Thursday, February 15, 2018

Patience and Hope: Our Journey to Easter

After over five decades on God's Earth, contemplating Lent can be an exercise in creativity.  What to give up this year?  Coffee, tortilla chips, wine, cheese .. done them all.  Or in reverse, what can I do more of this year?  Volunteer at the food bank, sing in the church choir, start resistance training at the gym ... check those off (with varying degrees of success!)

So, recently, I was pleasantly surprised to discover another perspective - a list of behavioral habits that could be subject to fasting.  But best of all, the list presented the opposite behavior as something to FEAST ON.    For those of us who prefer positive action rather than avoiding a negative, this idea struck me like a lightning bolt, and I feel compelled to share it, together with various photos from the last 12 months.  I hope you find something in it that can inspire you through the 40 days of our journey toward a blessed Easter!

Imagine ... Peace and Unity
By William Arthur Ward (American author, teacher and pastor, 1921 - 1994)

Fast from judging others; feast on the Christ dwelling in them.
Fast from emphasis on differences; feast on the unity of life.

Fast from words that pollute; feast on phrases that purify.
Fast from discontent; feast on gratitude.
Big Mountain Jesus
In 1949, the Big Mountain resort hosted the U.S. Ski Championships
and many of the competitors were WWII veterans from the Army's
10th Mountain Division.  They teamed up with the local Knights
of Columbus to commission the statue in memory of their
fallen comrades.

Fast from worry; feast on divine order.
Fast from complaining; feast on appreciation.

Mid-term care packages for #1 Son and his girlfriend

Fast from unrelenting pressures; feast on unceasing prayer.
Fast from negatives; feast on affirmatives.

Fast from hostility; feast on non-resistance.
Fast from apparent darkness; feast on the reality of light.
Grand Cayman Sunset, March 2017

With my Mom at the 
Huckleberry Festival
Fast from bitterness; feast on forgiveness.
Fast from thoughts of illness; feast on the healing power of God.

Fast from self-concern; feast on compassion for others.
Fast from anger; feast on patience.
                                              (Columbian ground squirrel at Logan Pass
                                                in Glacier National Park; you'll hear my
                                                voice and that of my Mom)

Fast from personal anxiety; feast on eternal truth.
Fast from pessimism; feast on optimism.
Scott Kelly spent a year aboard the International Space
Station: "There is a lesson here ... about risk and
resilience, about endurance and trying again."

Streep and Hanks do it again in this
poignant story about women in
leadership roles and the importance
of the free press in our society
Fast from facts that depress; feast on verities that uplift.
Fast from discouragements; feast on hope.

Fast from thoughts that weaken; feast on promises that inspire.
Fast from lethargy; feast on enthusiasm.

Snow shoeing Montana style - with temps ranging from -3F to 8F - 
'cause that's just what Montanans do on Sunday afternoons!

Fast from idle gossip; feast on purposeful silence.
Fast from problems that overwhelm; feast on prayer that undergirds.
Fast from shadows of sorrow; feast on the sunlight of serenity.
View of Glacier National Park from summit of Big Mountain

(During Lent, I am working on patience and hope, while embracing meals free of meat and fish.)

Linking to:

All Seasons

Mosaic Monday

Saturday's Critters

Skywatch Friday


  1. ...patience is a tough one for me.

  2. Some great thoughts here, and love the photos of Grand Cayman sunset and Big Mountain sky!!

  3. Good things to focus on. Love that photo of you and your mom at the Huckleberry Festival. I'm trying to dig deeper into God's Truth in Jesus and the Bible for Lent. Beautiful photos throughout.

  4. We all could work on the fasting and feasting. Lord knows there are so many facts that could depress. Worry and divine order are proving hard for me right now. Purposeful silence is where I feel I need to be for so many reasons.

  5. Oops! Forgot to say how cute the squirrel video is. Such a brave little fella.

  6. Wonderful thoughts and ideas! I like this version of fasting. I will take all your ideas and use them. :) Lots of snow down here. I am loving it! Kit

  7. Hello, wonderful ides for fasting and feasting. The ground squirrel is cute. The sunset is gorgeous! I love the view of Glacier NP. Great post and I enjoyed the photos. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Thanks so much for your comment and visit. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

  8. the worry/divine order isn't clear. I worry because so much has befallen me, and I pray for healing to no avail so that one seems beyond me too. I love the idea of this but am not sure how to implement it. I am worried about so much that isn't working out but how do you pretend it's all good? Your post gave me a lot to think about and that's a great thing, and I thank you. I love your blog, and get posts by email tho I don't always comment from my inbox I'm reading. LeeAnna

  9. Lots for us to consider in your post! I need to make amends this season and do more for others! Enjoy your weekend! Hugs, Diane

  10. I enjoyed this post and the positive refocus on Lent.

    I also enjoyed the little squirrel but wouldn't want to feel a bite from it either.

