Is the Spiritual Discipline of Fasting Un-American?
“The Supper of the Lamb,” Robert Farrar Capon’s
great theological cookbook, dissed dieting,
insisting it was better far to feast, then fast.
But we are surrounded by ads, take-outs,
fast-FOOD! Can we really just be drinking
plain water for a day? Can a fast last?
We can remember to say Grace
(recall when a prayer was thinking
food was a gift?) Be thankful FAST!
Then souls will grow, waist-lines
shrink. It bears repeating:
we must first feast, then fast.
while moving fast…
– Steve Shoemaker, Urbana, IL August 21, 2012
Steve’s poem transported me back in time to the boyhood where Grace preceded every meal. All heads were bowed. All ears were open and mouths shut before we feasted on my mother’s cooking. Many of the words my parents offered are gone, but the gift they gave us was deeper than words: the quiet, humble, reverent tone with which the prayers were uttered… on our behalf…and on behalf of those who had no food. Nothing at the feast was fast or taken for granted. “Give us this day our daily bread….”