It's Been Lent All Along
Today marks the beginning of the Lenten season. From now until Easter, Christians across the globe will honor the age-old practice of fasting as we contemplate the Passion of Christ crucified. As a child, I would choose to fast from my ever-strong addiction to candy and/or soda. I would use it as an opportunity to drop some pounds. I would also use it as a virtue signal of how good I was at being a Christian. Thankfully, as Paul said, when I was a child I thought as a child, but now I've grown. Some. Completely matured? Probably not, but making progress.
What does it mean to practice fasting during Lent as a nerd? I've spent a good chunk of time going back and forth between establishing a nerd-themed practice or making a video game like we did during Advent. In the end, I've realized that we are practicing fasting daily at Checkpoint Church already. Our entire ministry is one big fasting season - maybe not a Lenten one exactly, but fasting indeed.
Unlike my childhood self believed, fasting isn't about restriction. It's also not really about one's identity in Christ either. Instead, fasting is about disorder. It's about disruption. It's about breaking out of the status quo. What we do with that time is what really matters - we aren't giving up something we love that may or may not be a bad habit. We're disrupting our usual sense of flow or scheduling and allowing that time to serve as contemplation for something greater. In Lent, we contemplate the death of Christ and the eventual death of our own bodies.
At Checkpoint, we exist as a disruption to the standards of the church and of digital communities. We aren't what church "usually" looks like. Nor are we what a Discord community "usually" looks like. Nor are we what our members lives "usually" look like. In this way, our very nature is one of contemplative fasting. Someday Lenten fasting will be necessary for us, but for now our Lenten practice is already being done. Disruption - thy name is Checkpoint.