What A Crappy Time of Year to Live on 2 Dollars

There could be an easier time of year to try to live off of $2 per day, right?  I mean once we hit Thanksgiving it is non stop feasting and parties straight through New Years Day.   There are office parties, cookies as far as the eye can see, amazing chocolates, family get togethers and those tastes like Cranberry Bliss Bars and Peppermint Mochas that only come once per year.   How can I take a day off from all of this feasting?  Be fair!  Lets face it…to live off of $2 at this time per year comes with an even greater sacrifice.

That is exactly why the 2 Dollar Day Challenge comes at this time of year – Impact.   If I take time out while the rest of the world is going crazy consuming and practicing gluttony to the fullest extreme, then maybe the stark contrast will catch me off guard and go deep into my heart and mind.  Maybe, the excesses of my home culture will suddenly be invaded by the plight of the poor and broken throughout the world.   Maybe my lifestyle of the rich and famous will be intersected in a renewed way by the daily struggles of the meek and forgotten?  Maybe the weirdness (holiness) of the moment will do something inexplicable in me and my family.

Truly this day is one day in a lifetime of asking God to open our eyes to what really is around us.  It is a one day practice to encourage us onward in a lifetime of seeing behind the veneer and plasticity of the lure of consumerism and materialism to see the truth of the Gospel that is always driving towards righteousness, mercy, justice, love and sharing.  It is simply a taste of the life Jesus invites us into of seeing all things restored and renewed.

To observe 2 Dollar Day at this time of year, just 2 short weeks before we celebrate the coming of Our Savior – remember that is Who we are celebrating – gives us time to pause and reflect on Jesus, born into poverty at a point in history where the Empire of greed and oppression was in full flame.   He was born into obscurity and humility even to the point where He was not able to be dedicated in the fullest way, but rather by the offering reserved for the poor.   Over time, He Himself would become fatherless (in the earthly sense), His mother would become a widow and He would spend His life technically homeless and misunderstood, while declaring and demonstrating His Kingdom to  the outcast, misfit, broken, sick and irreligious.

As we turn our back on the excesses around us for 1 day and grow in empathy for the poor, may we also grow in understanding of Our Savior and King and His Mission.  May the veneer and the plasticity of our Christianity be broken through as we get glimpses of how in some areas it is more informed by the Empires of Materialism and Consumerism rather than The Kingdom of God.   May King Jesus reign, rather than the forces that so easily vie for our commitment.  In Simplicity and ordinariness, may Jesus reign in a deeper way in our lives on this day.

Who knows…maybe the lessons of Thursday will inform our practice on Friday, too.

Come Lord Jesus…make yourself known to us in a fuller way as we turn away from the forces of gluttony, excess, consumerism and materialism and turn our attention to You.  May we not only encounter the Poor, but may we also encounter You.  May Your Kingdom come in a fuller way, today and tomorrow.

If you haven’t yet signed up for the 2 Dollar Day, there’s still 24 hours.  Visit www.2dollarday.com  and join us.

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