There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 NIV
The Bible reminds us that we have a time for everything in our lives. I am quite sure, that when we go through periods of loss, we may not realize there is also great beauty. We focus on the loss and the sorrow, or on the pain. We struggle, at times, because we cannot see the beauty in the midst of the loss or trial we are in. This is hard to do as a human being going through the season. Yet, with God's help, we can take His perspective and see the beauty in our ashes. Rather than keeping our eyes on the pain, sifting through the ashes of what we have lost, we need to draw closer to our Redeemer and find the joy, the peace, and the beauty even in the loss.
I can tell you losing a loved one is a deep pain that is so hard to get through. It is a pain that seems to never go away and may rile up suddenly at the slightest reminder in a smell, an action, or an upcoming holiday. But even in this loss, we can still find beauty. I can tell you, with all honesty, I still miss my mother and may still cry when I think of her at times, but I also find great comfort and even beauty as I can share memories of her with my children, as I catch myself doing something she did, or even talk about how she died. Yes, even in her tragic death, there was still peace, blessing and hope. It was hard and difficult, and sometimes it still is, but I have beauty there.
I don't know why this is my topic today, but I feel deeply that God wants us to know that even in loss, there is still beauty. He is always there and brings us through the struggles this life holds for us. Yesterday, I watched as my husband held our little boy and spoke comfort to his troubled heart as he struggled with fear after a being in a car accident. I watched a loving father bring peace to a scared child. I felt God speaking peace to my own heart and sensed His loving arms holding them both. I saw a glimpse of what our heavenly Father does for us. He is there with loving arms to hold us, carry us and wrap us up as He whispers His word to our troubled souls. How comforting it is to know my Heavenly Father is always present in my struggles.
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim 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 ʼs favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, 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 61:1-3 NIV
I am thankful today as I know seasons come and seasons go. I am thankful to know that God gives us joy instead of mourning, beauty instead of ashes, and praise for our despair. He is our Comforter and our Freedom. Most of all, He is our loving Father who brings us through each season.
This song, Joy, has been running through my head and my heart all week. It is a reminder of the beauty in the midst of loss and a reminder that God's Word is true and faithful.
There's beauty in my brokenness, I've got true love instead of pain, There's freedom though You've captured me. I've got joy instead of mourning.
You give me joy, down deep in my soul. down deep in my soul, down deep in my soul.
Rest in His arms, find the beauty, and feel His joy and peace. He will bring you through the season and into a time of rest that is waiting. Growth comes as we rest in Him.