Day 164: Growing Up Covenant

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My husband, who is an English teacher during the school year, is home for the summer. And, I try as much as I can to give him some moments of peace and quiet at home during the first couple of weeks (plus, in the summer he works a lot on his songwriting method called ChordDice and although squeals of laughter are fun to hear, they can also be kind of distracting)! So, one day I took my boys to a McDonald’s close by to adventure in the play area… my toddler has just gotten to the point where he can navigate the entirety of the slides and mazes without my help so it’s kind of relaxing for me!

Typically when we go play at a place like McDonald’s, I’m a mooch that doesn’t buy the kids food… we just play. Yeah, yeah… I’m THAT mom. Haha! But this time I had planned to get them some pancakes and leave it at that; although, having a toddler I have learned my lesson many-a-time that he will probably not eat whatever I plan on him eating when we go somewhere. So, I always bring backups.

This particular day, I brought grapes and strawberries and a banana in case he didn’t want pancakes, but I didn’t anticipate using it… I mean, what kid would choose grapes over pancakes?!!?

But sure enough, he didn’t eat a bite of pancake but he obliterated the fruit.

And I kind of realized… he is growing up in my covenant. I didn’t have good fruit and veggies and stuff when my youngest was a toddler… his “backup” food consisted of cheerios, pop tarts (not saying that I don’t still whip that one out every once in a while when I’m desperate), graham crackers, etc. I don’t think that I ever took fruit anywhere for him! And now I’m having to struggle a bit to get him living covenant with us. It’s working, but it’s a slow process of retraining his tastebuds too.

But, seeing my youngest so easily fit himself into the covenant, I am reminded of this verse… this promise:

Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it. Proverbs 22:6

Day Forty-Six: Processed Ponderings

I have been amazed at how quickly being on a hard-core Daniel Fast has shown me that I was a bit more dependent upon processed foods than I realized. Yesterday I was a little shocked at how little I had to eat in the house. None of it was “horrible” for me per se, but there is just a sea of pretzel chips, pastas, rice, breads, cheese, eggs, etc that I kept trying to revert to at my meal and snack times.

Granted, I really need to go to the store to get some more fruit options. I find myself not wanting grapes (which will work out fine because my youngest lovvvvvvves them), but I tend to really enjoy cantaloupe, pineapple, apples, clementines, raisins, peanuts, avocados, and carrots as my “easy-to-eat” options. My favorite “cooked” thing is certainly potatoes! Yummmmmm! And I just ran out of La Madeline’s Tomato Basil soup which is deeeeelish.

I bring up all of those foods to remind myself that even though I might have felt like this was an incredible sacrifice, it’s actually quite yummy. I think I’ll even purposefully do a “Hard-Core Daniel Day” each week for the duration of my covenant just to refocus my mind off of processed “easy” foods.

But also… you know, the point of “Lenting” is to focus my mind entirely on Christ, and my mind often goes to Him fasting in the desert for 40 days.

Let me break that down for ya.

NO. FOOD. FOR. FORTY. DAYS.

I cannot even imagine that. I can’t even remember the last time I went one day without food much less FORTY. And in the hot, dry desert.

And ya know, now that I think about it. I can’t remember why He did that.

Time to read…

Okay, I’m back.

So, the Bible says in Matthew, Mark, and Luke that Jesus was led into the wilderness by the spirit.

And then I read about Elijah and Moses’s 40 Day Fasts as well (thanks to seeing it on a Wikipedia page when I was looking for a scripture reference). Elijah was sorta “forced” into it by the spirit because he was running away from Jezebel and had to walk for 40 days through the desert going to Mount Sinai. But again, he was led by the spirit.

Moses was also sorta “trapped” up on the mountain with God for 40 days while God tapped out the Ten Commandments for the covenant. Annnnnd again, led by the spirit or in his case he was told directly by God himself to stick around!

But here is what I think is cool about each of these… being led by the spirit to fast may come with 40 days of trial, but it always ends up TOTALLY RAD. Check this:

Moses – doesn’t eat for 40 days but he is chillin with God Almighty – COMES DOWN FROM THE MOUNTAIN GLOWING WITH GOD’S GLORY!!!

Elijah – doesn’t eat for 40 days while he has to walk across the desert – AND THEN GOD TALKS TO HIM DIRECTLY AND TELLS HIM JUST WHAT TO DO!!!

Jesus – doesn’t eat for 40 days in the desert – GIVES SATAN THE SMACK DOWN AND HAS ANGELS BRING HIM FOOD!

So, all of that to say, a fast might be difficult, but at the end of 40 days… God’s Power, God’s Voice And Direction, and God’s Strength To Resist Temptation… is there.

That’s about the coolest thing that I have ever had to look forward to!

(If you are confused thinking, “Wait, I thought you were already doing a Daniel Fast?” I’m doing what I call a “flexible Daniel Fast” for the year, but for the Lenten season I will do a regular ol’ Daniel Fast… which I call a “Hard-Core Daniel Fast” because only fruits, veggies, and nuts… that is hard core! You can read a little about the differences here. And you can also read my post where I realized I should do a “Hard-Core Daniel Fast” for Lent.)