Today (Ash Wednesday) is a day of fasting and abstinence.
As Catholics, we abstain from meat today. I seldom go a day without eating meat so this is a sacrifice for me but I do so willingly because God is more important to me than a piece of meat.
As Catholics, we are also called to fast today, meaning one main meal, and two small meals. I like to eat. I like to snack (especially on my favorite candy). As I write this at 8:15 p.m. on Ash Wednesday, I realize that fasting for a single day really isn’t that difficult. I like to tell myself that when I eat it is always because I am hungry. Unfortunately, I think the snacking is more about habit rather than hunger.
My faith in God is stronger than my desire for a candy bar. I give up the candy bar readily today. What I need is to figure out how to give up candy and any other bad habits for ever. It isn’t that candy is a terrible thing. While, there are certainly more healthy things to eat, that doesn’t make eating candy a sin.
If eating candy isn’t a sin, then why should I give it up (or at least eat far less of it)? First, the obvious answer is that it isn’t good for me. The second answer relates to another reason I eat too much candy. When I am stressed, I snack more. I think a lot of people do this. I would be far better off turning to God with my stress.
Is there something in your life that you turn to in stress instead of turning to God?