ancient church, Cyprus

Ashes and Dust

Things that didn’t live up to their reputation:

  • The Ford Edsel in the 1950’s was to be an innovation in cars- sucked.
  • New Coke in the 80s was to build on Coke’s reputation- it didn’t.
  • PS3 is great! -unless you get the three rings of death… (old school, I know)
  • Facebook Games.
  • Planking.

There’s a difference between reputation and reality. Jesus, dictating the letter to the church at Sardis to the Apostle, John said:

“You have a reputation that you live, but you are DEAD.”

They were living on reputation, they were living on past accomplishments, they were living in the glory days, but had fallen asleep to living the life and doing the stuff of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

WAKE UP: Jesus says “WAKE UP!!!”…living on past accomplishments just isn’t enough. Any time we live in the past it is not a good thing, it robs us of today-good or bad. If you live in the past of the bad things that happen in life then you’ll never go forward, never heal, never explore and discover life now. The same is true for the good things: starting a business, being a star athlete in school, whatever the accomplishment; to live in the past is DEATH.

Paul speaks clearly words that the church at Sardis needed to hear and words relevant for us today in Philippians 3:13 “This ONE thing I do- forgetting what is past and move forward.” Do this and live.

Let us begin again! Saint Francis said something as he gathered the brothers around not long before his death- “Let us begin again, for up to now we have done nothing.” For Sardis, For our churches, for each of us individually, these words ring true. It is a time for us to begin again. Jesus said “repent & return to what you have received and heard.”

In ancient culture, cities kept a book with the names of all it’s citizens, when someone moved or died they would scratch the persons name out. Look at the promise Jesus gave to Sardis:

“He who overcomes will be dressed in white…and I will never erase or blot out his name from the book of life…” -Rev 3:5

Let’s not live in the past, not fall asleep, but be awake! & let us begin again; letting go of the past and moving forward! Let Ash Wednesday and the Lenten Season be a fresh start of your journey as you follow Christ.

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