Feb. 27, 2016

Lent: Ice Cream or Attitude...

“It is obvious that God is looking at the heart when sacrifices are given to Him.

He takes no delight in those who give up things for Lent and then act like

it’s such a struggle to perform what they said they wanted to do for him.”

Monica Johnson

I don’t know about you, but the idea of giving up something for 40 days and then the minute Easter comes, diving right back into it, leaves me kind of “meh.” One year I gave up daytime TV. Then went right back to it the day after Easter. Did I fill that time with devout prayer and good works? No. I talked on the phone more. One year our pastor gave up radio in the car for Lent and about lost his mind. Chocolate, coffee, ice cream. Seriously! Does that make any kind of impact on ourselves or the world at large? Not so much.

As Charles Swindoll says, “I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.” My friend, Linda Hardin, who is Director of Single Adult, Women’s and Young Adult Ministries for the Nazarene Church came across the following which was part of the church bulletin at Las Vegas First Church of the Nazarene on Valentine’s Day. I like this a lot and think you will, too... Yep, attitudes..

Fast From and Feast On – Lenten Meditation

William Arthur Ward

Fast from judging others; Feast on Christ dwelling in them.

Fast from emphasis on differences; Feast on the unity of 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 words that pollute; Feast on phrases that purify.

Fast from discontent; Feast on gratitude.

Fast from anger; Feast on patience.

Fast from pessimism; Feast on optimism.

Fast from worry; Feast on divine order.

Fast from complaining; Feast on appreciation.

Fast from negatives; Feast on affirmatives.

Fast from unrelenting pressures; Feast on unceasing prayer.

Fast from hostility; Feast on non-resistance.

Fast from bitterness; Feast on forgiveness.

Fast from self-concern; Feast on compassion for others.

Fast from personal anxiety; Feast on eternal truth.

Fast from discouragement; Feast on hope.

Fast from facts that depress; Feast on verities that uplift.

Fast from lethargy; Feast on enthusiasm.

Fast from thoughts that weaken; Feast on promises that inspire.

Fast from shadows of sorrow; Feast on serenity of sunlight.

Fast from idle gossip; Feast on purposeful silence.

Fast from problems that overwhelm; Feast on prayers that strengthen.