Ash Wednesday – Lenten Times 2016

IMG_20160212_212632 Ashes and Sand.

Ash Wednesday arrived. I made it to the 10am service and I didn’t realise or think ahead to the solemnness or pilgrimage that it marks the start of. A pilgrimage without a physical walk in the sandstorm that rages within; not so much unknown this time, I am looking to seek out those transgressions that need to be smoothed by the sandstorm. There is no visible way through a sandstorm, all the references for guidance are gone, like in hillfog where the cairns are silent sentinels waiting to be discovered and marking our arrival on the summit to offer shelter.

In this internal sandstorm I know I will have GOD’s cloak to comfort me in times of need and I know that this time I will not be alone even though there will be moments that it will feel that way, I won’t feel totally abandoned and desolate; this time I know that I have to stop and ask Him for His presence and He will be there. Christ will sit by my side to give me strength and courage to move on. Even though I can only offer that moment, one day at a time, He already knows that I will battle with that thought each day and yet, He waits.


My drawing reflects a momentary glimpse of an image in my mind that trys to depict the precipice of the sandstorm that awaits me or that I am already in. The circular / spiral motif is one that I seem to unconsciously draw time and time again and so I stick with it. In my linear timeframe, Christ gave me a grain of sand and in this was all what He is (long before I was aware of Julian of Norwich’s hazelnut!) and the circular motif was how I tried to convey and share my experience with my prayer guide at the time. It is an image that is significant to me.

I am not following Malcolm Guite’s “The Word in the Wilderness” for Lent this year but I will dive into the poems as his work is always a treasure trove of rich references to theology and literature, thought, poems and reflections that needs our attention because we need it. However, I wholeheartedly recommend that you try it out and bathe in its lavish resources to explore Lent this season x


Gosh, we had sunshine and warm days last Easter!


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