    Enjoy your week.

  11. What great ideas for fasting and feasting. Lent isn't observed in our church, but I have many friends who do.

    1. That is a breathtaking photo at Grand Cayman. The sailboat was in the right spot at the right time and so were you.

  12. Amazing sky shots and critters too!

    Happy Week a head to you,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  13. Beautiful photos! What a great idea to do something like this for lent. Patience is something I need to work on and it's a tough one.

  14. I love what this author wrote. Striving to change behaviors for the positive is, I think, something greater for ourselves and society. Your photos reinforce the message. Thank you for your post!

  15. Striving for virtues like patience is a great way to practice Lent - absolutely adore your photos illustrating the post.

  16. Beautiful pics for your great idea. Each pic is so special!

  17. Hi Angie
    I saw thisinspiring meditation on quite a few posts on facebook and it was attributed to the a few different people including the Pope, so it was good to see who really wrote it. I like to do positive things for Lent over giving up something. The world especially needs more acts of kindness and compassion after this week's tragic events.
    That little squirrel was trying hard to see if he could take a piece of your he did not hurt you!

  18. What a great way to brighten up your little corner of the world. We could all use some fasting from negative and detrimental things. Great post.

  19. my favorites are the gorgeous flowers and the glacier overlook :)

  20. Some lovely pictures there Angie. I do like the snow scenes, even if I don't like snow - just other people's. How interesting that you have PG Tips over there, a global brand now i guess.

  21. If everyone did these things - think of how different the world would be. Fasting from judgement, words that pollute, self involvement.... I can’t help but think we would live in a more harmonious society!

  22. Hello Angie,
    What gorgeous photos! Grand Cayman and the view of glacier are stunning!Such a cute ground squirrel!
    Happy Monday to you.

  23. i love the outdoors and so appreciated all of your images!!

    if everyone followed your lead, (what great thoughts) what a wonderful world it would be....

  24. Great inspiration post for Lent! It is good to fast on the things that you have mentioned e.g. judging, negative thoughts, etc.

  25. What an uplifting and inspiring post! Thank you! I especially like "Fast from problems that overwhelm; feast on prayer that undergirds" thought they all spoke to me! Thank you so very much!

  26. Powerful and inspiring post. Wonderful! I am trying to remove one thing from my closet or around the house every day of Lent. Then I will have a full bag or box (or both) to donate. I'm so bad at decluttering, I hope this will get me started. Happy Monday!

  27. Can see my comment from yesterday did not come through:( Good I checked. I have never seen a fast as something "witholding" (although my stomach is protesting), but as my effort to have a better relationship with God. Thank you for sharing your experiences with Lent for All Seasons:) Have a great Lent week!

  28. I really like the emphasis on the positive! Brilliant. Thanks for sharing.

  29. Very good reminders, though very difficult to follow.

  30. There is much to ponder on in your post. Thank you.

  31. Thank you for this. Life would be heaven on earth if humanity could only adhere to all the wonderful words of “fasting” you’ve listed. :)

  32. Thank you for this, Angie. I had seen it on Facebook, but read it again now, with your beautiful photos interspersed among the words. Lots to think about.

  33. National Park wintry shot is awesome!

    Happy Week to you,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  34. Such a positive message, and so beautifully illustrated!

  35. Excellent post! I love the positivity.

  36. What an uplifting read and your photos of Montana are glorious!

  37. Oh I love this and I am going to put some of them into practice this season.

  38. Wonderful life lessons, not just for Lent! Gorgeous photo of Grand Cayman
    Hope you have a great weekend!

  39. If I could fast from worry, I'd do that year round :-)

  40. This is just wonderful and I hope that you don't mind that I looked up your poem that you shared and I am thinking about posting it on my Facebook page. I can learn from this and many others as well. Just to even select a few of the thoughts would be beneficial. Thank you so much for sharing and your images that you posted along with the poem is wonderful~


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