Beauty for Ashes

A woman sits on a park bench crying. Not sobbing, but softly allowing tears to stream down her face. Some passersby take notice. A young couple pushing their baby in a stroller glance. Unsure about approaching the woman, they awkwardly hurry by. An older woman stops and sweetly tells the woman she’s too pretty to be crying and that she’ll ruin her makeup. Finally, an elderly man takes a seat on the bench with the woman. Such a gentleman, he offers his handkerchief and asks why she’s crying? What makes her so sad?

The woman turns and looks at him with sincere eyes, stating her tears aren’t from being sad or angry. She explained that as she sat on the bench, basking in the sunshine, enjoying the cool spring day, she began to reflect on how much her life has changed for the better; the challenges she’s overcome, the experience of feeling truly loved and the willingness to show compassion and love towards others. The woman went on to say that her life changed when she obtained a deeper understanding of who she is – a child of God, a daughter of Christ her King. The challenges and setbacks she faced in life equipped her to walk out her purpose and be of service to others.

She assured the man there was no need to feel sorry for her because she was finding fulfillment and peace unlike she’s ever known. Who cares about a perfectly made up face when you’re sitting awestruck before a perfect God.

     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. –  Isaiah 61:3 (New International Version)

 

 

 

Beauty All Around

                 If I have nothing, I have you

                   If I question who I am, I am yours

                   When the future is cloudy, I can rest on your promise to give me a hope and a future

                   When I am lonely, I take comfort in the fact that you’re always there

                   In weakness, I rely on your strength

                  When I look back over my life and remember all that you’ve done – the love, grace

                  and mercy you have shown—I rejoice and see the beauty all around me

                  I see the beauty in you

The Vitality of Heaven

The perfect vitality of heaven came to earth on a mission of love, acquainting Himself with human imperfection and frailty. He already loved us, already knew us, but walked in our shoes, carried our shame and conquered the grave. There’s no burden or heartache too hard for Him. Mighty to save, full of compassion and grace, His desire is to draw us close in full embrace.

The Quiet

Some people are afraid of quiet, craving constant chatter and noise, busyness. There’s a difference between silence and quiet for me.

The quiet is stillness. It brings me back to the audience of One; giving thanks, shedding tears and unburdening my soul. Quiet allows me to slow the frenetic pace and rest in a place of calm. The quiet clears my mind and helps me find new perspective. Refreshed, I can get back into the game with renewed strength and focus.