The confirmands looked serious as they read scripture, imposed ashes, and offered bread and cup to the congregation,
And there were babies crying and toddlers talking loudly,
And the ashes got all over everywhere, and the bowls were slippery with the glycerine we smeared on our fingertips to keep the ashes from sticking to our hands;
And the gluten-free bread crumbled into the chalice as we dipped big chunks of it, then handed them to congregants who seemed surprised to receive so much;
And the children came with their parents, eager eyes shining, and hands outstretched to receive the bread, dipped in grape juice just for them;
And the people had to hold hymnbooks and follow the printed order of worship, because there was no slide show projecting the words of each song on the wall;
And they didn’t seem to mind.
And we confessed our sin,
And we were pardoned.
With ashes everywhere, and bread crumbs on the floor,
And grape juice dripping down our fingers,
We accepted Christ’s body and blood, broken and shed for us.
And we remembered that following Jesus is messy business.