Ash Wednesday

Many are saying to me, “There is no help for you in God.”
But you, O Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, and the one who lifts up my head.
I cry aloud to the Lord, and he answers me from his holy hill.
Ps. 3:2-4

Today, Ash Wednesday, I force myself to acknowledge two things:
  1. That I will die someday, and
  2. That I am a sinner.
Either of those things is unpleasant. When combined, however, they are a devastating admission. I don't want to leave this earth with nothing but a negative legacy. But I seem unable to change the way things are. Most people these days say that my faith is a figment of my imagination, but honestly, I don't know to whom else I can turn but God. And so on this, the first day of my preparation for the Great Day of Resurrection, I will cry out to God for understanding and mercy. Dare I hope that my voice will reach to the pinnacle of the heavens? Or could the good news be true, and through the Incarnation, God really does dwell in our midst—my voice doesn't have nearly as far to travel because of Christ.

May I take seriously the Ash Wednesday message: Remember that from dust you came and to dust you shall return. Repent, and believe the gospel.
I thank you, Lord, that you are my protection and my hope. I bow before you, and dare to hope that you will lift my head—covered as it is in the dust of the earth—and say to me, You are forgiven and I grant you my grace. In the Name of him who taught me to pray...

Psalm to be repeated until it is known by memory: