I lust after artisan cheese.
Whether I'm in a fancy Whole Foods-type market or a Walmart supercenter, my eyes and feet are drawn to the case of cheese. Forget those insipid blocks of Great Value mozzarella—this is the real stuff.
Fresh, blue, round, soft, goat, herb, gouda, manchego, tallegio, stilton...the list goes on and on. I love looking and touching and examining these cheeses, but never actually purchase one because the prices make me gag. $6.00 for that? So I drool in silence.
Well, not totally in silence. I have been known to murmur, even complain, to myself about the tightness of funds and the fact that I can't just grab a hunk of Sbrinz and have at it. No, I have to watch my pocketbook.
But this 40 day challenge has changed some things for me.
- Self-Denial: By denying myself things that I've taken for granted—cocoa-dusted almonds, second helpings of roast pork, Isalean shakes—I'm learning what it's like to go without life's little luxuries.
- The Contrast: Giving up the foods I love has made me see the huge difference between what I consider to be a "little luxury" and what starving children in Ghana and Ecuador would see as a "little luxury".
- Gratitude: After facing this drastic contrast, I am more aware than ever of how wealthy I really am.
Now when I walk through the grocery store aisles it's as if my eyes have been opened. I see it all from a new perspective—that of a child in poverty. Look at all those flavors of Pringles! Wow, the nut section is amazing. Is yogurt really that expensive?
Back to my artisan cheese thing—how selfish and ungrateful can I be to lust after the Camembert while little Anita is thankful for a bowl of rice and chicken? May we never forget to give thanks for the amazing ways in which God has blessed us, be they as small as a dollop of mayonnaise or as great as a comfortable vehicle.