“…in fasting and in sackcloth…”

Okay; I know with it being Ash Wednesday, and a day of strict fasting for many people, showing a photo of bacon sizzling is just flat-out mean. But I have to confess, I made my son bacon and eggs this morning, as he set off to his job site. He will be 4-5 hours north of us and working so many hours, we probably will not see him until well after Pascha. And it was important for me to send him off full and smiling. So we had bacon. Sugarless from Costco, and mighty tasty, but it is bacon. Sorry. But part of growing during Lent is ignoring what others have on their plates. So please don’t judge me. We are fasting from so much this year – and the company of my youngest son is one of them. And that is a hard, dark, fast if you ask me.

I also sent him off with this. Lysol wipes. Take note: they kill the human coronavirus in under 2 minutes on hard surfaces. And even though where he is going is probably one of the safest places he could be should this corona thing go wild, I wanted him to be prepared. He also has hand sanitizer! Purell in particular also lists the corona virus as one of the things it kills. So for me, I think it is smart to be prepared. Be smart, not in panic mode. We always prep because living where we do, the supply train can get blocked up by weather and other things. (In our case, the majority of goods come by barge or air, and weather really affects that). So we are never certain the grocery store shelves will be filled. We have dry and canned goods, as well as meals you can pack out in case you are camping and get stuck, etc. We have a generator because being without power after the earthquake last year was kinda scary. We keep extra water even though we have our own well. And we stock extra dog food, too. No one wants to have to try and make it to the pet store in a blizzard because you run out of their food! Each time I grocery shop, I buy extra to store for emergencies. It is just being prepared – just in case.

I also stocked my son up with things like Emergen-C. He loves the flavor and will actually drink it, so hey, why not? Costco sells it by the case! I sent him with a 2-month supply, leaving plenty on our shelves for us, too. It is a different mindset to live where supplies are not always readily available, and because of weather, getting to an ER or Urgent Care facility can be out of the question. I know that sounds weird if you live in a large metropolitan area, but living here requires a little forethought and planning – just in case. It changes how you look at the shelves in the grocery store, trust me. And the first time I walked into the store and there was absolutely not a single dairy product, I have to say I freaked out a little bit. LOL. We keep dry milk on hand, just in case, nowadays! Preparation is just part of our lives. Not crazy bunker people, just being smart about it. It staves off panic mode when…

And how does this all tie-in to Lent? Lent is preparation. Lent is when we get our spiritual houses in order. We prepare for the 2nd coming of Our Lord. We walk with Him along the path to Calvary. We join in His sacrifice and His suffering – for me. Because Christ would willingly DIE for just me; me alone. And that is so impactful. If we truly want to be prepared for a virus, how much more do we want to prepare for Our Lord? We have to always keep our eternity in front of us, guiding all we do. I tend to get caught up in what is happening in the world, and around me. I am not gonna lie, hugging my son and watching him drive away brought me to my knees and tears. He’s done this before, having worked away from home for weeks at a time, often in another state, while fighting forest fires. This time he is welding, but I know those things he is working on are tall and big and I’m a mom and I worry. LOL. It is what us moms do best – and trust me, even when they are all grown up, we still worry just as much. Age is not a factor! LOL!

And during Great Lent, preparation for eternity comes to the forefront of our daily focus. I am now at the tail-end of my life. As I have said before, there are far fewer years ahead of me than are behind me; I am way past the halfway mark. For me, people pass away around me all the time. Some are far too young; others have incurable illnesses and their bodies can no longer hold on. Still others are choosing to end their lives. Death comes to us all. As we prepare to accompany Our Lord on His walk to Calvary, I try to focus my mind more succinctly. I try to focus on my personal, salvific preparation. Just like making sure I have the tools I need to survive a natural disaster or a pandemic illness, I need the right tools around me, to help me prepare for eternity.

1 thought on ““…in fasting and in sackcloth…”

  1. I admit I’ve never lived in a geographic area where it was necessary to lay in a stock of food and supplies. We’ve taken a prudent approach toward hurricane preparations but even then we’re just not at high risk for supply chains breaking down. It’s been interesting thinking about the current situation with the virus because I have to use a hefty amount of imagination to think of what we need to do. The biggest risk is stores running out of things due to panic buying. With a household of nine and not a lot of freezer space we just have to do what we can do. God knows our needs and abilities and I trust we will have what we absolutely need.

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