Wednesday, March 6th: Ash Wednesday Service (12 Noon & 6:30 PM)
Ash Wednesday Reading: Luke 4.1-13
Thursday, March 7- Romans 8.1-17
Friday, March 8- Galatians 5.16-26
Saturday, March 9- Ephesians 4.17-24
Monday, March 11- James 1:2-3
Tuesday, March 12- Roman 12:2
Wednesday, March 13-John 14:27
Thursday, March 14-Proverbs 16:3
Friday, March 15-Colossians 3:2
Saturday, March 16-Psalm 51
March 17th- 31st: Financial Fast
Monday, March 18- Genesis 12:1-9
Tuesday, March 19- Genesis 22: 1-19
Wednesday, March 20-Isaiah 51:1-16
Thursday, March 21-Luke 12:22-34
Friday, March 22-Romans 4:13-25
Saturday, March 23rd-Hebrews 6: 13-20
Monday, March 25- Psalm 118:6
Tuesday, March 26- Romans: 8:6
Wednesday, March 27- Psalm 94:19
Thursday, March 28- 1 Chronicles 16:11
Friday, March 29- Psalm 37:5-6a
Saturday, March 30- Matthew 18:21-35
Monday, April 1-Sunday, April 14th- Social Media Fast
Monday, April 1- 1 Peter 5:7
Tuesday, April 2- Luke 14:11
Wednesday, April 3- Psalm 55:22
Thursday, April 4- Deuteronomy 31:6
Friday, April 5- Philippians 4:6
Saturday, April 6-Matthew 18:21-35
Monday, April 8- Colossians 4:6
Tuesday, April 9- 1 Thessalonians 4:3a
Wednesday, April 10- Luke 21:33
Thursday, April 11- Romans 6:13b
Friday, April 12- 1 Corinthians 16:13
Saturday, April 13- Luke 15:11-32
Financial Fast- (March 17th-31st)
1. This is a perfectly reasonable period of time to cut back on your wants and focus only on your needs. If you commit for less time, you may not really absorb the benefits of a fast and the transformative effects it can have on your financial habits. However, a longer period could put your resolve and willpower to an unreasonable test.
2. Only Purchase Needs. Unless you absolutely need it to survive, don’t buy it during your fast. That eliminates trips to the hair salon, happy hour at the bar, restaurant dinners, movies, online purchases, and even birthday presents for your best friends. Instead, your money should only go toward food, housing, medication, and other necessities.
3. Pay With Cash Only. You become much more conscious of the spending process when you actually pay in cash. Those bills can serve as a potent visual reminder of the decisions you’re making, as you make them. When the cash stays in your wallet, you’re going to feel a lot better about your self-restraint.
4. Keep a Spending Journal. Throughout your financial fast, keep a detailed log of what you spend, what you save, and where you may be struggling. You can refer to this journal when you’re all done to help identify spending triggers and habits you’d like to change.
Social Media & Entertainment Fast- (April 1st-14th)
Reasons to take breaks from social media and entertainment?
1. Less Unhealthy Comparison
Studies show that people who spend large amounts of time scrolling on social media are more likely to suffer from depression. Ideally, an online community would make its users feel connected and cared for. However, some people tend to leave these sites feeling some combination of envy, loneliness, frustration or anger after comparing their lives and feeling socially inadequate compared to their peers. Taking a break from social media can help a person embrace a more realistic, optimistic view of themselves and others.
2. Better Sleep
Computer screens give off blue light, which can trick the body into thinking it is midday when, in reality, it is evening. Exposure to blue light causes the body to produce less melatonin, the sleep hormone. Adequate sleep is an extremely important component of health, and late-night browsing through the explore page of Instagram can cause a person to face difficulty when trying to fall asleep. If you are interested in improving your energy and getting restful sleep, a social media fast may be just for you.
3. Less Stress
Social media and television supplies an influx of information for the brain to process during what would normally be rest time. The several hour’s people normally spend on sites like Facebook demand time and energy for witnessing opinions, issues and conflicts that are irrelevant to the present time and place. Fasting from social media and television restores the traditional approach to free time for the duration of the fast, allowing a person to live in the moment and be undivided in their attentions.
4. More Meaningful Social Interaction
Now that people are able to portray their ideal selves on social media, they tend to lose out on real intimacy and accountability. People post all types of information about themselves online, allowing them to practice transparency without actually being vulnerable with others. Important research by TED Talk legend and research professor Brené Brown, suggests that the most integral need of the human race is human connection, which requires vulnerability and authenticity with others. We need these person-to-person connections to live a fulfilled life. For a generation accustomed to editing their images and revising their comments, connecting with people from a place of authenticity takes practice.
5. Cultivating Self-Control
Odds are, the first thing you do after you wake up in the morning and cut off your smartphone alarm is check your social media accounts for updates. I’m also willing to argue that you find yourself throughout the day looking at old posts on Instagram, unable to remember opening the app in the first place. If you are accessing social media on autopilot, it may be a sign of dependency and, possibly, addiction. It’s likely that you also tend to divide the attention you should be giving your loved ones between them and your phone screen. Self-control is important when it comes to managing time well, to the effect of a successful life.
6. More Presence of Mind
The most powerful thing a person can be is present. Before communities became established on the internet in addition to the “real” world, people struggled to keep from focusing on the past and the future. Now, it’s so much more complicated. There is an entire alternative "present" taking place on the internet which is constantly competing with the here and now. Great novelist Leo Tolstoy said, “There is only one time that is important — NOW! It is the most important time because it is the only time that we have any power.” Let's not give up our power. A social media/entertainment fast is a good way to exercise personal power when pursuing social goals, creative endeavors, cultural experiences and other priceless ambitions.