Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Join Me: A Three Day, Third World Fast
I'm spoiled. In the United States most of us enjoy three meals a day, and snacks in between, and never give a thought to how this alone sets us apart from nearly every other person on the planet.
For example, if I eat chicken for lunch I don't want it for dinner, and if I eat scrambled eggs for breakfast I sure don't want that for lunch and dinner too.
But for most of the planet, this is reality. If they have three meals a day at all, (the lucky ones are happy to eat once per day), it’s usually the same thing; rice or beans.
Imagine eating rice for breakfast, rice for lunch, and then rice again for dinner. Now imagine eating that way for a week, or a month, or a year. Try your entire life.
In order to experience a taste of this for myself, I’ve decided to spend just three days eating nothing but rice and lentils for each and every meal. Here’s what I hope to accomplish:
*First, to experience a bit of solidarity with my brothers and sisters around the world who survive on one simple food source each and every day.
*Second, to strengthen my appreciation for how rich I really am to enjoy such an endless variety of food while others depend on so little.
*Third, to fast from my extravagance and spend time in prayer for those around the world, and even here in America, who cannot afford to take food for granted the way I do.
Want to join me? I’ll start on Monday morning of this coming week (October 31st) eating only rice or lentils (for protein) for every meal through my dinner on the evening of November 2nd. I will not snack on treats or chips at work or at home between meals. I will only drink water or coffee (can’t quite quit that one yet), and I will spend time in prayer for those who are suffering for food around the world and in my own community. (I'll also take vitamins during these 3 days).
If you do join me, I’d love to hear your experiences before, during and afterwards. Please share what God teaches you in this experience of solidarity with the poor.
If those dates don't work for you for whatever reason, please consider taking another group of days and trying this.
God's Idea of Fasting:
"Is such the fast that I choose, only a day for a person to humble himself?
Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry
and bring the homeless poor into your house;
when you see the naked, to cover him,
and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?
Then shall your light break forth like the dawn,
and your healing shall spring up speedily;
your righteousness shall go before you;
the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard.
Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer;
you shall cry, and he will say, ‘Here I am.’"
(Isaiah 58:5-9 ESV)