I was going to go to someone else's morning or afternoon Ash Wednesday service today before I led our own at 7pm. But life got in the way and I ran out of time.
One thing I have noticed in the last few years is that I leave our own service with my forehead clean. Somehow that just doesn't seem right, but there is no one else on staff to go through the ritual with me on the receiving end and the whole thing is too new for this congregation to ask even one of the Elders to help me out.
Tonight about an hour before our own worship service I looked into a mirror and said the words, "Remember you are dust and to dust you shall return," and placed the ashes on my own forehead in the sign of a cross.
Now maybe this wasn't appropriate. I would never serve myself communion. But I will tell you the words had a whole new meaning for me as I said them while looking into my own eyes.