Monday, October 4, 2010

Amalgamate: Beauty for Ashes

A post of mine from my previous blog, It's Miller Time. Beauty in the eyes of the Holy.

"Last night was a much needed thing...I'd love to share some of it with you. A friend and her mother organized a day for all of the women close to them to come together to proclaim August 7 as a 'Day of Beauty.'

Below is a passage of Scripture that was read that sort of encompasses a large part of our night. We took this passage and tried to personalize it. It was a night of redemption, beauty and celebration.

Isaiah 61-62: "The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, because the Lord has appointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to announce that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the Lord's favor has come, and with it, the day of God's anger against their enemies. To all who mourn in Israel, he will give beauty for ashes, joy instead of mourning, praise instead of despair. For the Lord has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for his own glory.
"They will rebuild the ancient ruins, repairing cities long ago destroyed. They will revive them, though they have been empty for many generations. Foreigners will be your servants. They will feed your flocks and plow your fields and tend your vineyards. You will be called priests of the Lord, minsters of our God. You will be fed with the treasures of the nations and will boast in their riches. Instead of shame and dishonor, you will inherit a double portion of prosperity and everlasting joy.
"For I, the Lord, love justice. I hate robbery and wrongdoing. I will faithfully reward my people for their suffering and make an everlasting covenant with them. Their descendants will be known and honored among the nations. Everyone will realize that they are a people the Lord has blessed.
"I am overwhelmed with joy in the Lord my God! For he has dressed me with the clothing of salvation and draped me in a robe of righteousness. I am like a bridegroom in his wedding suit or a bride with her jewels. The Sovereign Lord will show his justice to the nations of the world. Everyone will praise him! His righteousness will be like a garden in early spring, filled with young plants springing up everywhere.
"Because I love Zion, because my heart yearns for Jerusalem, I cannot remain silent. I will not stop praying for her until her righteousness shines like the dawn, and her salvation blazes like a burning torch.

"The nations will see your righteousness. Kings will be blinded by your glory. And the Lord will give you a new name. The Lord will hold you in his hands for all to see--a splendid crown in the hands of God. Never again will you be called the Godforsaken City or the Desolate Land. Your new name will be the City of God's Delight and the Bride of God, for the Lord delights in you and will claim you as his own. Your children will care for you with joy, O Jerusalem, just as a young man cares for his bride. Then God will rejoice over you as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride.

"O Jerusalem, I have posted watchmen on your walls; they will pray to the Lord day and night for the fulfillment of his promises. Take no rest, all you who pray. Give the Lord no rest until he makes Jerusalem the object of praise throughout the earth. The Lord has sworn to Jerusalem by his own strength: 'I will never again hand you over to your enemies. Never again will foreign warriors come and take away your grain and wine. You raised it, and you will keep it, praising the Lord. Within the courtyards of the Temple, you yourselves will drink the wine that you have pressed.'

"Go out! Prepare the highway for my people to return! Smooth out the road; pull out the boulders; raise a flag for all the nations to see. The Lord has sent this message to every land: 'Tell the people of Israel, Look, your Savior is coming. See, he brings his reward with him as he comes.' They will be called the Holy People and the People Redeemed by the Lord. And Jerusalem will be known as the Desirable Place and the City No Longer Forsaken."

Jude 1: 24-25: [24] To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy -- [25] to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen."

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