With a sigh and a muffled sob, I set down my ashes:
this fragile life, this frail ego, these vain illusions
of all that I might do…might have…might be.

With a sigh and twinge of regret, I set down my ashes:
dreams I have chased, wounds I have clung to,
fears that have crowded out hope like weeds.

With a sigh and a longing cry, I pick up your healing oils:
humility to recognize your glory, purpose in the work
alongside one another, gratitude of breath & body.

With a sigh and a contrite spirit, I pick up your healing oils
to sustain this journey — for forty days, for a lifetime —
surrounded by grace and animated by love.

Let the ashes be ashes.
Let the dust be dust.
Let the healing begin.

Tuesday Lectionary Leanings~Pancakes, and ashes, and Lent--oh my!


Rachel G. Hackenberg is a United Church of Christ minister, author, and soccer mom, whose new book with co-author Martha Spong is Denial Is My Spiritual Practice (and Other Failures of Faith). Today’s prayer is cross-posted from her blog.


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