Today’s readings seem to echo the same word: our heart. We are required to examine our hearts with an authenticity that cuts to the core. It was a common practice to tear one’s garments as an outward display of repentance. However, God is asking us to tear our hearts in contrition. We judge the outward appearance but God judges the heart. God calls us to be authentic, to be true to self and God. Today the Church begins a season of reflection on Jesus’ passion and death. The fruits of the Spirit are produced for the benefit of others. We may not see how significant a change we are
making in the grand scheme of things. Every life is precious, every life is sorely needed for the functioning of other lives. And when we get this, the fact that we are needed by those around us, it all makes perfect sense: that we are formed by dust and once our divine purpose is fulfilled, our mortal bodies return to dust. So when we receive ashes today, let us wear it with an awareness of our call to a purposeful life.
Prayer: Abba Father, may I draw closer to you this season of Lent. Amen.