Today's guest blog is from Tami Yeager, EPM's bookkeeper. Because of her passion for the persecuted church, she also serves as a community voice coordinator for Voice of the Martyrs. Tami and her husband Jeff have five children and seven grandchildren.
...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 (Isaiah 61:3).
Where we live we are able to burn our yard debris during certain times of the year. Each fall we clean up dead and dying plants and toss them into the burn pile, having deemed each plant as having served its purpose and its season having come to an end. When we do burn the pile, the fire burns extremely hot, and because of its size and intensity, it will often smolder for days. When it does eventually burn out, what remains is a large pile of ash.
This last spring a beautiful squash plant rose from the burn pile. Not a single person in our family planted it or tended it once it sprouted from the ashes. Yet this plant is the healthiest plant on the property. The seed survived the heat of the fire last fall and the freeze of winter, and the plant weathered the 80-degree, sun-filled days of this past summer. Not only did it survive all of those extreme elements, but it has also bore an abundance of fruit—there are over nine squash growing on this healthy plant!
The beauty of the abundant life rising from the ash pile has captivated me. I have found my thoughts consumed with what God is saying through this plant that came to life from the ashes. It comforts me to know that God can bring beauty from ashes, and also reminds me that there is great potential for seeds buried in the soil of disappointment, sorrow, and despair.
Never underestimate the potential of a seed buried deep within the ashes. The fire that seemed to be relentless was in reality creating the perfect soil for new life.