“There's a garden in the ashes / There is beauty in the mess / If we embrace our imperfections / I know love will do the rest.” - Steffany Gretzinger, Sing My Way Back
There is a garden in the ashes …
I have heard it said that in the ashes of all that’s been burned down in our lives lies the nutrients needed to grow a garden. Is it true, Lord, that you never waste a single bit of my pain or disappointment? I’m thankful you repurpose every bit of debris for my good and for your ultimate glory, God.
Thank you that you don’t leave me in a pile of pain to fend for myself. Thank you that you take everything that has hurt me, and through repentance, everything that I have done to hurt others, and use it to reshape and remold me. Creating a garden in the ashes. One I couldn't have seen coming.
Remind me when I am devastated about what I can no longer see that you see hope in our wastelands, just like the dry bones that Elijah saw coming together in the valley piece by piece.
The Message version of Isaiah 58:12 says,
“If you get rid of unfair practices,
quit blaming victims,
quit gossiping about other people’s sins,
If you are generous with the hungry
and start giving yourselves to the down-and-out,
Your lives will begin to glow in the darkness,
your shadowed lives will be bathed in sunlight.
I will always show you where to go.
I’ll give you a full life in the emptiest of places—
firm muscles, strong bones.
You’ll be like a well-watered garden,
a gurgling spring that never runs dry.
You’ll use the old rubble of past lives to build anew,
rebuild the foundations from out of your past.
You’ll be known as those who can fix anything,
restore old ruins, rebuild and renovate,
make the community livable again.
Let it be so with me, Lord.