Our Mutiny Against Excess: Wrap Up
We made it! Seven weeks to undo our excess.
We began our mutiny against excess seven weeks ago. My journey started on a plane boarding in the Philippines headed for home via Chicago. Two weeks with my new friends in Calamba (Philippines) awakened me to a great chasm between wealth and poverty; privilege and the less fortunate. And it forced me to take a look in the mirror.
We have spent the last seven weeks experimenting with fasting in various forms. We’ve limited our food choices and food consumption. We limited our clothing options. We limited our possessions and spending habits. We limited our media and technology. And we learned to reduce, reuse, and recycle more. Our team of Excess Warriors has waged war against excess well!
We discovered some new insights about ourselves during this journey. Here are some of the thoughts and insights of our warrior team:
- I can survive without cake, bread, coffee, chocolate, etc.
- So many [food] options can cripple us
- I realized I am an emotional overeater
- It’s difficult to find unprocessed, unsweetened food
- Dear ____, feed the hungry!
- Try to be nicer when you are hungry
- My lifestyle influences my food choices
- Weather makes a small wardrobe challenging; imagine being homeless
- An unexpected trip to court required a change to our [limited] wardrobe for the week
- It is a luxury to be able to change clothes and not worry if you will have something to wear tomorrow
- I have a lot of laundry
- I have a lot of junk
- It was difficult to part with some of my possessions [books, clothes, etc]
- Less stuff, less stress
- I now keep a “donate box” to fill as I go
- It expands my global views
- It discourages me
- It challenges me
- It creates FOMO
- I will adopt Meatless Mondays
- I will switch to reusable shopping bags
- I will stop using napkins/paper towels at home
- I will handwash my dishes more often
- I will switch to stainless steel straws
- I need to decrease my dining out budget
- I need to spend more prudently
- I will look for options to shop locally
- I will reduce spending to give more generously
- God is there even when I forget to pause
- I need to continue this fast to spend more time with God
- My online connections keep me from feeling alone
- God is Lord of the night and the day
- I need to plan more time with God in order to reduce my stress level
The most difficult part of these seven weeks seems to have been consistency. Most of the Excess Warriors struggled with one or more weeks. We got caught up in our regular routines and forgot about the fast. We were caught off guard by changes in plans and our access to excess made it easy to cheat. Even though some of us have more than others, I think we each realized we have been blessed with abundance.
As we take time to look outward, we discover we are more alike than we realize. We all struggle in one way or another. We find courage and strength as we journey together. Dear reader, find some friends to take this challenge. Rise up against excess to discover that God truly has supplied all your needs in Christ Jesus.