By the time you read this we will have already begun the season of Lent. With the fun and joy of Shrove Tuesday where we will fill ourselves with yummy pancakes, and where we will enter into the season of Lent with a said communion in Mundford at 10am the following day on what is known as Ash Wednesday, with ashes placed in the sign of the cross on our foreheads, reminding us to ‘remember that we are but dust, and to dust we shall return, turn away from sin and be faithful to Christ’. These words, a powerful reminder not only of our own mortality, but that as we enter into the 6 week season of Lent, we remember all that Jesus did for us as he prepared for and died on the cross to bring us into a right and close relationship with God, where His resurrection takes us into a new way of living, with hope in faith, that we too will receive eternal life, where there is no more death or pain, but only peace and eternal love.
A couple of years ago I had the privilege of visiting the Holy Land where we walked the Dela Rosa through Jerusalem, the Way of the Cross. The streets were crowded, long and narrow, it was hot and all up hill. It was a powerful experience as we placed ourselves into Christ’ shoes, as we were led to the place where he was crucified. How painful it must have been for him, and a contrast from Palm Sunday, where the people had rejoiced at the coming of their King – for this was a very different journey, one of sadness, pain and rejection, and then there ahead was the site of the cross, so powerful as we placed our hands into the place where he was said to be crucified. The smell of the anointing stone will remain with me for- ever, where they lay his body after death, to anoint him and wrap him in cloths, and then the visit to the empty tomb – how great and awesome the feeling of emptiness, for he had Risen – Alleluia!
For us, life can sometimes feel a journey of up-hill struggle, one of pain, rejection and sadness, but as we journey through the season of Lent into Holy Week and the rejoicing of Easter, we are reminded that Jesus walks with us all the way, and eventually will lead us into a deep place of hope, and joy and rejoicing….it is not the end, but only the beginning….!
Every blessing Zoe
Revd. Zoe Ferguson (Priest in Charge Mundford Group Benefice & Assistant Priest to Hilborough & Oxborough groups) Day off Monday.
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