Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Prayer Answered - A Lenten Fasting Plan

Earlier today, I posted a blog in which I wondered how I could "vivify/enliven" my language. I decided to pray and think about it.

While slumping on the couch, with my oldest daughter sickly coughing in my lap, and my youngest playing her recorder, I considered Lent, fasting, and what I need to give up to re-focus my thoughts on the Lord and His plan for my life and my writing.

Instantly, it came to me. I knew exactly what I need to give up. The thought made me gulp with near panic. That near panic seemed like an affirmation. I asked my family if they thought I could give (gulp) "IT" up, and they laughed, snickered, chuckled, rolled, and winked at each other with delight.

I prayed. I thought, "God, you know if this is from you, I'll do it. But if it's not, there are so many ways I could continue doing that activity and serve you, especially during Lent." Ha. That may not be how God really answered, but I felt pretty foolish trying to justify an idol of distraction to the Creator of the Universe.

Realizing that I haven't been using this particular "idol" for much other than my own distraction, and not really for any loving service to the Lord, or at least not often, I also realized something else. I need to prove to myself that I can give "it" up for Lent.

I mean, really, how hard can it be?

During Lent, each Sunday is like a "mini" Easter filled with grace, and on each of those Sundays I can indulge in whatever I'm fasting from for Lent. So, from tomorrow through Easter, I'll have six Sundays to indulge.

So, what will I be fasting from?
If I make it public, you all be able to rebuke me if I fail . . . or laugh while rolling around on the floor like my family . . . but I'll tell you anyway.

I'll be fasting from facebook and my blogs.
Indulging only on Sundays.

This will be especially challenging at the beginning of March when I'll find out which March date my poem, "March Snow Hare" will be published at Every Day Poets. I hope they publish the list just one day early . . . please.

So, this is Fat Tuesday, and that's my plan for "vivifying/enlivening" my writing. Giving up my excess of writing distraction and going for the meat of my writing on a daily basis. Praying and asking God to Bless my work while fasting.

I know that many scriptures say that fasting should be done privately . . . and I've done that in the past, keeping fasts between me and my family members. However, for this one I need accountability partners. If you see me online, other than on Sundays, feel free to rebuke me, and tell me to get off.

And if you didn't know, fasting can be about anything. I've fasted from specific foods, specific types of reading, specific types of music, and even done some of those "extreme" fasts from food of all kind (only for 24 hours). It can also be done anytime, even though Lent is traditionally a good time to fast, as one of the Lenten disciplines. Fasting can bring spiritual, mental, emotional and physical health.

Think about it, pray about it, and let me know if you are fasting.
Just remember I can't answer comments until Sunday.

1 comment:

Julie Dao said...

I think you have a lot of willpower for wanting to "unplug" for Lent! Good for you!

I have an award for you at my blog :)