Friday, June 19, 2009

Beauty for ashes.

So, today is my birthday! 38 years. Oprah said once lie about your weight but not your age. I love turning a year older. I might reconsider when i hit 40's though. we will see. A few years ago God gave me a promise: Isa 61: to give them an ornament (a garland or diadem) of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, the garment [expressive] of praise instead of a heavy, burdened, and failing spirit--that they may be called oaks of righteousness [lofty, strong, and magnificent, distinguished for uprightness, justice, and right standing with God], the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.

When I say God gave it to me, i mean while I was reading this passage, something stirred in my heart and I just knew it was for me. Subconsciously i have been waiting for this promise to happen. And then this morning while I was brushing my teeth, came this sudden overwhelming knowledge that I am seeing this promise fulfilled in my life right now. And I realized it started just a few months after God gave it to me. The good news is that it's for each and every one of us, ABSOLUTELY not just for me. As a birthday gift i want to give this promise to you today.
The fulfillment of it came in the wonderful, awesome and amazing knowledge that we are made RIGHT with God. That we are innocent and in favor with God. Not by our own actions and how morally good we behave but because of what Christ did on the cross.

The best way to describe it is with this example that I got from something that Francois du Toit wrote in an introduction to the book of Romans (if you have time, please read the whole piece):

The free eagle
While we were on honeymoon at Blydepoort, Mpumalanga (in January 1979), Lydia and I met an official from Nature Conservation who told us of a fascinating incident; she witnessed the dramatic release of a Black Eagle a few weeks prior to our visit. This eagle had been captive in the Pretoria zoo for ten years. She told us how thrilled they were with excitement and anticipation when the eagle finally arrived in its cage and the gate was opened. But only with difficulty did they eventually succeed to nudge the bird out of its cage.

It was one thing to get the bird out of the cage, but how do you get the cage out of the bird? In the mind of this eagle, it was still in the Pretoria zoo. Every one was holding their breath, but this once mighty bird remained the pathetic prisoner of an inferior mindset.

Nothing changed until much later when another eagle began to call in the area. The eyes of the zoo-eagle immediately lit up, and the next moment she took off in majestic flight to soar in unrestricted space. It needed no further flying instructions!

This dramatic story left a deep impression on my mind. I knew that in the light of Paul’s revelation of the good news, we are left with one urgent priority, which is to announce to the nations with bold confidence the truth about their original identity and mirror reflect the integrity of their innocence.

I will say that this eagle got beauty for ashes. And so can we all.

Heb 2: 2:11 Because both He who performed the rescuing act and those rescued and restored to innocence, originate from the same womb, He proudly introduces them to be identified as His immediate family.”

THIS is such good news.
love and a kiss


Anonymous said...

Beautiful Wilma - thanks for sharing what God has for us all. Happy Birthday!

mandiegirl said...

Happy, happy birthday! Love you!

Stefanie said...

Happy birthday...may you be richly blessed as you celebrate your birthday.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry - I misspelled your name - Wilna - happy birthday and thanks for your post!

Stay Funny said...

Have a happy B-day Wilna!
All my best wishes!!!! Enjoy your w-end!

Sheri (Aunt Re Re) said...

Wow Wilna! Couldn't have been said any better! How inspiring!

Roxanne said...

What a beautiful story. I need to go and read the entire excerpt now!! AND a fantastic gift...I'm sure you will soar this year and continue to inspire the rest of us to be true and do the same.
Enjoy your weekend!

caro said...

Happy Happy Birthdays!!! Yay for refreshing & renewing, angels, eagles and friends who bless us. Thank you for always sharing so beautifully, Wilna.

hayley said...

Happy Birthday Wilna! You were on honeymoon in 1979??