As we approach Ash Wednesday in a few days, I find myself reflecting on this past year. Last Ash Wednesday was the first I’d observed with any formality. It’s not a day I had ever found particularly significant, but the concepts of repentance and cleansing, of change and fresh starts have been especially significant in recent months.

As I sit in my new apartment this Saturday morning looking out on the pristine snow and considering the possibilities that abound with a clean slate, I am in awe of the blessings that have been heaped on me this year. A renewed relationship with God, close friendships, outreach opportunities with children in this community I love, and an increased sense of peace and wellbeing to name a few.

Ash Wednesday as a day may have a bit more meaning this year. The concepts have certainly touched my heart in very meaningful ways since last year, and I hope to go into the experience with a new appreciation this Wednesday evening. I pray you may have a similar encounter with our Savior.