Jan 28, 2013

Ash Wednesday: Rend Your Hearts

Here’s a thoughtful reflection written for Ash Wednesday by Jan Richardson.

Rend Your Heart
A Blessing for Ash Wednesday

Yet even now, says the Lord, return to me with all your heart,
with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;
rend your hearts and not your clothing. Joel 2.12-13a

To receive this blessing,
all you have to do
is let your heart break.
Let it crack open.
Let it fall apart
so that you can see
its secret chambers,
the hidden spaces
where you have hesitated
to go.

Your entire life
is here, inscribed whole
upon your heart’s walls:
every path taken
or left behind,
every face you turned toward
or turned away,
every word spoken in love
or in rage,
every line of your life
you would prefer to leave
in shadow,
every story that shimmers
with treasures known
and those you have yet
to find.

It could take you days
to wander these rooms.
Forty, at least.

And so let this be
a season for wandering
for trusting the breaking
for tracing the tear
that will return you

to the One who waits
who watches
who works within
the rending
to make your heart

~ written by Jan L. Richardson, and posted on The Painted Prayerbook blog. http://paintedprayerbook.com/