From Dust to Dust
Drive like you’re carrying ashes in your car…
…that’s my new barometer for caution.
As I hopped out of my van, I ran into our house to put ashes from our service yesterday evening onto my kids’ foreheads. Saying “from dust you are, to dust you shall return” to a 6, 5, and 2-year-old is surreal. Thinking about these tiny lives, barely getting started, becoming dust again is unfathomable. After placing ashes on their foreheads, they asked me all kinds of questions about why we (the Church) do what we do during Lent.
Why is it important for us to reflect about Jesus during Lent, mom?
What does reflect mean?
Are we really, only dust?
Does Lent end with Jesus dying on the cross?
What does resurrection mean?
While they asked me these questions I thought about Jesus’s call for us to embrace childlike faith. Their questions are so simple, devoid of the complexity adults bring to a discussion. Perhaps these are questions you wonder about, too, but don’t know how to ask. These are necessary questions for any person to ask, though; whether you are a skeptic, new to the faith, or a seasoned Christian.
Why, after all these years do the people of the Church put ashes on their foreheads every Ash Wednesday, give up or add to their daily lives for 40 days, mourn on Good Friday, and celebrate on Resurrection Sunday (Easter)?
I think it is because we understand how necessary it is to remind ourselves of who we are and Whose we are. It is why God, in His word, repeats to us over and over again phrases like, “fear not,” “I am the Lord your God,” “I am with you,” and “do this in remembrance of me.” God knows we need a constant reminder of Him because our world is so loud, our distractions great, and our minds so easily swayed.
My prayer, Faith Family, is that this Lent you could remember who God is and who He made you to be. Perhaps this means you’ll start a new devotional, spend more time in His word, or focus on prayer. This posture of drawing nearer to God requires a sense of humility, which brings us back to dust. When we recognize we are but dust, we will shift our focus from ourselves (the created) to God (the Creator).
-Tone Waters, Director of GO & Communications