I held in my tightly clenched fist...ashes.
from a burn inflicted upon my childhood body.
were ashes I did not ask for.
scar was forced on me.
for 17 years the fire smoldered.
kept my fist closed in secret, hating those ashes, yet unwilling to release
them. I wasn't even sure if I could. I was not convinced it
was worth it.
caused me to mar the things I touched and leave black marks everywhere---or
so it seemed.
tried to undo it all, but the marks were always there to prove to me I
couldn't. I really couldn't.
sweetly the Holy Spirit spoke to me in my tearful despair.
whispered, "I want to give you beauty for your ashes,
oil of joy for your mourning
the garment of praise for your spirit of heaviness."
had never heard of or imagined a trade such as this!
sadly stained memory for the healing in His Word?
soot-like dreams for His songs in the night?
helpless and hurting emotions for His ever constant peace??
How could I be so stubborn as to refuse an offer such as this?
willingly, yet in slow motion and yes, while sobbing,
opened my bent fingers and let the ashes drop to the ground.
silence, I heard the wind blow them away.
am now able to place my open hands gently around the fist of another hurting
soul and say with confidence,
them go. There really is beauty beyond your comprehension.
ahead - trust Him.
beauty for your ashes."