Last week we kicked off Lent with Ash Wednesday. At the service we had the opportunity to go forward to receive the imparting of ashes on our foreheads or palms if we chose. In doing so we heard the words, "Ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in dying we rise."
The lenten season is usually associated with Jesus' temptation in the wilderness by Satan preceded by 40 days of fasting. We go through these 40 days of Lent to identify with Jesus' time in the wilderness as well as His preparation for the cross.

It also reminds of us of our mortality. Which isn't usually our favorite thing to think about. 

Tonight our pastor said we were going to do something different during Lent this year. During the blessing--the last song we sing--she will be having ashes available each Sunday during Lent. Along with the lenten associations already mentioned with the ashes, it also reminds us that God makes all things new.
My 9 year old went forward of his own volition tonight to receive the ashes. He had chosen not to go with to the Ash Wednesday service, but thought he'd get his forehead marked tonight instead. I was proud of him for doing so. I gave him a wink while he was in the line.
I didn't get a good chance to ask him about going forward tonight. I don't know what he gets out of it; I don't often know what I get out of it or if I understand the lenten journey much. I guess that's why it's a journey. I hope its the beginning of a good journey for my son as well.

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