Another entry in the Lent diary from my friend who is fasting from food during this season:
Wednesday, February 28, 2018 Day 15 of Lent
Prayer and fasting are a bit of a struggle today. I’m not sure what it is. I am hungry and a bit fatigued. My focus is lacking. My back is bothering me. The issue with my back has been difficult, not only physically with the pain and how that limits what I can do, but emotionally it is hard because I get frustrated and wonder if and when it will end. I have great sympathy for folks who have had chronic pain for years. You cannot underestimate the toll that takes on your emotional self. Anyway, I have hunger pangs now and getting into prayer today was more difficult.
During my scripture reading, one of the assigned readings was from Mark 4 – the parable of the sower and seeds. The third soil was full of thorns. People hear the word, but “the cares of the world and the lure of wealth, and the desire for other things come in and choke the word, and it yields nothing.” Of course, we want our hearts to be the good soil, but the traps of this third soil got me today. How many of us can say we are not distracted by the cares of the world? You don’t have to idolize money to be pulled away by the lure of wealth. I mean, how much have I thought about personal finances, will I have enough for retirement or that sort of thing? I don’t have to chase the new cars and boats to struggle with the ‘desire for other things.’ What takes my attention? The results of this third soil and thorns are “it yields nothing.”
Fasting is challenging because as this one thing is stripped away from me, it’s like the whole house of cards comes tumbling down, and I realize how tied in to this world I am.