"You come from dust, and to dust you shall return."
These are the words that I use as I administer ashes. At first glance, there is a certain fatalistic morbidness conveyed. We were born, we are going to die.
But, these words are not uttered in a vacuum. These words are surrounded by the whole of the Gospel. In Jesus Christ, we know that the dust from which we were created was brought into being by God. The breath that was breathed into that dust is God's breath, and that the whole of all that dust is held in God's presence eternally.
Yes, we are dust, but we are God's dust. Thanks be to God!
May this Lenten season be a time for us to claim our divine dusty-ness and strengthen our relationship with God, others, and ourselves.
Let us pray. O Holy One, may you sweep us up into your eternal love. Amen.
In Christ's love,