Monday, September 1, 2014

Beauty for Ashes

It is a phrase I have heard often over my life, but I have been heavily impressed with God's ability to bring beauty out of ashes this week.  Sin, disappointment, divorce, sickness, brokenness, disillusionment, infertility, violence, etc, have been everywhere around me this week.  Here is what Scripture says about it in a prophecy about Jesus:

Isaiah 61:1-3"The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.  He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion--to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.  They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor." (NIV)

Jesus came to provide a way for us to be with Him.  Our sin blocks us from being able to know Him, but Jesus paid for our sin.  So in this passage, as it talks about the devastating situation that we are in--brokenhearted, captives, in darkness, prisoners, mourning, despair--He brings beauty, joy, and praise. 

So as I have been watching people fall prey to the consequences of their sin and the sin of the people around them, I am reminded that in spite of our self-centered sinfulness, God can still bring beauty from it.  

Have hope in Him today.