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Ashes to Ashes
I wasn’t going to write another Ash Wednesday post. What else is there to stay? But the truth of the matter is that really I never know the answer to that question until I say it for myself.
I preached from Joel today. Joel 2 to be exact, the space that moves in the middle “and yet.” You see Joel has a million unprecedented events coming at him and the resolution to the war after the famine after the plague is the “and yet.”
And yet, God is still good.
And yet God loves us desperately.
And yet God is asking us to draw closer, even when we are afraid and our first instinct is to pull away.
People tell you, when you have kids, that when something bad happens kids are remarkably good at making it about them. A death? Their fault. A divorce? Their fault. A natural disaster? There were those four times they didn’t recycle their milk carton.
And as much as I want to pretend that I have grown out of this I can’t. Surely, I think, I could have done more, could have masked sooner, could have…..done….something. And perhaps that is the point of Ash Wednesday. There is a part of me that would way WAY rather have the control I can pretend I have than know that I am powerless in a sea of unprecedented events. But here I am, having come from dust, and to dust I shall return.
Thanks Be to God.
I am dust. Beloved ashes. Dirt so wonderful that Jesus chose to become it. And there in lies the truth of today. We are dust, and we will return to dust, and every single particle of us is so incredibly loved by God.
I don’t know if you are planning on giving something up (I am giving up negative self talk) or adding something in (I hope to write more, take the dog for more walks). But if you could maybe try to believe for a minute or two every day that you are wildly, deeply, widely, immensely loved by God, not in spite, but in the midst of this disaster we called life, I think that is a worthy practice for the next 39 days.