I have a pair of earrings that I wear when I’m having a bad day. They happen to be pretty and go with lots of my clothing, but that’s beside the point.
I wear them because they remind me that no matter how crummy things are, God will use it all for his glory. He’ll exchange beauty for ashes.
The earrings remind me of a disaster that took place in my home state when I was a baby. When I was almost a year old, Mount Saint Helens erupted in Washington. As a young child, I travelled to the mountain to witness the devastation, trees stripped bare and blackened, scorched earth for miles, ash covering everything and creating a barren wasteland that looked like the surface of the moon.
I can still remember it vividly.
But even in such a desolate place, life was returning. Trees were beginning to grow there. Specks of green were popping up all over the place.
And my earrings were forged from this same ash. Some enterprising individual found a way to transform the abundant ash into something beautiful, a greenish blue stone that made lovely jewelry (It looks like someone else is making it these days, in an emerald hue.)
The earrings remind me that God can make beautiful things out of dust. Gungor’s haunting song also highlights this truth.
So when I’m going through something tough, I wear the earrings to remind me that Jesus is redeeming all of it. It’s not for nothing. The pain has a purpose. It will be beautiful. He’s making it beautiful. He’s making me beautiful.