Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the forty days of Lent - the season leading up to Easter.
For thousands of years, Christians have been preparing for easter by walking through Lent, consisting of 40 days, patterned after Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness.
Lent is a season for repentance, fasting, and self-reflection, of course, this is saturated in the truth of God’s love and grace to us through Jesus.
Ashes on the head have signified repentance from biblical times. Job said, “I repent in dust and ashes.” Ashes also represent mourning, as Tamar in the Old Testament used them to mourn her abuse which was not in any way her fault, but which devastated her. Ashes are the result of burning. This burning in our lives is from our own sins and follies and from the abuse of others, and ashes represent both. They remind us that we are living in this mortal world, this fallen world, and that we are made from dust, when all else is burned away. We are mortal and will return to our maker.
The service will focus on repentance, grace and forgiveness. It is a sobering reminder, at the start of Lent, that we are wholly dependent on the redemption and forgiveness from Jesus.
During our 30 minutes, we will reflect and sing together, read passages of scriptures that remind us that we are mortal, and that we must repent, and as Jesus says, keep on repenting. We will end our time with the tradition of placing Ash on our foreheads to signify our sorrow for the sin the put Jesus on the cross.
Join us Wednesday Mar 1 to start the Lent season remembering and observing that we are in need of Jesus.