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Finding Harmony: Ash Wednesday

February 13, 2013

Day 1: Ash Wednesday

Verse for reflection: The Lord delights in you and will claim you as his own.
Isaiah 62:4

My oldest daughter and I both remember the time she accompanied me to a fancy hotel at the age of eight for a grown-up Virginia Press Women banquet. I had thrown in a pair of dress shoes that I thought she could still wear.

As we hurried to get dressed at the hotel, she exclaimed, “Mama, those shoes don’t fit me any more,” like she was the one talking to a child. After mild panic and trying, Cinderella-step-sister-like, to squeeze her feet into her dress shoes, I eased up and said, “Oh just go ahead and wear your tennis shoes.”

I had to swallow a bit of my pride as I hastily explained to one woman who glanced at my daughter’s shoes, “Kids have a way of growing so fast. I thought she could still wear her dress shoes!”

But the rest of the evening was wonderful—and I savored watching my daughter add her own special glow and bright conversation to the candlelit table, sneakers safely out of sight under the table.


More than any parent, God delights in us, as today’s verse says. That may seem like a weird way to begin the solemnity of Lent, with the accompanying self-denial and sacrifice we sometimes associate with the season. But if you participate(d) in Ash Wednesday services today with imposition of ashes—with the somber reminder that we are mortal and to dust we shall return—let it also be a sign of the love and joy God marks us with: God knew us in the womb and claims us forever and ever. Amen.

Action: As you go through the day, (or think back on it) imagine God delighting in you. How? Why? What specifically does God savor about you? Enjoy.


I invite you to join me on this journey through Lent (if you sign up to follow this blog it will be easier).

As a thank you, I can send you a FREE booklet I wrote several years ago, 14 Days to a Better You, which is a look at the classic 7 Vices and 7 Virtues. It’s more fun than it sounds and small enough to slip into an envelope. No obligation—just my way of connecting with blog followers a little better. Leave a comment and I’ll be able to see your email and follow up.

Adapted from Why Didn’t I Just Raise Radishes: Finding God in the Everyday, by Melodie Davis, Herald Press, 1994, p. 15-17.


From → Faith, Family Life

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