Tag Archive for Ash Wednesday

Ashes to Ashes

We do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. (2 Corinthians 4:16, NIV)

We’re all engaged in a battle to keep our bodies healthy and attractive. It’s a worthy effort.

But it’s a battle we will lose. Our bodies will decay and die. It’s happening right now.

On the other hand, that inner core of your life, that relationship with God, that inner life you share with Him, can grow more and more healthy as time goes by, no matter what happens to your body. That’s where your future lies. That’s where you should invest your effort.

Jesus, I look forward to ever-increasing health in You.

All the care we lavish on our bodies does only
a little good
for a very short time.
Nourishing our relationship with God is
infinitely fruitful
today and forever.

Hymn: Ashes to Ashes




Ash Wednesday, Lent 1 


Monday –      Prepare for Ash Wednesday
         Hymn: Ash Wednesday Hymn (recording) (printed)

Tuesday –     Ashes to Ashes
         Hymn: Ashes to Ashes (recording) (printed)

Wednesday – Have Mercy
         Hymn: Have Mercy (recording) (printed)

Thursday –    Prepare for Lent
         Hymn: Hear His Call (recording) (printed)

Friday –          The Christ of Lent
         Hymn: Come and Follow Me (recording) (printed)

Saturday –     The Temptation of Jesus
         Hymn: With Jesus in Temptation (recording) (printed)


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from Prepare Yourself for Worship

Prepare for Ash Wednesday

Father, we worry and complain about so many things,
but we rarely give even a passing thought to
what is saddest and most destructive
in our entire world:
our sin and
our unrepentant hearts.

Today, Lord, make us conscious of our sin and
its terrible price.
We have turned our back on You, our Creator,
the only Source of all that is good.
We have dethroned You
from our lives and
from our race.
In Your place, we have enthroned our
short-lived selves.
The results have been predictable:
suffering, and

Father, we own our sin.
It is the one thing in this entire world that is
truly our own.
We face and accept our physical death
as the inevitable result of our sin.
We bow to You, face down,
excusing nothing,
claiming nothing,
clinging to nothing but Your mercy.
We confess and repent, Father.
Have mercy on us.
O God, have mercy!

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Ash Wednesday Hymn
Printed Music & Lyrics

Sharing His Life

My wife and I have enjoyed browsing through antique shops. I got hooked on them years ago when I collected old books. So when she and I got the chance to spend a weekend away together, we decided to tour the small towns nearby and visit their shops.

The weekend was wrapping up, and we were in Gower, Missouri. In a small store there I came across a funeral card for a man who had died in 1887. Reading the card, I couldn’t help thinking about that man. He brought to mind the countless individuals around the world who have come and gone, seemingly unknown and unremembered. So many people. So many generations. We are like flowers. We bloom and proudly spread our petals toward the sun, only to die as quickly as we came, leaving little sign of our coming or our going. What difference does our living make? What does it matter that I, or any of us, were ever here?

We are surrounded by a stream of death that flows unceasingly through our world, engulfing all life, threatening to wash away all concept of meaning and significance. For me, antique shops quietly testify to that. They are graveyards for our treasures. When we’re gone, the things we counted precious are left behind to sell for pennies or to gather dust. They sit there on the shelf, mocking the foolishness and futility of our lives–lives hungrily invested in what is doomed to quickly pass.

As I stood there and saw myself as part of that stream of death, I was reminded that there is more.

I am not just a physical body that is dying even now. The life in me is the life of my Creator. He has shared it with me, and His life is unending. He is not a God of death and darkness, but of life and light. His life will not die with this body, and this world is not His final arena of existence or meaning.

What is more, I can know Him. I can know Him personally and live in a relationship with Him. I can please Him and talk to Him. I can learn of Him and grow in Him. I can fulfill the purpose for which I, and all this, was created.

That’s what I want above anything else. I want to become the person He designed me to be.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Ash Wednesday Hymn
Printed Music & Lyrics