Beauty for Ashes

If you follow my posts you will have noticed that recently I was caught in a mournful struggle. I hardly slept and I stumbled numbly through my day. I refrained from using mascara as my moist eyes were only inviting a black-streaked face.

It’s hard to deal with a living loss, hard to know what to do with it. I know God understands. There is “A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance.” (Eccles.3:4)

You can’t always stay weeping.

Many of you rallied about me sharing words of encouragement and joining me in prayer. The situation that drove me to sorrow has not changed however something did change. A miracle occurred.

Although not audible, God spoke to me. “I am the same God that created the world, who gave you life, who has faithfully cared for you throughout your lifetime. ‘Nothing is too hard for Me’(Jer. 32:27). What is out of your control is safely in My hands. ‘I have heard you crying and have said do not fear’ (Lam 3:57).

He who said “Let there be light” lit my very dark world and beams of sunshine came streaming in. In a flash, my tears dried up and my heart began to sing, it sang a song of praise. “Thank you, God, thank you for what you are doing. You care about this situation more than I could ever begin to care. I put it in your hands.”

Instead of blubbering and “worry praying” my heart was/is light and lifted. I promptly put on mascara and my smile returned to my face.

I sat down at my computer to check my messages. There a dear woman who shares my heart for ministry wrote these words:

“God showed me as I prayed yesterday for… [this situation and another] … to thank Him for all He is doing to move in their lives and bring them to Himself. Phil. 4:6 Thanking Him before the answer comes is not always easy but I will now be consistent in doing this. The Good Shepherd knows where His lambs are and how to reach each of them!

Praying for your heart! ….This may be a book one day, giving great glory to our King!!” My heart soared, it was a confirmation hug from Heaven that God knew I needed at that exact time.

Thank you, Father, thank you for what You have done, what You are doing, and what You will do! “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted… To comfort all who mourn… to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness… that he might be glorified.” Isaiah 61:1-3

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6 thoughts on “Beauty For Ashes”

  1. Hi Shawna!
    You have such a beautiful ministry, God is healing a lot of people because of your beautiful art work and all the kind words and scripture!! I want to thank you and I ask God to richly bless you. Love Annette.

  2. Shawna,
    How your words and art resonate with so many of us mothers, God has certainly raised you up for such a time as this, to encourage your generation to press in to the Father who loves our children more than we do.
    We must stand our ground in faith and let Him fight for us. We must praise Him in the storm and believe He is working.
    As mothers we just want to fix it for our child, to stop their pain. It is the hardest thing to not be able to because they don’t want our help. We feel helpless, but we are not. We can pray, we can wield the Sword of the Spirit, and angels hearken to the voice of the spoken Word.
    May the Lord use your art to draw hurting people to Him, to God be the glory!
    Donna T.

  3. Dear Shawna
    Its so blessed that we can encourage each other with Words of Life and Hope.
    It is during these times of deep sorrow that we experience the sweet presence of the Lord.
    I have lost two daughters on two different occasions in motor car accidents. My youngest was 17 and my eldest was 34.
    I dont deny that it is during my times of struggle that I grow in the love of the Lord and really deeply appreciate
    what He did for me.
    Now in this time of the war in Israel, spending much time in prayer for His beloved land. I’m feeling His heart.

    1. Thank you for the kind encouragement. With the ministry that God has given me daily I hear heart wrenching stories of tragedy and loss. I also see a bigger picture how God pushes in close, comforts and provide peace. It is the time of hardship and trials that many find Jesus. Hugs friend <3

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