I was talking with a friend earlier today who shared a little bit about being judged for her past. A distant past. It’s a place I’ve been before. Maybe you have, too. It’s probably the least fun place to be. To know that God has forgiven you, restored you, blessed you and allowed you to not only leave your past behind, but use it as part of your life’s ministry…but that’s not good enough for some. It’s seemingly as if they’ve placed themselves in a place above God…or have they? Today, as I was praying for words to encourage my friend, God gave me words that encouraged me, too. And maybe they’ll encourage you. See these words really put a new perspective in my heart for those who live perched on a judgement seat. Here’s what I told her:
We can look at our past and see the beauty from ashes. They look at their present (or maybe a past, too) and still just see ashes.
Trust me friends, those words are not from me. Those are straight from my Father knowing that in encouraging my friend, He would also be teaching me a lesson in compassion. As I thought about those words, I remembered times when all I could see were the ashes of my life. The burnt remains of a past that I wanted nothing more but to leave behind. But with God and over time, beauty came from those ashes. Not by any doing of my own, but by HIS hand at work in my life. And the more I let Him work in my ashes, the more beauty He made. The more I let Him work in my ashes, the more my ashes became my story. The more I let Him transform my ashes, the more my story has the power to speak to someone else’s ashes. And maybe help them see beauty. If there’s anything I’ve learned in this life it’s that we all fall down. Maybe your past isn’t full of color…or maybe your’s is in full technicolor…either way, we all have ashes. But we don’t have to stay in ashes. God will bring beauty, amazing beauty, from your ashes. All you have to do is let Him.