I read a great Facebook post the other day. The man who spoke announced that his Lenten discipline was to fast from political wrangling on Facebook. He seemed a bit anxious about it and made some rumblings about loopholes; when and what and if happened he allowed that he might have to break the fast. But overall, he seemed pretty interested in what he would discover about himself.
Fasting is like that. So often we hear the word and feel the clutch of wants gone unsoothed and we flinch and run. Fasting is actually a more spacious thing than that.
When we fast, we make more space for the Holy to sound. Each of us has things that we fill ourselves with in order to dodge. We do or distract in order to distance ourselves from the gnaw of anxiety that feels like constant companion.
The Holy calls us to “be still and know” that God is God and we are not.
Our world calls us to zoom around stuffing our lives full of busy. Distractions make other people rich.
So this Lenten season, what is it you might fast from? For the Facebook wise man, it is the hurling of muck via electronic community. For others, it might be refraining from buying anything new.
The first step is to still ourselves long enough to ask the question: what is it that I take up as my dodge of choice? How can I let go of that behavior in order to be more available to God?
What sorts of learnings are in store?
It’s a journey, this spiritual season called “Lent”. We journey in sacred company. Perhaps it is time to be sure that we are present and open to the learnings along the way.