happy vaLENTine’s day

​What do 2018, 1945, 1934, 1923, 1877 and 2029 have in common?
Valentines Day and Ash Wednesday
colliding on the same day, with Easter Sunday on April 1st.
(And for those of us with undying hope…the Detroit Tigers website seems to think it’s a good omen as the 1945 Tigers won the World Series and there was a traffic stopping winter storm on February 9th — that’s about the best news I’ve heard about the Tigers for a while)
Welcome to VaLENTines  Day/Ash Wednesday.
And, welcome to my Lenten journey.  ​I’m glad to have your company along the journey.
I do my best thinking, praying and being and imagining in the middle of a community of friends and family.
Some stories, some prayers, some directions Lent sends me, and some hopes I have for the life we share.
Nothing terribly earth-shattering, but actually, nothing that feels more important.
Show Up- Pay Attention-Tell the Truth-Don’t be Attached to the Results
Over these next 40 days, we will form a cobweb of connection that will catch what we need and let the cocoon that we have built over these months of fallow time unravel and fall away and reveal whatever it is that will happen.  Some of us could use some of our outer layers to melt away like snow, as the carbs and comfort of the past seem to linger while there is something new waiting to find life in us.  Others of us need to connect with those who can spark the life of hope and the possibility that underneath the frozen tundra, there is a hybrid waiting to be grafted from  opposites into the civil discourse of deciding that we can make something new happen instead of regurgitating the same old solutions that don’t work.  And still others are ready to roll back their heads in a belly laugh that cures the woes and is contagious in its promise.
It’s Lent — the kind that begins on VaLENTines  Day…with love at the center of it.
Not the soft kind of love that is sugar-coated in red boxes of satin
But the real stuff of love where truth is told and it’s feedback, not failure.
The kind of love that has room for human imperfection and lets humor find a cavity in the middle of the mess of life.
It’s Lent-love…like the year I gave up beets for Lent and my ‘beloved’ siblings neglected to remind me that whatever you gave up for Lent you got on Sunday in heaping qualities…(now, really you guys– and don’t think I’ve forgotten….)
Lent Love is the real stuff of life — the dull and the thrilling and the real-ness of living
It all starts today with a few ashes to help us remember 
that it’s all a gift and we get it one day at a time
It starts with today and putting aside what gets in our way
and picking up what works better
It begins with seeing the clutter and chaos
and then doing something about it
and then not filling up the space again
So that something new can grow there
in the  VaLENTines heart that has room
Welcome to these days and words and images we will share
the path we walk
the light that shows up when we need it
and the community we create
right now
right here
“Be The Light”
Happy VaLENTines Day
Lent it be your Path