Important changes coming to the Highrock Network of Churches
Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?
Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—
when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
There’s a story in the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 19:16-22, about a wealthy young man who approaches Jesus with a question: “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?” And after some dialogue, Jesus tells him what he doesn’t want to hear: “Go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
He was inviting the man into a radically alternative lifestyle, to examine the places of excess and greed in his heart, and to repurpose everything. Not to earn God’s Kingdom; to embody it.
This Lenten season, we want to try doing the same. Many Christians choose to fast from something during Lent - from meals, sweets, or social media to make space in their lives for self-examination, repentance, and a fresh connection with Christ’s sacrifice.
That’s a good practice, but this year, we want to explore taking practices that benefit ourselves and repurposing them to also benefit others. We don’t just want to fast from food; we want to give food away. We don’t just want to examine our spending habits; we want to be generous with our giving. Rather than living for ourselves, we want to live for Christ and make our much into more.
Writer Jen Hatmaker said it like this: “What’s the payoff from living a deeply reduced life? It’s the discovery of a greatly increased God.” This Lenten experiment is not about guilt. It’s about freedom from the things in our lives that aren’t surrendered to Jesus. It’s about our lives, our land, our lifestyles - repurposed.
-Highrock Haverhill Staff
P.S. This Lenten Experiment is an adaptation of Jen Hatmaker’s Simple & Free Experiment