30 Days

I've been seeing the picture to the right on people's blogs for the past few days. You can click on the picture to learn more about the Intent of Tonia Sparrow, the woman who presented an invitation to her readers to try a fast from unnecessary spending.

My own participation in this challenge is less a choice and more a requirement. Money is going to be tight for the next few years, as I wend my way through seminary, and it seems far better to begin my heightened budget-consciousness with a thoughtful fast rather than an anxious mind. So, for the next month, I will not buy anything that is not required of me. (Now I have to decide whether I really need to have a hot pot to make myself hot tea and oatmeal in the morning since I'm on the 15 meal plan at PTS.)

From Tonia:

For 30 days, my family will buy nothing except our basic necessities. No clothes or books. No movies, no trips to the ice cream parlor. No paper, or pictures, or magazines. No fancy hair gel or take-and-bake pizza. Lattes? Nope. Nothing except what it takes to live. During that month, I will journal our experiences, and blog my thoughts about poverty and hunger and our response to those issues. I'd like to try and identify with some of the "least" (economically) of the world...

The goal of this month-long fast is to break the grip of materialism in our hearts and minds. We want to live in gratitude, not discontent; and we want to live with awareness of the great responsibility our affluence has laid on our shoulders.

I encourage you to pray about participating in this challenge. For those of you who are interested, take the next two weeks to pray about the parameters. Decide as a family what are your necessities and what you will give up. You can participate as much or as little as you feel led.

Tonia answered some of her critics here. I know this is short notice, but I would encourage all my readers to try this fast on for size and see what God does in your heart and life. Maybe for you it will just be giving up Starbucks or choosing the library over Amazon.com. Let me know if you choose to participate and spread the word!
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