Today you get two posts. That's right. For my second post, scroll down and tell me if you think Jesus would go to Mardi Gras.
"We are brought down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground. Rise up and help us; redeem us because of your unfailing love." Psalm 44:25,26
Today was Ash Wednesday. Being Mennonites for most of our lives, we have never been to an Ash Wednesday service. Mennonnites do not celebrate many of the religious days that the so called "high churches" do. So when our friend invited us to go with her to her church tonight, I jumped at the chance, and was really looking forward to it. It did not disappoint. These are my pictures from the evening. We get ashes on our foreheads to remind us that we are from dust and will return there. To remind us how badly God wants us to turn to him and repent. In the Old Testament, men would repent by pouring ashes on their heads or sitting in ashes. Tonight the pastor reminded us that our plans sometimes crumble into dust. And this is often because they are OUR plans, and not Gods. It reminded me of the saying "Men make plans and God laughs". Can you see the ashes on our foreheads? When we went up front to take communion and have the ashes applied, the pastor said wonderful, reassuring words to each of us. He made the sign of the cross. The feeling that came over me was one of reassurance, security, and great comfort. I know what God's promises are to us and that He has sealed us for our inheritance (2 Cor. 1:22-Eph. 1:13,4:30). But somehow, this was a strong physical reminder of that. Almost like God saying to me "It's going to be alright, Ginny." As we left the church in the cold snowy darkness, I looked up and saw a new moon. Like that moon, I felt that I was new, too. But of course I was still the same, so maybe I should say REnewed. All from a few ashes.
"Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that He may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you-even Jesus. Acts 3:19