Thursday, January 12, 2012

Beauty for Ashes

I love this:

“Of one thing I am perfectly sure: God's story never ends with 'ashes.” 
 Elisabeth Elliot, These Strange Ashes

Isaiah 61:1-3

1 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, 2 to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor 
   and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, 
 3 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.

...I love that last phrase....for the display of HIS splendor. I wonder if I have displayed His splendor this week? That's the reason he has called us display His splendor. We do this by proclaiming good news, binding up the brokenhearted, freeing captives, shedding light, proclaiming the Lord's favor and day of vengeance, comforting those who mourn, provide for the grieving, trading beauty for ashes, joy for mourning, and praise for despair. All display HIS splendor......and to remember....He doesn't ever end with the ashes. How beautiful is that!?!