" Thou art dust."
Dust. Such was our origin, and death our inevitable end; death which shall part us from all earthly things. Nature shrinks from the thought, and yet what is death in itself compared with what may follow it ?
" As the tree falleth, so shall it lie."
Is pride still rampant in you ? Can you be puffed up when you know you are but dust ?
" Unto dust shalt thou return."
Is not our whole nature corrupt ?
Look into yourself; what selfishness,
meanness, and baseness do you not find;
what blemishes even in your good actions.
We know not when we shall die.
Every day of our lives may have no morrow.
Are you ready for the call ?
" Thou art dust, and unto dust shalt thou return."
Being then but dust, we can only live by union with Jesus Christ. If we live a supernatural life with Him we shall be safe.
Go straight, then, to Jesus, in your thoughts, words, and actions. Do all for Him and His love. All that is not for Him is but dust.
Link (here) to this meditation on Ash Wednesday is found in a book entitled, Short Meditations according to the Ignatian Method revised by a Jesuit Father.