“To console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy or 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
By Jill Briscoe
A certain situation arose in my life that caused me to go to bed “oppressed” and to awaken feeling as if I had not slept at all. I can only describe the experience as a “spirit of heaviness.” I walked bowed down with the weight of those “depressing garments.”
Then I came upon Isaiah 61:3. What a promise! He would give me “a garment of praise for my spirit of heaviness”! But how? A change of clothes was surely necessary, but the “heaviness” had seemingly robbed me of the strength even to undress!
Examining the choking clothing, I recognized the garment, for I had put it on myself. The garment of heaviness resembled a straitjacket! It bound my movements. I could no longer reach out to touch people.
The problem had to do with a fellow Christian – someone I had loved, but now had almost come to hate! Victory gained on my knees would dissipate immediately upon sight of this person! The enemy would come in like a flood and almost drown me with the depressing dress of despondency. Praise to God for my adversary became the key to loosening my tight garments.
If we will allow God to dress our spirit with praise, we will begin to sing again; and others with like heavy spirits will listen to our song!