Ashes of Grief
Wednesday, March 1, 2017
Job 2:7-8: So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD and struck Job with loathsome sores from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. And he took a piece of broken pottery with which to scrape himself while he sat in the ashes.
Today begins the season of Lent. It is a season of lamenting, which means, actively grieving for sins, evil, and hurts. Job was lamenting and full of grief. So, as was the custom, Job sat in ashes and wore sackcloth instead of his normal clothes.
We as Christians, don't sit in ashes. We "wear" ashes upon our foreheads. It is there to remind us of our laments, our sins, our hurts, and our struggles. It is in the shape of a cross to remind us that through Jesus and His death upon the cross, we are forgiven, renewed, and restored through God's grace and love. When Pastor James and I impose ashes upon you today, we will say, "From dust you came. To dust you shall return." That means our bodies will decay and turn to dust, like the dust that formed Adam. That phrase reminds us of the consequence of sin in our lives.
It also reminds us of how God so loves us that He sent Jesus to die for our sins and cleanse us from all sin. So we also spend time in pondering in meditation the life, death, resurrection of Jesus Christ who will raise the bodies, form them again, this time in perfect forgiveness and grace, so that we will live with Him forever. So through lamenting, there is hope and life. Let's pray.
Father, we know our sin. It is always before us. Lead us to remember the work of Jesus who saved us from our sins and gave to us a new life. We pray this in His name. And all God's children say...
See you tonight as we celebrate the grace and mercy of Jesus. The service starts at 6:30 after a Pancake dinner at 5:30.
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Pastor Robert Hemsath joined Faith Lutheran Church and School as the Senior Pastor in January 2017. Pastor Hemsath comes to FLC from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Waxahachie, TX. He has also served congregations in Aberdeen, ID and Pocatello, ID. He has been a Lutheran pastor for the past 20 years.