Fat Tuesday was a booming success at the Swager household! We ate paczkis, we went out to dinner, we polished off the Valentine's Day candy, and started our preparations for Lent. We didn't have a parade, or throw beads, but we celebrated Mardi Gras in our own frozen, Michigander way.
Meanwhile, hundreds of miles away, things went wrong. The people in Haiti will spend the next three days weeping and mourning for the 16 people who died in a tragic Carnival float accident. It would appear that the float hit a low power line. As the sparks began to fly, people panicked and got trampled. This Haitian Carnival Tragedy breaks my heart. It brought a celebrating people to their knees.
Maybe that's what we needed today. Not the death of revelers, but the dropping to our knees.
Mardi Gras really is only important in that it precedes Ash Wednesday. It's the last day before everything changes.
Everything is about to get stark and real. We're about to take a good hard look at our choices and our lives, and the things that really matter to us. We'll strip away the things that distract us. We spend time in conversation and contemplation about our relationship with the one who knows us better than anyone else: Our very Creator. Then, when we've spent time un-building the walls we've erected between us and the Lover of our Souls, we'll walk through the Passion and Crucifixion of our Lord and Savior. We'll remember the pain he went through for us, and rejoice at his Resurrection.
We will mourn. The time is fitting for it. But there will come a time to celebrate again.
I will be posting Love letters to my Creator on my "Lent to Me" blog during Lent. I hope following me will bless you.
And may God's comfort and Mercy be with those in Haiti, and everywhere that people are in mourning.