Ash Wednesday reminds us of two important aspects to our humanity. The first is that we are of the earth. We are made of the stuff of the earth and in the end it is to humus that our bodies return. Throughout our lives we are an interconnected part of nature. A YouTube clip created by Louie Schwartzberg contains a child reflecting that when they watch TV they see something that is not real but when they go outside into nature they have a space to explore, to imagine, to go deeper and to find things of beauty. We are connected to nature and are inspired and rejuvenated by it.
The second is that in our humanity there is humility in recognising that we make mistakes and hurt others and fall short of what God intended us to be. Just as new life grows out of ashes, so too can new life grow out of the ashes of our mistakes, through forgiveness. As we go through this Lenten season there is the opportunity to reflect on how new life can grow in our own lives through forgiving and being forgiven. As we look to Easter we are grateful for the forgiveness that Jesus has gained for us by dying on the cross.