the Sum of Godliness

godliness

And John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting; and they came and said to Him, “Why do John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but Your disciples do not fast?”

-Mark 2:18

What truly matters?

I’ve grappled with Lent and the idea of fasting. Fasting pops up in the Bible verses I’m called to read. Fasting pops up on my Instagram feed. It seems to be everywhere, and I grapple with it.

Although my childhood upbringing was not religious, my family recognized Lent. We gave up sugar. Every year. It was incredibly difficult, but also incredibly rewarding on Easter morning. As a child, that reward came in finally eating sugar. Devouring it. A lot of it. On Easter morning.

As an adult, I can see a greater good in giving up sugar – struggling through something difficult, treating my body as more of His temple… – but I lack the strength to do so. Or maybe the desire.

As I’m inundated with images of fasting, and feeling guilty for not giving up sugar, I ask myself, “What truly matters?”

And, I answer, always, “People. People matter.”

Maybe I’m being called to see people, without judgment, as God sees them.

Maybe I’m called to value them. To hear them. To listen. With eyes, ears and heart wide open.

I’m slow to this practice of fasting, but think maybe I’m on the right track. The track that is right for me.

What truly matters to you?

 

 

 

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4 thoughts on “the Sum of Godliness

  1. I’ve been grappling with the idea of fasting too. I’ve given up things for Lent before but didn’t really understand it. I’ve been reading more about fasting this last couple of weeks and finally feel like I’m getting it.
    I think you’re absolutely right that you need to find the track that is right for you- to look for what God is leading you to do, even if it is different from his track from other people.

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      1. I think fasting can be done in different ways. Sometimes it is giving up food completely for a period of time. Other times it is giving up a certain type of food or something else, like TV or social media, and maybe using the time we would spend on those things to pray.
        I think the most important thing is our attitude- that it is giving up our desires to focus on God and put him first, to seek him and show our dependence on him and that we need him.
        How we do it, I think, is something we need to work out on an individual basis and do what we feel God is calling us to. SRT’s Lent plan days 8, 9 and 10 are all about fasting and their explanations have helped me understand it much better.

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