"The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord anointed me to bring good news to the poor, he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound, to proclaim the year of the Lords favor and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to grant to those who mourn in Zion - to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit." Isaiah 60:1-3a
I AM GIVEN A CROWN OF BEAUTY FOR ASHES. I GIVEN A GALAND OF FLOWERS - A GARLAND OF BEAUTY FOR ASHES.
The journey through the fragmented pieces of struggle lays the ashes - the darkness that looms, the depression that hits like a wave in the depths of the waters. The wind that recklessly blows the birds of the air. The loneliness in the valleys.Fragments scattered filling what seems like never ending darkness. Blinding darkness.
Sit there. Sit there in the grief and heartache. Amongst the fragments, amongst the ashes. Sit there with your tears that endlessly stream down your face when no one is watching. The tears that come in the closet late at night, the tears that stream in the loneliness of a drive to the store, the tears that flood when emotions are cannot be contained. The tears that people see and do not respond to. Sit + weep, and allow Jesus to capture every tear, every hurt, every heartache.
“You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.”
It was customary to wear a sackcloth sit in the ashes in times of your hurt/grief or repentance - the ashes beneath your body and surrounding you. Ashes that represent grief and struggle, heartache and loneliness - the ashes that are the beginning of healing and restoration. Through the ashes, God is giving you beauty. Sometimes the beauty is hidden. Hidden behind your shattered soul, your crumbling mental health, your hurting heart.
For God is giving you beauty for those ashes; more specifically he is giving you a headdress of beauty - a garland of flowers - for your shattered soul, crumbled mental health, hurting hearts. Hiding behind the heartache is the beauty that God promises.
Amongst the hurt, God is giving you beauty.
Amongst the pain, God is giving you beauty.
Amongst the struggle, God is giving you beauty.
Amongst the heartache, God is giving you beauty.
Amongst the stress, God is giving you beauty.
Let the ashes be a reminder that our brokenness can bring about renewal. That beauty is waiting to be seen whiles sitting in the ashes. That God can create beauty in the darkest moments.