Dust of Life
In a lifetime of Ash Wednesdays which begin yet another Lent, here are
some of my one-liner learnings: Ashes remind us, with a shock, that we
are God's creation, made for God, and not the other way around. Ashes
remind us of the brevity of the gift of life, and the grace of eternal
life in the heart of God. Ashes remind us that we are born to live, really
live, before we die. Ashes remind us of a resolve to a Lent, and a lifetime,
of a more authentic relationship with Jesus the Christ. For reasons like
these it does not occur to us that we participate in a "strange" custom
of ashes and dust. To the contrary. With hearts full of awe, we seek gold
and God in the dust.
--from the essay "Absurd and Awe-full Ashes"
by the Rev. Dr. Douglass M. Bailey
the essay in its entirety.