Ash Wednesday

Today is Ash Wednesday, the first day of the season of Lent taking us to Good Friday and, ultimately, Easter Sunday. The symbol of ash is poignant; it draws us to recall our mortality. We remember that God created us from the dust of the ground (Gen. 2:7); and, because of our sin, to dust we shall return (Gen. 3:19).

That would be the end of our story if not for the wondrous reality of the Lord's compassion for us. God lovingly formed us from the dust of the ground and breathed the Spirit into us (Gen. 2:7). And out of that abundant love, while we were still dirt-caked from sin, Christ died for us (Rom. 5:8). Then, by his resurrection, Jesus broke the curse of returning to dust, and gave us "new life and ... a hope that never dies" (1 Pet. 1:3 NLV). Thanks be to Jesus who lovingly breathes his Spirit into us (John 20:22) freeing us from the dusty shackles of sin!