Six months before my 100 year old grandmother died, she stopped wanting to eat. She didn’t stop eating. She still ate. She grew up in an orphanage in Poland, and there was a certain duty around eating and cleaning and making beds.

She stopped wanting to eat.

Working from home, my whole routine revolves around eating. I am consumed by thoughts of food. I want to eat all the time. At 8:00a, I can have my breakfast smoothie. At 10:00a, I can have some chocolate. At 12:00p, I can eat lunch. And so on and so forth. In retaliation, this Lenten season I fasted. I wanted to think about Jesus’ words that we do not live by bread alone, but on the word of God. I fasted parts of days, skipping a meal. Once in a while, I fasted for a whole day.

Fasting for 24 hours is hard. When I think about food while in a fast, I want to lean into it and fully experience the discomfort. I want to dwell on what it might be like to be hungry long term. When hungry for a few hours, I’m tired, I can’t think well, I’m crabby. What happens to a young child who is always hungry but expected to learn? What happens to an adult who is always hungry but expected to work? I hope ruminating on being hungry changes how I consume food. I hope it will change my habit of eating for entertainment— every day cannot be a feast day.

As the end of Lent approached, I began to think of the joy of resurrection and that I will see my grandmother again someday. I allowed myself to think about the menu for the party we will attend after church early Easter morning. The celebration of Life over Death should be a feast of food, drink, and fellowship. The feast teaches us to hope for a time when all will be fed and satisfied.