient person you are today.
Don’t be ashamed of scars, because they are unique to us and shape who we are, which makes us uniquely beautiful. Our scars tell our story and that is something that should not be hidden or covered. You should be genuine and real….chbrown
You are more beautiful for being broken.
We are all kintsugi.
What is your kintsugi story? I’d love to know it.