Ashes, specifically the reminder that we are dust and that to dust we shall return, usually plays a significant role in our commencement of Lent. And it’s something notably missing from our experience this year on account of Covid restrictions. And yet, it is not our only means of observing and honouring the season. Lent draws us into deeper, more intentional prayer, fasting, and self reflection. We are meant to use these days to meditate on the life, death and resurrection of Jesus before we can celebrate Easter, and particularly, how our lives are affected by His life and death as Christians.
And so, despite our inability to celebrate the start of Lent with our usual smudge of ash on our foreheads, I still invite you to observe a holy Lent—acknowledge within yourself that which is broken, accept and truly believe that you are worthy, loveable, and will one day be made whole because of, and regardless of that brokenness; seek out and be aware of the frailty of life that surrounds you in relationships, body, mind, spirit, creation…and commit to gently tending to that frailty; and recall that yes, you were created from the dust, and you will return to dust.