February 17, 2021
Ash Wednesday Reflection
51 When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem. 52 And he sent messengers ahead of him. On their way they entered a village of the Samaritans to make ready for him; 53 but they did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem. – Luke 9:51-53
Luke 9: 51 says that Jesus’ face was set toward Jerusalem. There are still 10 chapters before Jesus arrives in Jerusalem – he has lots of ground to cover on his way to the cross.
There is still lots of “ground” for us to cover as well on our way to Holy Week. The invitation for us is to set our own faces for the journey, ready to listen to the voice of God speaking to the very inmost parts of who we are.
I offer this Ash Wednesday poem in a spirit of hopefulness for us as we face ourselves this Lenten Season.
Ash Wednesday Poem
Poem by Christine Sine
We have chosen to fast not with ashes but with actions
Not with sackcloth but in sharing
Not in thoughts, but in deeds,
We will give up our abundance
To share food with the hungry
We will give up our comfort
To provide homes for the destitute
We will give up our fashions
To see the naked clothed.
We will share where others hoard.
We will free where others oppress
We will heal where others harm
Then God’s light will break out on us
God’s healing will quickly appear
God will guide us always
God’s righteousness will go before us
And we will find our joy in the Lord
We will be like a well-watered garden
We will be called repairers of broken walls
Together we will feast at Gods’ banquet table
This poem offers a beautiful words that fill our hearts with hope and imagination about who we can become. Admittedly, the descriptions are very aspirational – almost too good to actually be attained. But I think they are worthy to be considered as they invite us into a different way of seeing ourselves and how we relate to the world and the people around us. It sounds funny to say but sometimes we forget that well-being of others depends on us becoming fully aware of our inter-connectedness.
As we begin our Lenten journey, may we allow the Holy Spirit to disrupt our normal patterns of life and awaken again to the invitation to love our neighbor.
On the way together,