By Rev. Sir Dave Heney, KCHS
Lent began a short while ago and I hope you are doing well in this spiritual season. Perhaps you made plans “to give up something for Lent” or maybe add a spiritual practice. Both are great ideas.
Lent began on Ash Wednesday with one of the most famous of all Catholic rituals, wearing ashes on our foreheads. People of all faiths recognize this age-old sign that Catholics wear. But it lasts just one day. I learned a different lesson recently.
I glanced at my calendar the other day and, to my surprise, realized I was scheduled to give an important talk to a large group … in just three days! How could I have forgotten? I quickly assembled paper and pen, bible, catechism, and other resources, and worked hard to make up for lost time. Then I glanced again and realized the talk was not in three days, … but three weeks! I had plenty of time! I happily put all the materials aside.
Ash Wednesday reminds me to not put things off. Those remarkable words, “Remember you are dust and into dust you will return” simply and clearly tells me that that one day my life will end, that I do not have all the time in the world, and so I should use my time well.
That is actually good news. Ashes publicly declare that if there is something good that you can do, don’t put it off, just do it today.
You can say “I love you” to your spouse sometime later, but ashes tell you to say it today. You can say “I forgive you” another time, but ashes tell you to offer it today. You can ask “please forgive me” when you feel better, but ashes tell you to ask today.
This Lent you can reset your spiritual calendar to always read “Today.” This Lent we can keep the lesson of Ash Wednesday every day. We don’t have all the time in the world, so let us use our time well.