Monthly FLAME

March 2019 


Did you ever notice how much the word LENT sounds like the word LINT?  I got a couple of pull-overs at Christmas, and boy are they ever lint-magnets.  Lint is that stuff that gets stuck to your clothes and it takes half of a forever to get it off.  And it keeps wanting to cling onto you again.

Lent is the season of the church year where you take time for self-examination to see what things have kind of globbed onto you that you can’t seem to shake off.  How many times have you given up chocolate or some other less-than-fully nutritious food and come the next Lent, there it is again visible on your waistline? In food circles, this might be called a YO-YO DIET.  You let it go, but it just keeps coming back.

You say you want to get rid of that habit, but you just have to keep a string attached, just in case you might need it some time to help you deal with that extra stress in your life.  Of course, you know that it won’t really ever do the job, but it makes you feel better for a minute.

My organic brother called me from Indonesia last week and told me the changes he was making in his diet.  I know it made sense to him, but I was astounded and confused, and I lived in Berkeley for several years! My suggestion is to follow the KISS approach:  Keep it simple stupid. If you are dieting, take out a few things that are your greatest downfall. Add a few foods that are really nutritious and enjoyable to you.  Then, after Easter expand a little at a time. Let it slowly ease into a life-style change.

If you want to change the way you act, pick a couple of things you know get you into trouble, like not counting  your hours or having a regular bedtime, and find a set time to do those things. You will probably find that that extra time spent will give you a lot more time for fun and helpful things that benefit you more than the wasteful things you drift into.

Jesus took time to go pray and meditate.  That wasn’t just to go and fall apart after exhausting ministry time.  That was more his disciples MO. Jesus was focusing and strategizing, while still leaving time for interruptions.  Lent was not a season in Jesus’ life. It was a regular way that Jesus was prepared to face his daily challenges. Now if I could only invent a Lent brush!