This week was the first meeting of our “7 – A Mutiny Against Excess” Bible study & I am so excited for the opportunity to take this journey again with another group of people. I am probably more excited this year because after reading the book two years ago and then participating in the study last year, I am learning new ways to focus my life energy and resources on Christ.
I feel Lent is such an appropriate time to participate in this fast, for obvious reasons. What I hope to make clear to all those reading this, is that merely fasting is not enough to bring us closer to Christ. It is what we put in that empty space, it is what we give to others in place of what we give ourselves.
It is so simple for us to wake up each day, pray before meals, attend church as a family and deposit a little money in the offering plate as it goes by. Now, is that really what we think God is asking of us? Is that living our faith on purpose?
I found last year when I participated in this “mutiny against excess experiment” that the smallest choices we make throughout our days, lead us to the greatest opportunities to serve our God and to guide others to him.
This fast is about turning our hearts to God & choosing to make our faith the main focus in our lives, trusting God to nurture us and to help open our eyes to the impact we can have on the world around us. If we live our lives on purpose, much of the unnecessary yuck goes away and makes room for our love of Christ and service to others.
Imagine for a moment that your mortgage is completely paid off, you have no debt! What freedom would that bring to your life? What would you do with that money? What would you buy?
Now, imagine if you took that same money and spent it with purpose and justice in mind. What if you chose not to buy products from companies that enslave others? What if you chose to eat food that was grown, harvested and prepared in environmentally and ethically righteous ways?
Once we see that tolerance is the same as approval we start to realize that the little choices we make have a profound impact. First, it impacts our own soul, then the souls of those we share it with and then on those companies that are doing an injustice to our world. If we choose to turn our backs on media that promotes promiscuity, hate, lust, vengeance and violence eventually we can evoke a change in what is made available to our young families. If we stop supporting the programs and businesses whose products and activities are detrimental to our faith lives and our families as a whole they will eventually diminish. None of these things will improve without a conscious effort on our part.
Each day we are given the same set of seconds to live our lives, never knowing when our last will come. Don’t waste one more of these precious seconds on treasures of this world. Stand up for your faith, live today with purpose and show God that following Jesus is how you find your treasure. The grace and love of sharing the gospel with others is truly the greatest treasure to be shared.
Make a choice to fast this Lent and in the place of what you leave behind, put service and faith and justice.