Beauty for Ashes, Part 3: Praise for Despair
1 The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, 2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, 3 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.
-As opposed to mourning, which is event-driven, the “spirit of despair” tends to “move in” and stay with a person in the form of fear, anxiety, chronic sadness.
“garment of praise”
-Our God wants to give you praise even in your despair.
1 I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. 2 He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. 3 He put a new song in my mouth ,a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.
1 Praise the Lord, my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. 2 Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— 3 who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, 4 who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, 5 who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
11 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.
164 Seven times a day I praise you for your righteous laws.
When we praise God, there is renewal happening:
-renewal of our time: what if praise was so important that we plan our day around it?
Experience a real life story of God’s renewal in Shannon’s life, even in the midst of despair.