Monday, August 5, 2013

First Fast

Superstar has been fascinated at how each month Daddy goes without eating breakfast or lunch once or twice each month for religious reasons. We explained that the first Sunday in each month is designated as "Fast Sunday," when all capable members of the church skip food and drink for 24 hours to come closer to God. The money they don't spend on their own food is then donated to help care for the poor.

Last month, Superstar announced he was going to join our fast. So yesterday we invited him to. Because we have church from 11-2, we tend to have 4 meals on Sunday: breakfast, lunch-before, lunch-after, and dinner. We asked him which one of those 4 he wanted to skip. He chose to skip lunch-before. We were slightly trepidatious since both kids have had some serious reverence problems the last two weeks, but we tried it out.

Superstar was wonderfully reverent the entire meeting. The primary presidency even came by our home (which means less when they live in the same building) to tell us he was "awesome." Score one point.

During fast and testimony meeting, Superstar turned to me near the end and told me he wanted to bear his testimony. About what, I asked? "Fasting." Hokay. The advantage of living in Nigeria was training our kids for two years to bear their testimony each month, so I knew we had some practice with this. We had told the kids that there were a lot of other people at church now so they didn't have to bear their testimony. But if he wants to on a slow day with significant pauses between people, I'm certainly not going to argue.

He testified about how he was fasting for the first time. He also talked about the Book of Mormon, how he was reading about the tree of life and what it symbolized. Several people mentioned how impressed they were with his testimony.

We had another interesting testimony moment. A little girl bore her testimony: "I want to bear my testimony that I know Jesus loves me, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen." Superstar looked up from his doodling to ask me what she said. I told him. He responded, "That's only one period!" We are fascinated that that's how he chose to express the idea of a short testimony.

After church, he told us he liked fasting so much that when he is baptized at age 8, he will fast for 24 hours like Daddy. Then, when he turns 10, he'll start fasting for 2 days in a row: Sunday and Monday.

We, um, mostly say "okay, sure." We've talked about the importance of nutrition and water to the body, that longer fasts are usually unusual, but we have no desire to dampen his spirit before the reality of what it's like to fast for 24 hours hits in. He wants to be excited, let him. We'll stand guard over that bridge when he comes to it.

So that was Superstar's first experience fasting.