It’s That Simple

Pens SmallMy five-year-old daughter leaned against my pillow, a rainbow of gel pens spread out on the bed around her. Her face was all concentration as she added vibrant life to the black and white outlines of a flower.

“Mom?”

“Yeah, babe?” I folded another dress and added it to the box that will store my clothes while we’re on furlough.

“God makes beautiful things.”

“Yes. He does.”

“Then Satan breaks things. But God makes them beautiful again.”

And there it was – the uncomplicated Gospel from the mouth of a child who hasn’t even been to kindergarten yet.

To be honest, life over the past year has been anything but uncomplicated. I’ve witnessed more brokenness during our short first term here than I could have imagined I would. I’ve seen how evil can lean in hard and heavy and push a deep hollow into tender souls.

Evil breaks beautiful things. It presses down and rips deep chasms in us and between us. It shatters innocence and bores into the bedrock of our faith, and we stand trembling, the taste of Eve’s fruit lingering on our tongues. We know and we see and we are bare.

Evil destroys. This is true.

But Grace… Grace is truer.

Grace runs like tears into the craters evil has torn. It finds every painful crevice and seeps through, softening the brittle edges and filling in the cracks. No space is too deep. Fragrant, vibrant Grace runs deeper, always deeper, all the way down, coloring in the outlines of our understanding of what the Gospel really is.

Yes, little one. It really is that simple.

God makes broken things beautiful again.

“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is upon me, because the LORD has appointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to announce that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the LORD’s favor has come, and with it, the day of God’s anger against their enemies. To all who mourn in Israel, he will give beauty for ashes, joy instead of mourning, praise instead of despair. For the LORD has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for his own glory.” ~Isaiah 61:1-3 (NLT)

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