Ash Wednesday starts off the season of Lent with a somber message.
From dust you come, and from dust you shall return.
Just what you wanted to know, right? A reminder that we all have 2 things in common with all human beings—we are born and we die.
But on Ash Wednesday, we remember WHY we need Jesus in our lives.
It’s hard, this living between birth and death.
It’s hard, with sin that clouds our judgement, destroys our relationships and tarnishes God’s creation.
But if it weren’t for sin, we would not need Jesus and the grace that he gives.
And if it weren’t for death, again, we would not need Jesus and the promise of Eternal Life.
I like Ash Wednesday. Spiritually, I connect with Ash Wednesday far more than Christmas.
Ash Wednesday is the relative who comes to the party and brings up the past, or the co-worker who reminds you that you missed your deadline weeks ago, or the bill collector that calls and calls until you stop answering.
Ash Wednesday is not silent. Or joyful. But it is real, and it orients us to the Cross which stands at end of our Lenten journey.
You cannot have Easter and Good News without Ash Wednesday.
You cannot follow Jesus without knowing why you have to follow him.
I pray that this year, Ash Wednesday marks you with a more permanent cross. I pray that you dwell in the uncomfortable feelings of mortality, sin, repentance and grace. I pray that this season of Lent moves you closer to the Cross than ever before.
Blessings to you and your loved ones,