The Ashes of Lent
Last week during our small group time, we reflected together on the season of Lent. We gave thanks for the resurrection of Jesus and what that means for us, but we also intentionally spoke of the “ashes that plague us” and the power of naming those struggles.
In my small group, we named anxiety, family issues, prejudice, peer pressure, addiction, cancer, death, and broken relationships. I’m sure that many other ashes were named around our building. As we lamented, we reminded each other of a theme that has popped up many times throughout our school year and is particularly relevant during this season of Lent. Without Friday, there is no Sunday, without the cross there is no empty tomb, and without Lent there is no Easter.
There was great power in speaking these areas of struggle that we all carry with us daily. We were reminded that we are part of a body that is called to listen and encourage. God has not called us to carry our “ashes” alone, but rather with the support of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Galatians 6:2 reminds us, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”
During this Lenten season, I pray that we can listen well to our sisters and brothers, and both lament with them as we reflect on the cross and celebrate with them as rejoice in the empty tomb.