I’m not a Greek scholar, and I don’t play one on TV.
However, I understand that kenosis, in New Testament Greek terms, is a word which describes paring-down, shedding excess, maybe even doing more with less. I suppose it can include fasting, if you want to read it that way, and so I choose to read it that way. I could be wrong. I’ve been wrong before, and survived it.
At any rate, I’m going into a season of kenosis beginning this Wednesday, Ash Wednesday. I have a good example for it: a Savior who fasted in the desert 40 days while being tempted by the Accuser. (Hard to accuse Someone who’s perfect; best just to play to His needs and wants.)
So I’m going to try to need and want less for the 40 days following Wednesday as I have for the previous couple of years. But this year will be a little different. My first year, I weaned myself off of my beloved Mountain Dew for an entire Lenten season. Last year I parted with soft drinks laced with caffeine. This Lent, I’m going to try to temporarily break my addiction to soft drinks entirely.
It’ll just be good ol’ Ozarka or Mountain Valley Water, or the chilled, filtered stuff from my refrigerator’s front door.
And in the spirit of fasting preferred by Isaiah (ch. 58), I’ll be tossing the unspent beverage coinage into a receptacle to benefit a far greater need than my craving for sugary beverages.
It won’t stop there. I’m hoping to fast from indolence as well. I intend to find some active, physical ways to actually do some of God’s work instead of just writing and talking about it. I have some things in mind, but haven’t prayed about them fully yet – so they’re not ready for sharing yet.
But I would welcome your prayers and support in my fast – and would be glad to challenge anyone who feels intrigued by it to join me and millions of other Christian folks in this season of kenosis.