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Friday, April 16, 2010

Beauty for Ashes

Today is the day I celebrate each year as my spiritual birthday. Twenty-three years ago, I made the most important decision of my entire life, as I asked Christ to enter my heart and transform my soul. At six years old, I didn't understand how this decision would equip me to handle the failures, surprises, and train wrecks that a fallen world inevitably creates.

A dear friend of mine lost a baby around this time last year, and is persevering through her grief. I received an email from her recently, and I was moved by her words: "This is an extremely difficult time of year for us, but I don't think that anyone can be more grateful for Easter than a mother who has lost her child." Incredibly wise words from a woman who knows the resurrection of Christ yields beauty for ashes.

I am experiencing some deep hurt today, and this hurt isn't likely to fade for awhile. But I know I am not walking in this hurt alone, and my Savior is at war against the source of the pain and ugliness on earth. We win, by the way.

If you read this, and you are hurting too, know that you are loved. Christ died for you, then conquered death for you, and you don't have to resign yourself to hopelessness and despair. There is a perfect purpose for you, a peace that passes all understanding. All you have to do is receive.

"...and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness 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


Blogger Mrs. C said...

This is beautiful, Mary Anna. I wish your friend the utmost peace. I delivered a baby girl in Mali over 2 years ago, and she died three weeks later. While this is commonplace for a third world country, losing her devastated me, and has changed my life in so many ways. During the initial time of grief, I looked to the Lord to ease all of our pain. I was lifted to a spiritual place I'd never been, an utter peace and wisdom of the joy and love of the Lord. I am glad you share that as well.

9:09 AM


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