To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes,
The oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified (Isaiah 61:3).
In Biblical times and in some cultures today, people put ashes on their heads as a sign of sorrow or despair. It is a physical sign of the pain they feel in their hearts. God doesn’t want you and I marked by ashes of despair and sadness. Instead of living with a continued expression of unbroken grief, God wants us to be His people of unstoppable joy. God wants to enter into the curse-marked parts of our lives and make the ugly, beautiful again. Often, this will happen as we sing and pray and read His word. In those quiet times, He gives us the power to overcome and put depression under our feet.