The Impatience Club
Meditations in Ashes

In Dust and Ashes

Photo Credit - Rev. Neil Willard - This file is licensed under the Creative CommonsAttribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

Ashes to Go at Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church


"Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return."

"... she sprinkled ashes on her head, tore her robe, and with her face buried in her hands went away crying." - II Samuel 13:19

" "O daughter of my people, gird on sackcloth, roll in the ashes" - Jermiah 6:26

"... I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes...." - from Job 42:3-6

 "I turned to the Lord God, pleading in earnest prayer, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes" - Daniel 9:3

Oh God, who sees me, knows me, and loves me while seeing through my pretensions, here I am.

There is nothing I can tell you about myself that you do not already know.

I am laid bare by your penetrating gaze and your Word divides by thoughts and attitudes, sorting them out in ways I cannot even comprehend.

You know all about me and still I have the urge to hide and cover myself with the leaves of shame.

Crack my facade, dissolve the masks I wear.

Give me the grace to be real today, real and vulnerable, and open and compassionate with myself and others.

Your love validates my existence and your mercy gives me courage to embrace the ugliness I see in myself, the impurity of my motives, the haughtiness of my words, the impulsiveness of my poor choices.

They are a part of all I have been and am becoming and I am not stuck in them, nor do they define me.

You define me and in freeing me to be me and become more, Your message from Jesus to me and through me that there is a possibility of joyous repentance and kingdom purpose ring true.

You know me and yet you choose me, in love, to be one of yours!

I cannot wrap my mind around the grace of it, but I receive it that I may give it.

Make me, like Francis, an instrument of your peace today.

I am not worthy, but I am available.

I repent in dust and ashes.

Because I follow Jesus, I ask this in His Name.