We are reminded today that “to dust we shall all return” and with that we begin the holy season of Lent. You will recall that our community will have the opportunity on the First Sunday of Lent to receive ashes.
Something new that I would like to do this Lent is to share a weekly reflection from a good man of the Church, Fr. Ed Hays, now gone home to God, but for over 50 years served as a priest in Kansas and for many of those years, as the director of the Shantivanam Prayer Community for the Laity in Easton, Kansas. Fr. Ed was a self-taught artist, a contemplative and one who always “pushed the envelope,” moved “outside the box” to give readers of his prolific writing a fresh, open and spirited idea of faith and religion. I hope these reflections will enrich your Lent.
Lenten Satellite Day
This is a Lenten celebration not to see if you are like a moon orbiting around a planet or some NASA object orbiting the earth, but to see if you are an original satellite. The word, satellite was first used for a person who attended, or was a follower of, some prince or person of great importance. The satellite was a parasite, who praised the prince and curried favor for personal gain.
Today, pause and ponder whether you are a disciple-follower of Jesus or only a satellite. A true disciple is called not to flatter or fawn over the master with pious songs and prayers, but to follow the master. As Jesus himself said, “It is not those who say, ‘Lord, Lord,’ who shall enter God’s domain but those who daily do the will of God” (Mt. 7: 21).
In the prayer of Jesus, we say with one breath, “your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven.” To follow Jesus is to strive constantly to make God’s time-reign-kingdom come wherever you work, live or even visit. No better definition for a disciple could be found than one who makes God’s time his or her time. The prophets spoke of God’s reign as coming at some distant time, and Jesus announced that this long-awaited time had come with him. So it must be for all who dare call themselves his followers. If our lives announce only the old time of injustice, inequality, and religious, racial and sexual division, regardless of how many times we have been baptized, we should find another name for ourselves besides Christian.
A blessed Ash Wednesday!
Peace and love, Pastor Kathy