Ashes to Go

Ash Wednesday is here. Ash Wednesday is here. And it is freezing!!!

This morning as #BreakingBread gathered outside of the Starbucks on St. Paul St. to impose ashes on those who wanted them, I totally felt my mortality. I could feel my humanity from my fingers to my toes. And, to be honest,  I really didn’t like how it felt.

Ash Wednesday is suppose to do that to us, not make us cold, but remind us of our mortality. Life can be short, life is fragile and today is a day we remember all of that. Sounds  a bit morbid doesn’t it? Pretty sure many don’t like to be reminded that they are temporal. (Maybe that is why so many didn’t make eye contact with me this morning?) But there is something also beautiful about today.

Yes, we acknowledge today that life doesn’t go on forever, but we are also reminded that with death comes new life.  From the dust and the dirt, new life is created, new things can take root and grow.  With life constantly being busy, sometimes (most times for me) we miss seeing or experiencing the new life/beauty that is being created.

Many people are giving up things this Lenten season (go you!).  But, I think we also need to take up something. Take up a few extra moments soaking in the beauty. Don’t just see the beauty, be present in the beauty. Don’t just snap a iPhone pic of the sunset, sit in the glow of the sunset. Yeah, there is a good chance, a VERY good chance, this will make you late or miss something else.  However, the way I see it, if you don’t pause in the moment you have already missed something.

It was freezing this morning. I’m talking “toes numb” cold.  But there was also beauty in being fully present in the moments.


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