“Ash Wednesday is the beginning of the Lent season. It’s important that we observe the inauguration of the Lenten season as we join ourselves (fellow Christian believers all over the globe) together, placing ashes on our foreheads and praying prayers of repentance.
The purpose of Lent at a macro level is to remind us of the cost of sin. We no longer have animal sacrifices to remind us as in days of old and it’s easy to just throw a prayer asking Jesus’ forgiveness skyward and move on. Lent is a Christian season that guides us toward Good Friday and ultimately shows us what our redemption cost.
On a micro level we often give up something for Lent. The tradition is that you give up chocolate or coffee etc. Although a cute tradition, it’s a little misguided. During the forty days of Lent we invite the Holy Spirit to reveal to us what has fallen out of alignment. We ask that we be given eyes to see what has come between us and God. Not all things in our lives are bad, but when they come between us and Jesus we are oriented to them rather than God. We then choose to give them up for a season so that Christ can re-integrate them into our lives appropriately. ”
—–(Quote above – From Father Brian Hardin of Four Winds Anglican Mission ) —
Ash Wednesday is a time to reconsider, to reassess who we are and how we are living… as the popular Christian rock/pop band Switchfoot says in one of their great lyrics… “Are We Who We wanna BE?” Not in the negative context per say… but in the contemplative and open to hear God tell us anything kind of way… are we?
So let me encourage you to consider taking a moment today to consider Ash Wednesday as more than a catholic event, or more than an “old” church experience, maybe it’s time to consider observing this time-honored Christian tradition of faith. Maybe even include your kids, your family and your friends in this process? Who knows… there are a lot of Wednesday night bible studies and prayer groups out there in the Christian expanse of faith and family who just might find this opportunity life-giving. I know I sure have.
As families, it might be fun to consider together what you might need to “re-align” in your home in preparation of Easter. Less media, more sun, or less pizza and more veggies… this doesn’t need to become a “religious” exercise, keep it real. Honest and authentic… in forty days, let me/us know what happened?
I can guarantee you, God will speak if you take the time to get quiet enough to hear.
Peace out RTP.