I loved singing At the foot of the cross on Sunday. These words in particular:
Now I can trade These Ashes In For Beauty
and Wear Forgiveness Like A Crown
coming To Kiss The Feet Of Mercy
I Lay Every Burden Down
at The Foot Of The Cross
This song is from Isaiah 61:3
to provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes…
As I go through my week, I hear so many stories of longing– will God heal me? Can God set me free from this addiction? Can God restore this relationship? Can God provide for this ache in my heart?
We walk around knee deep in ashes. Yes, the image is of mourning. But knee deep in reminders of our brokenness, of stuff that didn’t work out, of pain caused by us, and pain done to us.
If you pick up ash, it sifts through your fingers. It’s really hard to hold– much less ‘to exchange’. It has little remunerative value.
So I am deeply moved by grace, by a picture of holding as much ash as I can, maybe in my scooped up shirt or a rag or a wheelbarrow and walking up to Jesus… I know it’s just ash…
And he takes it. And he hands me beauty. Stunning. Priceless. Unique. One of a kind. Beauty that I could never afford, but can hold my gaze for a lifetime and beyond.
I lay every burden down.