Speaking of birds, I’m thinking of forgoing meat for a forty-day period soon – maybe a couple of forty day periods, even. I say this because I’m at a quandry. I wish I were one of those people who could be convinced to never, ever eat meat. I understand that it’s unethical to eat most meats – certainly the mass-produced meats that I can afford to eat with any sort of regularity. I understand that the mass consumption of so much meat is a burden on the planet in many ways (butane gas from so many cows needed for McD’s, for example). There are many other reasons to go vegan/veggie, and I want to expound on them through these twelve days of Christmas.
Another reason this is such a battle for me is that I can’t quite decide to do this fast during Lent with most of the Christian world, or to do it through January with my own church.
Evangelical churches, which is my tradition, are so anti-traditional that they mark their own traditions. And I kind of like that iconoclasm of these churches. But something in me misses aligning with the rest of the church. Being so individualistic really has its downsides, as it’s a lemming-like individualism.
My own church has a pretty cool habit of fasting beginning at the start of the year. It’s a way of sanctioning the year for Jesus. But my problem is I don’t really celebrate New Years. Starting a new year at the top of winter just doesn’t sit well with this Chicagoan. The ancient practice of beginning the year during spring (and Lent being a way to purge out the old year) just makes so much more sense to me.
Also, since we’re thinking of pears and the ability to pick them from their trees, please remember the plight of the undocumented workers paid far below living wages and even minimum wages to do back-breaking work and then disrespected enough to be imprisoned and harassed for trying to make a better life for themselves and their families.
Happy first day of Christmas! Only eleven more to go.