To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness
In yesterday’s post, I wrote about God’s gradual work of perfecting us into His beautiful image, a process which will not be completely finished until we reach heaven. In my photos from Progression to Beauty, I illustrated this sanctification process by showing the gradual opening of a Magnolia flower to its marvelous beauty. What I intentionally withheld was a picture of what happens to that same flower a few days later.
As God is working this sanctification in us, Satan is right along side trying to destroy anything beautiful in our lives. His mission is one of opposition to God; hence, he is always on the lookout for anything good that he can attempt to ruin. He cleverly deceives many into thinking that their is no hope of recovering any beauty amid the ruined circumstances life often brings. Creation itself groans under the curse of sin’s ruin.
Some of you may feel that way. You may think that because of past sins, or failed attempts to serve God that your life is beyond repair. Convinced that you have gone too far, you think that your life can never again be restored to beauty.
Yet, amid the very ruin itself are the seeds of new life.
God knew in advance that Satan would attempt to thwart His creation. As a result, He provided the way back to beauty by sending Jesus to die in place of our sin. You might ask, though, how is the cross a thing of beauty?
When Christ died on the cross, the enemy thought that he had won, but buried inside the tomb was the Seed of resurrection, simply awaiting His designated time to come forth. With victorious glory, Jesus arose, giving hope to all that God’s intended beauty can indeed be restored. Nobody has strayed too far that His love cannot reach. No attempts by Satan can destroy God’s promised work of beauty in our lives. God can bring back to life to any ruined one. It is our choice whether or not we will accept what He has already done on our behalf to restore that beautiful new life.
Are you tempted, like I sometimes am, to lose hope that God will restore to beauty someone or something that seems ruined beyond repair?
Let us together remember that God can and will bring forth beauty from ashes. He is in the beauty business!
For other similar posts, see From His Heart