LENT'S GARDEN
10 April 2014

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I am still sitting before the fire looking at ashes, surely they must be good for something other than my stirring. Unprocessed emotion: hurt, frustration, unresolved anger, all these leap up in flames as the fire roars, but then, when all is silent and we are alone, these emotions leave us cold, confused and agitated.

How, in Lent, do I light a holy fire in my soul? I give God permission to clean out the ashes, as I grieve, adding my tears to the sorrow in my heart. Water and ashes make lye. Soap. God washes my soul with the very hurt that has wounded me; He purifies me with pain that I might be more His and less mine.

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 Then He asks me to take the leftover ashes, those that haven't refined my soul, and bury them in the garden. Some pain must just be let go of, taken out of our hearts as God asks us to move on, to grow and be changed. Ashes balance the ground's acidity; acidic items contain no oxygen so they must be combined with others to bring life. God adds joy and peace to the grief of our souls.

  "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope, by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13

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It all has to breathe, our soil and our souls; God's mercy mixes with our humanity, transforming us.

Medicine from Sacred Scripture:

 

"I pray that out of God's glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ." Ephesians 3:16-19