Tattered and Mended

The season of Lent began on Wednesday.  Many of us were marked with ashes in the sign of the cross on our foreheads to observe the start of the season.  This practice is a way of remembering the mystery and miracle of our humanity—that all of this beautiful and terrible life that we know begins and ends in dust. It is only as the Spirit of God breathes into the dust that it finds order, meaning, and love.  Life is dusty, fragile, and fleeting.  

During the 40-day season of Lent we ponder this mystery.  It humbles us.  We generally spend a lot of time in life trying to distance ourselves from dirt and dust, to make ourselves more permanent and perfect.  No matter how hard we try, no matter what avenues we pursue, we finally realize it is not achievable.  We still come to a place where we need forgiveness.  We come to a place where we need to forgive others.  

We realize that when you’re made of dust and you live in a world of dust, you’re going to get dusty and dirty.  When you’re imperfect and you live in a world full of imperfect people, there are going to be times when things get messy up and chaotic and upsetting.  More often than not, life leaves us tattered and dusty.  Even those people, jobs, faith, and organizations we love leave us tattered and dusty.  And we have been a part of leaving others and ourselves that way as well.

Our faith helps us to acknowledge this.  Throughout the scriptures we find seasons when the people of God are called to reflect, to fast and pray, and to ask for forgiveness from and to grant forgiveness to others.  We realize we can’t do it without God.  That is when the mending begins.   

During this Lenten season we are invited to shift our focus and energy from trying to keep everything clean and new and perfect, to valuing it so much that we learn how to mend and create something beautiful out of what has been tattered or bruised or broken.  This is what forgiveness is all about. This is what God does for us through Jesus.  In Jesus, God becomes dust and is tattered so that the whole world can be mended.  

I look forward to observing this Lenten season with you as we consider what it means to be “Tattered and Mended” and how even as God mends us, we are invited to be menders of the world.


Pastor Suzanne

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