23 February 2012

Lenten Meditation

And Jesus answered them, "Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have good news brought to them.  And blessed is anyone who takes no offense at me." Luke 7:22-23

Hearing Jesus talk about his healing work reminds me of the extravagant nature of his ministry.  Jesus is not doing anything in small measure.  This is not a man who holds anything back.  I don't imagine he ever looked at the task in front of him and said, "The job is so huge, I don't know where to start--maybe I'll just go back to bed."  I have.

Yet I am uplifted by the knowledge that I am not alone in making Jesus' vision of the world a reality today.  With my brothers and sisters in the body of Christ, we can continue in Jesus' healing work, so that one day we can say: "Go, tell the others what you have seen: HIV/AIDS is cured, the children's bellies are full, the mothers survive childbirth, parents can provide for their children."

Please God, let me share in your extravagant vision!

-Margaret Trezevant

This meditation, taken from the 2012 Lenten Meditations provided by Episcopal Relief and Development, really spoke to my heart this morning.  How often do I quit things before I even begin, letting the task build up like an insurmountable object before me?  Too often.  In fact, I had that thought yesterday, in the Ash Wednesday service of all places!  Self-examination and repentance, prayer, fasting, and self-denial, reading and meditating on God's holy Word.  How am I supposed to add all of that to my already busy day?  How selfish of me.

17 February 2012

Lenten Discipline: Gluten- and Dairy-free diet

This Lent, Spencer and I have decided on an elimination diet.  We will be going gluten- and dairy-free for 40 days.  The main purpose is to test for gluten sensitivity and heal any digestive disorders we may have.  We are loosely following the "rules" of the GAPS diet and The UltraMind Solution (pdf links here and here) and are looking to eat real, whole foods instead of relying on gluten-free substitutes.  We've done a pretty good job eliminating processed foods from our diet, and we'd like to keep it that way.  To that end, we'd appreciate any recipes or meal suggestions you may have, especially for breakfast and lunch.

I recently ordered two books on following a raw foods diet.  I was hoping it would have some new and different ideas, since I know they follow a gluten- and dairy-free concept.  Unfortunately, 90% of the recipes require the use of a dehydrator, which I don't have.  I know that I can use my oven on a very low setting instead, but that would require the oven to be on for 8 hours at a time, and I'm just not willing to do that.  So frustrating!

Do you have a Lenten discipline?