Lent and the Art of Fasting

Personal revival occurs because fasting is an act of humility—Bill Bright
I like the season of Lent as much as I like the season of Advent—both are full of hope and expectation, and the promise of good things to come. Regardless of whether you share the religious sentiments attached to these two seasons, I think they can be meaningful in helping you reframe your priorities. During Lent, people typically fast, or give something up, to acknowledge a larger hope, dream, or goal. It’s a declaration that what you want is worth a personal sacrifice. As the quote above indicates, that takes some humility. It’s like the opposite of self-entitlement, and I think most of us could use a dose of that from time to time (myself most certainly included).
Fasts take many forms—fasting from a particular food is possibly the most common, but you can also do a media fast, a fast from negative self-talk, or a fast of discipline with your time and energy. I’ve done many variations of these themes over my lifetime, and this year I’m trying to be more disciplined with my time and energy in the areas of writing and playing my guitar. This is definitely an echo of my New Year’s hopes, but it’s also a declaration that these things are (still!) important to me, and they are worth the sacrifice of my time. I also want to acknowledge the gifts and opportunities I’ve been given, and demonstrate (to myself, to God) that I will be a good steward of them.
Are you fasting this year? There’s solidarity (and accountability) in numbers—leave a comment or send me a message if you’d like to join with me in this season of Lent.
Posted in goals, hope, inspiration, priorities, resolutions, writing

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