Ash Wednesday Message

Ash Wednesday Message

 

All this pain

I wonder if I’ll ever find my way

I wonder if my life could really change at all

Ashes are pretty easy to come by. Not just the ones that mark our foreheads today. The ashes that are left in the rubble of hopes dashed, dreams trampled, loves lost and challenges failed. If we’ve lived any time at all, our lives are full of dust and ashes.

There are days when we feel like dust, like these ashes—just the remains left after a blazing inferno has destroyed whatever was there before the destruction. Before it was reduced to dust.

All this earth

Could all that is lost ever be found

Could a garden come up from this ground at all

Some days we feel as if we were ashes and that the smallest gust of wind or the slightest disturbance in the air could just sweep us away and scatter us to the four corners of the earth. We feel ungrounded and fragile and vulnerable.

We forget what our loving, creative God can do with dust. It was dust by which we were formed and when our God blew breath into us, it was not to scatter and shatter us, but to breathe life in to us.

You make beautiful things

You make beautiful things out of the dust

You make beautiful things

You make beautiful things out of us

This is the day when we can admit that we have been through the fire. We come as people who have been marked by the fires we have walked through.

But the mark that is made upon our foreheads tonight is not a mark of sorrow. It is not a mark of shame or regret. It is not a mark of false piety or a mark that designates us as not good enough.

By this mark we are claiming what God can do with dust and with dirt. We acknowledge our own mortality. We accept that we were born of dust and to dust we shall return. We affirm our belief that God is God, and we are not.

All around

Hope is springing up from this old ground

Out of chaos life is being found in You

You make beautiful things

You make beautiful things out of the dust

You make beautiful things

You make beautiful things out of us

 

 

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