Monday, August 10, 2009

Beauty for Ashes-Lyrics

Beauty for Ashes
by Crystal Lewis

He gives Beauty for ashes, Strength for fear, Gladness for mourning, Peace for despair.

When sorrow seems to surround you, When suffering hangs, hangs heavy o'er your head
Know that tomorrow brings wholeness and healing
God knows your need, just believe what He said.

He gives Beauty for ashes, Strength for fear, Gladness for mourning, Peace for despair.

When what you've done keeps you from moving on, When fear wants to make itself at home in your heart, Know that forgiveness brings wholeness and healing
God knows your need just believe what He said.

He gives Beauty for ashes, Strength for fear, Gladness for mourning, Peace for despair.

I once was lost but God has found me, Though I was bound I've been set free. I've been made righteous in His sight, A display of His splendor all can see.

Beauty for Ashes

One day, as Mya and I were getting ready to leave for church, we were at the door and I said, "Oh, I need to get my Bible." So, I went to the bedroom and got it, and returned to the door to leave when I realized that she went to her room as well. She came back with her Bible, from the night stand, next to the rocking chair where we read to her every night. She said, "Here ya go." This was so sweet that I stacked it with mine, and off we went. Most every night she demands at least three books, one about bed time, one with Thomas the Train or Elmo, and always her Bible. She genuinely loves to hold the Bible herself and flip through the pages like she is reading it herself. So stinkin cute, it does my heart good.

Tonight, I could not find her usual Bible, so I resorted to the "very special Bible" which is the tiny one with her name engraved on it that she received at her baby dedication. This lead to a moment where she actually sat still long enough for me to tell her about Jesus, a special friend. In our house, we pray a lot and talk about church and Jesus, sure. But this was a divine chance that every parent is honored to have. What a responsibility and privilege to tell our children about Christ. I began to tell Mya that Jesus loves her. Jesus loves Mommy. Jesus loves Daddy. Jesus loves (insert many names of family members and friends that we know). To which she replied, "Jesus loves Mya" while she held her little hand to her chest. And a resounding YES poured over my heart and lips.

I could not help myself. I was then overwhelmed to talk about her brother, Coen. I'm certain that he gave Mya the low-down on Mommy and Daddy before she came to meet us on earth. I said, "Do you know your brother Coen? He was a strong, beautiful boy. Mommy and Daddy held him as a baby, and now he lives with Jesus in heaven. " And this is the kicker...she said, "My Coen" again, with her little hand to her chest.

Now, this could be apart of the Mine-osaur phase that she has been in lately, especially considering she is weeks away from turning 2. But, it is my hope that we will continue to speak of his amazing life. I am convinced that the word I was given, several months after Coen's death, has become true. God was faithful to bring beauty for ashes. This is literal to me. We had Coen cremated and we chose to spread his ashes during a private retreat, just Josh and I. Mya is a beautiful girl, and was a beautiful baby. Sure I'm bias. However, I know she carries the countenance of the Lord, which was seen even from her first days in the NICU as she received her blood transfusions. I get lost easily in her face, her eyes. She represents so much restoration and joy to us.

I also know her beauty is in her spirit, personality, and her heart. Clearly, God has instilled in her a special gift. This is the beauty that God sees in us. Each of us holds it, it's in the mirror. It's called His image. We were exactly what he had in mind. For most of us, we are exactly where He wants us. I will say it forever, He is faithful. He can and He will.

He brings Beauty for ashes,
Strength for fear,
Gladness for mourning,
Peace for despair.

He does, He does, He does.... He does.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

August 4, 2004

One of the most incredible days of my life. Just over 5 years ago, we first met our son. Coen James Walsh was stillborn at 39 weeks, just days before he was due. He died because of anemia, in which my body was not reproducing red blood cells for him during pregnancy. There was no way of knowing, and the news was sudden. Shocking. Speechless. Suffering.

Josh and I were privileged to get to meet him. We held him, without much to say. Our tears flooded our vision as we did our best to see his face, touch his hands, and hold his little body. The memory of holding a child for the first time is one you can never forget. The memory of holding a child for the last time is one you try to always remember.

His tiny life has a story of its own. The impact he left on our hearts was undoubtable. Very soon, I want to share more. More of this precious life that I had the honor of knowing, loving, and releasing. Lord, would you please take delight and gather the glory as I seek to walk back through this experience. You are the author and perfecter of my faith, and the center of my story.