I have a shallow tendency to avoid doing some things - just because everyone else IS doing them. Pitiful, I know, but I'm just not a bandwagon kind of girl. The tradition of Lent could easily have fallen into this category for me; thankfully, it didn't. Instead, the very fact that so many others practice this fast begs a sort of common fellowship that I treasure being a part of. I love participating in this pilgrimage of fasting in approach to the days set aside to remember the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus.
The dedication of regular fasting for the sake of prayer, repentance, and self-denial has the power to transform us in miraculous ways. Observing Lent is a decision we make each year, not something we feel obligated to do out of guilt or in answer to any hierarchy. There are countless church traditions that don’t seem to promote love or true worship, but this one has blessed us repeatedly.
We've rarely acknowledged "Fat Tuesday" before. The whole party/binge before a fast concept seems to taint the purpose a bit. That being said, Geoff’s fast will include giving up refined sugar and flour and he enjoyed half a chocolate bar, two mugs of cocoa, and four pieces of cinnamon/sugar toast in anticipation of the upcoming deprivation. That was just dessert.; what a man. Primarily due to our budget, but also because we just don't like animals dying for us...meat is a treat. We bought one kilo of beef in early January, froze it in small sections and I used the last of it tonight. I made Geoff "sliders," or mini-hamburgers as a surprise Fat Tuesday dinner. From scratch rolls, beef patties, caramelized onions, melted cheese...with Jamie's secret sauce (secret, because I don't remember how I made it), sliced avocado, and homemade sweet potato chips. I enjoyed the same minus bread, plus mushrooms. Happy Fat Tuesday indeed.
So, do you have any plans for fasting during this season? Some fast from food, media, entertainment; others add things like acts of service, etc. We try to choose things that would be a daily sacrifice, and therefore constant reminder (that means I can’t choose Dr. Pepper, since it’s not available here...and they call this the Promised Land?? Oh well).
We’d love to hear your ideas for celebrating this season in the comments below! One of the best parts of Lent is the community that it allows. This isn't about making a show of the fasting (Mat 6:16) but encouraging each other for the glory of GOD. What are your ideas, thoughts?