Posted on Wed, Feb 22, 2012
Just tell the Truth
Ash Wednesday 2012
It is much better to always tell the truth; there is a whole lot less to remember.
I have sinned against in thought, word and deed
Lent is a time of honest and genuine self-examination. God knows us and loves us more than we will ever know. Go ahead, talk to God, God can handle it.
Thought: Do it in a quiet place where you can’t lie to yourself or agree with someone who will just want to make you happy or feel better and justify your actions. Take enough time, no cell phones; maybe not even on a beach… it is too beautiful and distracting. Don’t lie to yourself.
Word: How many times have we, in a fit of emotion or anger posted something on Facebook and then totally regretted it… Yes, we can “erase” or delete it, but the words have been printed and are out in cyberspace forever… and there is nothing we can do about it. How often have said something, and really regretted it… in an emotional moment, or in a fit of anger, we let the words fly, and they are free, never to return to our big mouths again.
Deed: Jesus tells us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the prisoner, care for the widow, orphan and stranger (immigrant)… these are the easy ones. Jesus tells us to forgive each other, Jesus tells us to forgive ourselves, not like human beings “try” to forgive, but the way Jesus forgave us… forgive completely. This is the hard stuff. Sometimes we have to let the weight of desiring revenge or getting even, or demanding the other person make up for their wrongs TO ME, before I forgive, can be the most costly mistake we will ever make. When we think like this, we have made ourselves the prosecutor, judge and executioner. Talk, listen, and forgive. Let it go before the weight of the anger tears you and your loved ones apart. Let it go, everyone can see how the stress of holding onto grudges or anger tears us apart. Just look at the newspaper today about the physical affects of stress is on the body.
The children at the preschool saw the ashes on my forehead this morning and they really wanted to know what it meant. I told them, it is a symbol telling us “I/we are human.”
We are human, not perfect. We are human and God knows everything about us, especially from where we came, dust; and to where we shall return, dust. Between those times, we walk the journey with Jesus so that we can be free of the fear of death and our future home in the dust, or sand. Jesus decided to go to the cross so that we can now be free from all that holds us down during our journey. Let us begin our journey tonight, walk and talk with Jesus for forty days and then rise with Jesus on Easter morning. Amen.
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