Sunday, March 8, 2015

Eine Gute Woche!

"A guten voch!" is what Mirka's sister Devory shouts after Mirka and Rochel when they leave her apartment after spending Shabbos there in Barry Deutsch's Hereville: How Mirka Met a Meteorite. (Seriously, you gotta read these books! They're so great!) It basically means "have a good week", and I say it to you after celebrating a ... well ... okay Sabbath here in Tejas.

My vision of Sabbath conceivably lasts too long: It's supposed to take up all of Saturday and end after church Sunday morning. If you couldn't tell from the picture I posted Friday night, it sort of starts Friday night (or afternoon if Chris is working) with the bread, fruit, and cheese meal I showed you. However, I'm still free to get the Facebook out of my system until midnight.

But sometimes the best laid plans go awry. My sore throat continues to worsen, and Chris had a day at work that was downright disturbing (and no, I can't go into details), so I ended up on the phone with my mom last night, effectively ending Sabbath. And here I am now, on the computer before I've said Morning Prayer or gone to church, which I wouldn't do anyway because of my blasted throat. Insomnia's just a hoot. Where would I be without it? Not up at 4AM writing blog posts, that's for certain!

We're still sorting this out, but the last two weeks of Sabbath were substantially better than this one. I don't know why. I still prayed and read and ate simple meals and rested, but it lacked the revolutionary feel of that first week. I still maintain that the best part of Sabbath is getting away from Facebook for one measly day, so that was a success. But rather than bore you with the details of why I don't think it worked (my med change? lack of desire to read? I don't know), here's something that caught my attention last week:

Fridays are hungry days. Most weeks I fast after dinner on Thursday until
dinner on Friday. I fast because I practice a rule of life that requires it. I've
found no better practice to remind me of the suffering of the hungry and
my need to live within the limits of simplicity. Fasting is a way of making room--room for God, space to help us understand the cravings that driveus to want more than enough. When time allows it, I bake bread on my hungry Fridays. I use a recipe
that will require my time and attention for the whole day and yields
two loaves. With one loaf I break my fast, savoring the flavors of this
sacramental food. I give the second loaf away to a neighbor, a friend
or to someone in need. This practice serves as a reminder that there is
always enough if we live within our limits. By going hungry for one
day each week, I can make room in my life to answer Isaiah's call to fast.
In hungering in solidarity and sharing bread with the hungry, I feel
a partnership in God's work of loosening the bonds of injustice.
- Ragan Sutterfield

That's from the Episcopal Relief & Development's Lenten meditations. They've been a joyful read, and I really liked the idea behind "hungry Fridays". That said, I've been reluctant to fast recently because of my crazy insulin levels. But reading this meditation, it occurred to me that there are people who don't regularly get a meal who have diabetes. If I feel discomfort over having nothing just because my insulin's high ... what's worse? So I'll at least try hungry Fridays, adding it to the whole calendar of the Sabbath weekend. And maybe one day I'll make it to church, too!

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