Saturday, March 31, 2012

Fasting during Lent

Before Ash Wednesday I decided that as part of my Lenten practice I would eat only simple food during the day - and then join my family for the usual evening meal.

I have managed to keep up with this practice for most of Lent, eating either dry bread or plain couscous, rice or bulgur wheat - and it has been an interesting journey.

There were a number of thoughts and feelings going on inside me.
First there were feelings of how boring it was to eat such plain food. No fun, no excitement, very limited variety.
Then came the feeling of slight guilt - because the food I was complaining about was perfectly good and nourishing, and many people across the world have nothing and would LOVE to have food such as this on a daily basis!
Then came the awareness that I was actually provided for. I never went hungry. However simple the food was, it sustained me perfectly.
And more recently I have started to find that this simple food is actually a blessing. I don't have to think whether I want cheese or ham, whether we have run out of jam or whether the shop does not stock my favourite sandwich variety ... I simply grab a pitta bread and go. In some strange way this simplicity has made my life easier and enriched me!

Do I look forward to the evening meal? Oh yes, I do!
This Lenten fast has given me an appreciation for the wonderful food that we have readily available. It is not something I should take for granted.

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