Fasting and Temptation

The Adversary has three super-duper pack-a-wallop weapons in its arsenal for Sunday mornings:
1) cold bathroom tile
2) warm bedding
3) leftover pizza

After 22 years of pretty regular church attendance (come hell or high water), the first two don’t faze me for more than a few minutes. I don’t get the spiritual tingles at church every Sunday, but when I’ve missed a one, there’s this feeling deep inside me that there’s something wrong. So I toss back the covers and do the cold-tile dance in the bathroom.

I fast before partaking of the Eucharist. It’s a thing. That I started when I was a Methodist and we only got it once a month. When you can roll out of bed at 8.30a and still make it to church in time for the 9am service, well, fasting is super-easy.

Except when you have to get up at 7.30am after you’d capped a long Saturday of packing and moving by staying up until 1am chattering with new housemates, and there’s that cold pizza smell lingering in the kitchen. Oh, and it was GOOD pizza; with locally made pepperoni and a fabulously thin crust. I swear I heard my stomach gurgle, “Gimme pizza! Gimme pizza NOW!”

I certainly don’t think I’m going to go to Hell for having a piece of pizza before church. And, you know, the drive is long, and there’s choir rehersal beforehand, and I’ve got a tendency towards low blood sugar that makes me cranky…

The Rationalization Train was just pulling into the station, and I was thinking about swinging on board. But each rationalization could be met with another one. My low blood sugar wouldn’t hurt anyone, and I am a grown-up who can watch what I say to people. The drive is 15 minutes, on quiet city streets, quit whining. And I may not go to Hell for eating a piece of pizza, but I’m trying for more discipline in my spiritual life, not less, and that would set a dangerous precedent.

“Besides,” I thought to myself, “No one’s going to eat the pizza before I get back.”

Famous last words.


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