Friday, April 23, 2010
I took this picture three days ago, but just uploaded it to look at it today. What a surprising insight it gives us into the process of blooming. Full bloom doesn't happen all at once, but each small burst of color is a major triumph.
I will heal their waywardness
and love them freely
for my anger has turned away from them.
I will be like the dew to Israel;
he will blossom like a lily.
Like a cedar of Lebanon
he will send down his roots;
his young shoots will grow.
His splendor will be like that of an olive tree,
his fragrance like a cedar of Lebanon.
Men will again dwell in his shade.
He will flourish like the grain.
He will blossom like a vine,
and his fame will be like the wine from Lebanon.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Life is messy. Sometimes it can really get you down. Sometimes you want to collar people and shake them until some sense gets into their heads. Other times, you want to just curl up in a ball in a dark place, a dark and warm place, and sleep forever.
But God makes beauty from ashes. God makes flowers bloom after winter. God, and only God, brings life from death. Jesus is our hope, our only hope, and in Him we need to abide.
"In that day the Lord Almighty will be a glorious crown, a beautiful wreath for the remnant of His people. He will be a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment, a source of strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate."
"The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because God 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 for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's 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 gladness instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting for the Lord for the display of His splendor."