Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Instead of Ashes
On our way back to Evergreen we drove for miles through burned forest. We would see the devastation of the beetle infestation in a few days around Vail and Dillon. I had to hope in new beginnings. I was reminded in the spirit of ashes for beauty, oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. When I looked up the scripture, I also saw these lines that seemed to give hope of redemption and new life.
They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.
They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated...
(references Isaiah 61)
The new growth of aspen and the green forest floor sprouting new seedlings was a picture of hope. God restores and regenerates us. Hearts submitted to him prepare us to be a planting of the Lord for the display of HIS splendor.
The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom, like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.
Isaiah 35:1-2, 10