Lent 2021: From Ashes to Hope

Winter Honeysuckle

Feb. 16, 2021

Honesty alert! It would be a challenge for me to try to write a Lenten blog from anything other than a Christian perspective, since I have been a Christian my entire life.  Yet my hope is that this blog will resonate with anyone who has felt like it is time to rise from the ashes of this last year of pandemic and politics, or to rise from the ashes of any past event that burdens or wearies or makes us feel less-than. Like the honeysuckle that blooms even in the bitter cold of winter, we, too, have the Creator-given potential to birth beauty and hope and to be nurtured by both.

So many faith traditions offer a time of metanoia, an invitation to contemplate one’s life intentionally and do a turn-around or a turn-toward or a turn-back-to that which is bigger than we are, be it God, Christ, Yahweh, Allah, Spirit, the Divine, the Universe, the Source of All Being, a Higher Power.  Lent, Ramadan, and Yom Kippur are just a sampling of such seasons of intentionality, fasting, and soul-searching.  None of us, no matter what we believe or where we come from or what we look like, will get through this life without experiencing some sort of “ash” event which has the power to leave us stuck, send us in a downward spiral, or lift us to some new awareness and a life-giving transformation.  This blog is not so much about what we give up in these ash-filled times but instead is about what we can give to make ourselves and our world more whole, more loving, more sacred.  That is, after all, the root meaning of the word “sacrifice”:  to make holy.

So I invite anyone who is open to going on a journey that may meander outside the safe boxes of what our particular religions, or our own secular beliefs, have taught (or constricted?) us to explore how we can transition from ashes to hope.  On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I will be sharing my own musings, poetry, and music along the way, counting on ancient spiritual guides.  My hope is that you will share your musings and reflections in return and that, together, we may turn toward Love.

Blessings to you. ~ Rosemary