Beauty For Ashes


An ancient saying from an unknown author reminds us of the power of an aching heart: “The soul would have no rainbow had the eyes no tears.”

Unfortunately, all of us at some point has had, and will have an aching heart. Nothing is more familiar than a painful memory that has never really healed and has not been forgotten. The knowledge of repeated failure, of mistakes, of broken promises, of abuses, of put downs – – all are a heavy load of hurt, shame and sorrow. Yet, our hurt is not to be given permanent stature. God promises freedom, comfort, newness, restoration and growth for us, if we turn to Him.

Saint Theresa had a comforting bookmark with this inscription to help heal her griefs:
Let nothing disturb thee.
Let nothing dismay thee.
All things pass.
God never changes.
Patience attains  all that it strives for.
He who has God finds he lacks nothing.
God alone suffices.

God alone suffices! The Bible tells us “ God bestows on us a crown of beauty instead of ashes” (Isaiah 61:3) He is the anchor that always holds. The solid foundation that never weakens. The companion who never leaves us. My friend, never let your aching heart drive you away from God, but rather, let it bring you closer to the One who knows you intimately, who understands you completely, and who loves you unconditionally.

Sometimes we find it hard to fathom God bringing sanity and serenity back into our lives. Please understand that God holds the reins of the entire universe. All of nature – its beauty, its bounty and its fury – submits to God’s purposes. We are but a tiny part of the cosmos, and yet God values us more than all of His creation. He truly can transform our lives – yes, even our mistakes and brokenness.

Our Lord, Jesus, knows the agony of the broken heart. He knows our pain, and when we hold His hand, He understands and holds us safe and heals our hurt. His hand is always within reach. All we have to do is grasp it and he promises, he will never let go of you. Do it today and be restored!

“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach 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, to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor . . . to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve . . . 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.” (Isaiah 61: 1-3 NIV)

Dear Christ, I know your open hand is always stretched out to me . Help me to grasp your open hand. I receive your grace, your renewal and your healing. Thank you, Lord, for setting me free from bondage by your powerful love. In Jesus name, I pray, Amen!


God’s grace to you,

Mike Kofi Prah

UPLIFT Blog by Mike Prah is a Christ-centered perspective to encourage your Christian walk. Inspired by this article? Post a comment to encourage someone.

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