Today has been Ash Wednesday.
I have just returned from the cathedral with an ash cross on my forehead. It was placed there with the following words:
‘remember that you are but dust, from dust you came and from dust you will return. Turn from sin and be faithful to Christ.’
That may seem quite morbid, and there are definitely resonances with a funeral service there; but I think this simple acts serves a good purpose at the start of lent as it reminds me of my mortality.
Life in our western, technological, 21st century, materialistic world where life can be prolonged, where any food can be eaten out of season, and where we can purchase anything from ebay presents us with an illusion – the illusion that we are in control. Th illusion, I guess, that our little worlds do revolve around us.
This evening a small ash cross, two simple lines, serves as a reminder that it is actually all about God.
This lent I will be endeavouring to spend more time in prayer and contemplation as I seek to lose the illusion that it’s about me, and regain a truer image of God.