I’ve traded my diaper bag for a proper handbag.
I’ve gone for a little drive, and haven’t needed to lug a carseat around.
I’m using wifi in a coffee shop, drinking a pumpkin spice latte and feeling foreign. But liking it. Loving it even.
Fall is definitely here, in all its glory. I love it. The leaves – the range of colours – magnificent. Just gorgeous. There is a fresh dumping of snow on the mountain at the edge of my valley. All around me is perfect inspiration for poets, artists and writers.
I was looking out of my kitchen window this morning, studying the range of leaf colours and the thought crossed my mind that the beauty of the colours, comes out in and through the act of dying. Through the length and breadth of the wondrous display, that is Autumn, God shows real beauty in ashes. Yes God gives beauty for ashes.
“To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.”—Isaiah 61:3.
Yes God gives beauty for ashes – but I also believe – like I see in the leaves – God gives beauty in ashes. In the whole process of dying, leaving, moving on…..
A friend of mine had awfully sad news this week, when her Mother passed away, very unexpectedly. There was no warning, no chance to say goodbye, nothing but a huge shock. Yet in all the sadness, all the heartache and all the emptiness that comes with death and the passing on of a loved one – still my friend has hope. Still my friend can hold onto sorrow that is somehow made sweet. Still my friend can quote Psalm 118:24 ‘This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it’. And she means it. How? Because of the wonderful exchange that God makes possible – beauty for ashes – and beauty in ashes.
There are no words or actions to make certain tragedies better. The process of grieving is a long and hard one – for Christians and for non-Christians, but YET, time and time again, I see God in the process. I see God in the ashes. And I’m so grateful.