Friday, March 3, 2017

"Hunger stays till it's fed"

Ah, the first Friday of Lent. The first obligatory meatless day of the year. A penitential Friday to be sure. Our traditio? Prefab Sprout's song "Appetite" seems like a perfect fit.

St. Olaf Parish Bountiful, Utah, by Deacon Scott Dodge, 25 February 2017


At least in some measure, Lent is about tempering our bodily appetites. I know that for me, this holy season includes efforts to squelch the signal to noise ratio between my appetites and what it is that I really desire. Another metaphor might be, attempting to create some space in order to give the Spirit room to work. In order to realize my deepest desire, I need to change, to be converted, that is, repent, so I can fully live the life I was reborn to live when I was baptized. Christian life is redeemed life. Letting myself be set aright is part of God's setting the world aright. As Tolstoy wrote in his pamphlet "Three Methods of Reform"-
There can be only one permanent revolution — a moral one; the regeneration of the inner man. How is this revolution to take place? Nobody knows how it will take place in humanity, but every man feels it clearly in himself. And yet in our world everybody thinks of changing humanity, and nobody thinks of changing himself
Appetites are not bad in and of themselves. Where we would be without them? Without appetites, life could neither be sustained nor perpetuated. It certainly wouldn't be enjoyed. It does us good, however, not to always and immediately indulge them, not just during Lent, but all the time.

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