He made beauty from ashes

I am living in a cold house this winter. Noticeably colder than where I have lived before, even discounting my recent tropical escapade to Samoa. One thing I have come to enjoy is the fire at nights. And, more than the warmth as I stoke it up before I go to bed, I love to see the glow of hot embers still there in the morning. It is so much easier to fan it again into flames if there are still hot embers.

Since my weekend with Helen Calder I have had the words of a song stuck in my mind. Oh-h-h the frustration when this happens with a song you don’t particularly like! But in my case, the words of this song are incredible.

He made beauty from ashes, turned sorrow into dancing,

Only You, Jesus son of God.

When I get up on a cold morning and see cold, dead, grey ashes in the fireplace, I know there will be a much greater effort needed to get the fire started, than when there is even just a small glowing ember. Those ashes don’t look very beautiful to me … from a visual perspective or a functional perspective.

But God can make beauty from ashes! Miraculously. He can make lives that are full of pain and remorse wiped clean and we can be forgiven in an instant. We only need to declare that we believe in Him and want to walk with Him. He says it in the Bible, and I believe it as He has outworked it in my life.

Even when I had only the faintest glimmer of hope that life could get better; even when I could only just distinguish a small glow in the furthest ember, God has helped me fan that hope into faith and showered me with blessings as a result. It doesn’t mean my life is now immune from hardship. But, then I don’t expect it to be. But, what it does mean is I have restored the reason for my hope and an assurance that I am loved and cared for at all times, no matter what my circumstances.

Helen Calder helped me to see the tower walls that needed to be broken down, and this little Rapunzel is ready to fire again! So watch this space … I don’t know where my now ‘uncovered’ enthusiasm will take me, but I know where it won’t take me. And that is probably the best thing of all!