Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ashes

Ash Wednesday, 2011

What has to die in me?  What has to give way?  What am I holding--so tight, so resolute, so damn sure?

It seems to me that these are the questions for Ash Wednesday.  Jesus turns his face, his life toward Jerusalem, toward the always unfinished 'City of Peace.'  He invites me to do the same.  He says, "Let's make a pilgrimage together, a pilgrimage to peace, a pilgrimage to unity, a pilgrimage to justice for the broken and the hungry."  

I'm ready to go.  

"But not so quick," he says.  "There are things within you--things that have to die.  There are borders, boundaries that have to give way.  There are certainties you'll have to release.  That's the journey.  That's how we make our way.  To Jerusalem.  The City of Peace."

The ashes on my forehead now: they remind me of all this.  That the journey is hard.  That the journey is mine.  That I may not recognize myself when we reach Jerusalem.  Am I ready?  Am I ready for that kind of Easter?  For resurrection this year?