A deserted place on Ash Wednesday February 14, 2018
Ash Wednesday 2018 finds me in a deserted place alone. I decided suddenly this week to withdraw for a brief time as I entered the season of Lent. My withdrawal was even more acute then I anticipated because unexpectedly I found myself without cell phone coverage or an internet connection. It was heavenly! My all too short respite will end later today but it has been good and I took the time to re-read the words of Henry Nouwen in, Out of Solitude: Three Meditations on the Christian Life. My sole contact in 24 hours appeared fleetingly like an angel last evening, bearing these words for me that I now share with you. I shall read them every day of Lent and I commend them to you during this holy season. They are adapted from a prayer by William Arthur Ward (1921-1994) and were printed by the Scarboro Missions in 2014.
Fasting and Feasting
Lent can be more than a time of fasting. It can also be a season of feasting. A time to …
Fast from judging others; feast on Christ living in them.
Fast from emphasis on differences; feast on the unity of all life.
Fast from apparent darkness; feast on the reality of light.
Fast from thoughts of illness; feast on the healing power of God.
Fast from discontent; feast on gratitude.
Fast from anger; feast on patience.
Fast from pessimism; feast on joy.
Fast from worry; feast on trust.
Fast from guilt; feast on freedom.
Fast from complaining; feast on appreciation.
Fast from negativity; feast on affirmations.
Fast from stress; feast on self-care.
Fast from anxiety and fear; feast on faith.
Fast from hostility; feast on peace.
Fast from bitterness; feast on forgiveness.
Fast from self-concern; feast on compassion for others.
Fast from discouragement; feast on hope.
Fast from apathy; feast on enthusiasm.
Fast from suspicions; feast on truth.
Fast from idle gossip; feast on spreading good news.
Fast from words that wound; feast on words that heal.
Fast from talking; feast on listening.
Fast from thoughts that weaken; feast on promises that inspire.
Fast from problems that overwhelm us; feast on prayer.
Fast from everything that separates us from God; feast on everything that draws us to God.