I have been feeling somewhat apathetic about the things that Mr. Joe and I have been passionate about for many years! I have still been thinking about the future but the things that I used to want are drifting away from my desires. New desires are coming forward and this honestly makes me a little uneasy.
I was in worship yesterday and I started praying about passion. I started asking God about my own passion and I asked Him to give me back passion for something even if it was something different.
As I was praying, I started thinking about the things that I had been passionate about in the past and all that I could see in my spirit were ashes all around me. The dreams that I have had in my life for myself and other people were a part of these heaps of ashes all around me. I looked up to heaven and asked God, “Why do all of the things that I have been passionate about end up becoming ashes?”
One of my daughters lost her home and most of her belongings in a fire several years ago and I remember driving out to look at the damage. When I first saw the ashes, all I could think of was the devastation of it all. I wondered how in the world she and her baby daughter could replace everything that had been lost. Everything that she possessed except what was in her car and at the babysitter’s had quickly become ashes while she was at work.
Seeing every dream and passion that we have possessed burned up and all that is left is a heap of ashes can be pretty devastating, too.
Back to what God was showing me while I prayed, I was surveying all of the ashes that were around me. The ashes that were the dreams and people that I had invested my passions in. I looked down and God reminded me that I had once been ashes by showing my feet to me. My feet were still in the ashes. He reminded me in a flash about who I once was and who I am now because of the fires that, at one time, had made me into a big pile of ashes.
I could see who I am now, standing in the midst of those ashes as if I had grown out of them and He reminded me of the scripture that I have held very near and dear to my heart. The scripture that promised me that I would not be ashes but beautiful one day.
and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.
They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations.
He has made something beautiful in me from those ashes and now it should be no surprise to me that all of the dreams and people that I have been praying for have been reduced to ashes. It is only from the ashes that He does amazing things.
Those of us who have been students of the Bible for a long time know that God talks a lot about fire in the Bible. We also know that the Earth (as we know it) will never be destroyed by water again but will be destroyed by fire when God deems that it is time.
After the fire that destroys the earth, we will see the promised “New heaven and earth” and my guess is that it will emerge out of the ashes of the old one.
Is it time for me to set all of the dreams and people who I have been passionate about aside?
Do I want to be safe? …or…
Do I want to take chances?
Is it time for me to retire and rest for the rest of my life?
Or should I just go til I wear this old body out?
Is the eternity that I have been promised enough time for me to rest?
I know that the dreams and passions that I once held dear to my heart are still there, I have just not been allowing myself to feel them, lately.
I believe that eternity is enough time…
And so, I will again take up my cross and follow the one who has given me “Beauty for Ashes”.
Love and blessings to you!