01 Mar 2012 3 Comments
With the start of Lent last week, I was going to fast from meat and desserts. But the first day of Lent, I was on Twitter and saw Compassion International ask “could you eat like your sponsored child for 40 days?” That really made me stop and think. I’ve mentioned on here before that I sponsor a girl in Kenya through Compassion and I was intrigued by this challenge. There was a link to Pastor Chris Seay’s website about how new book called A Place at the Table, which outlines this challenge of eating like a child in poverty for 40 days. I felt like this was something I was really interested in and decided to participate. So the second day of Lent I started eating like a child in poverty eats.
What do you eat?
I am eating rice, bananas, peas, and apples. Seem like an odd food choice? Let me explain. Many children living in poverty in the world live mainly off of rice, beans, and whatever fresh fruits/veggies are available to them. When I was in Haiti, some of the kids I came in contact with ate bananas for pretty much every meal. I don’t like beans, so I substituted them for peas and added apples because I didn’t know what other fruit/veggie to add. I don’t feel like the point of this fast is to get hung up on exactly what foods you choose. Rather it is a time to eat a few simple, basic food in order to start to try understand what children in poverty eat and how they live.
Why am I doing this?
I went on a mission trip to Haiti last summer and for the first time saw what true poverty is. The kids I spent time with were often hungry and malnourished. I have never been in a situation where food was not available to me and, not only that, but I have so much food available to me, so many options, that I often focus large portions of my day on it. I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing (obviously I love cooking/baking or I wouldn’t have this site), but I think it is also valuable to gain some perspective about how people in other countries often live. Since I have been on this fast, I have thought about the girl I sponsor every single day. I have thought about the children in third world countries every single day. And that is something that is so important because these starving people are often so easy to put out of our minds.
I bought the book A Place at the Table and am doing the daily readings. I would encourage any of you who are interested in this fast to pray about it. It’s not too late to start up now and you don’t have to do it for Lent you can do it any time you feel called to :) I will be posting more details about my experience later :)
Have a wonderful week!