Easter is a Christian celebration of Christ’s resurrection from the dead following his death on Good Friday. This is a rebirth that is commemorated around the vernal equinox, historically a time of pagan celebration that coincides with the arrival of spring and symbolizes the arrival of light and the awakening of life around us.
While neither Matt nor I are very religious we do celebrated Easter. Typically this comes in the form of dying eggs, eating jelly beans and receiving baskets full of delicious candies and chocolates. This year our celebration took another form.
After three hours and 5 garbage bags filled with donations, Matt and I celebrated the resurrection of our closet.
It was the first time since college that Matt weeded through his clothing. Our closet was jam packed with ratty polos, pleat front pants and dress shirts that were 2 sizes too big for Matt. Simply put, the disorganization was nearly killing me and I’ve been sacrificing for a lot longer than the traditional 40 days of Lent.
It was truly a holy day for the Englehauer household.
If you see someone walking down the street today who appears to have dirt on their forehead – don’t go up to them and offer to wipe it off. Today is Ash Wednesday. The dirt is supposed to be there. Trust me when I say, they probably won’t appreciate your offer, no matter how well intended. I know from experience.
And now a little history…
Ash Wednesday, is the first day of Lent and occurs 46 days before Easter. According to the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus spent 40 days fasting in the desert before the beginning of his public ministry, during which he endured temptation by Satan. Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of this 40-day period of prayer and fasting.
Ash Wednesday derives its name from the practice of placing ashes on the foreheads as a sign of mourning and repentance to God. The ashes used are typically gathered after the palms from the previous year’s Palm Sunday are burned.
This practice is common in much of Christendom, being celebrated by Catholics, Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, and some Baptist denominations.
So just remember – that dirt is supposed to be there…