I see two basic truths on this Valentine Day:
- Lent lasts 40 days.
- People long to be whole.
HH and I are doing The Whole 40 during Lent (and this is the first and last time I will talk about that) because certain foods are messing with us at this point in our chronological lives and I will especially need Jesus to help me with giving up sugar. And pasta. And cheese. We are trying 40 days instead of 30 because . . . Lent. Again, I will need this to be a spiritual practice. And I may not succeed.
Giving up things for Lent or for any season was not something I did growing up. Simply giving up – yes, sometimes I have been tempted to do that. But giving up certain foods seems harder for the granddaughter of dairy farmers and bakers.
It’s also hard to give up greed, self-centeredness, gossip, and other daily ways of life that keep us from being whole. But this is the season to try.
The focus is not supposed to be on ourselves (and how much I want a piece of pizza.) The focus is supposed to be on those who are not loved nearly enough who are hungry for food and peace and dignity.
We all want to be whole. I’m trying it in a new way for the next 40 days.