When I received the email from Chris Harris regarding Ashes to Go I was very hesitant to respond one way or the other. I thought it was a clever idea, but wasn’t quite sure if I agreed with such an unconventional method of giving ashes and I certainly was not sure if I could be involved in such a public display of my faith. But I kept being urged to give it a try and step out of my comfort zone.
I have several friends who have some strong opinions against organized religion. They know I’m a Christian and how much I love my church but we seldom discuss religion. What if some of my friends would see me and think I was being a “sidewalk evangelist.” But what was the chance that any of them would see me. So I agreed to participate.
Ash Wednesday arrived, I showed up at the early service and went through the quick training. They put a vestment on me and next thing you know, our team is out there in front of the courthouse. Within 15 minutes who should walk up but one of my dearest friends I had hoped wouldn’t see me! She had jury duty. The gig was up!! After we discussed her jury duty she asked what I was doing. After a brief explanation I asked if she would like ashes and she said, “Sure, why not.” And there I was giving ashes and God’s blessings to my friend. I stood there after she left simply overcome by what had just happened and the joy I felt.
God does work in strange and mysterious ways. If we are obedient, although reluctant to His call, He does the rest! I can’t wait to participate again next year and encourage you all to do the same.