Fasting and praying provide an opportunity to reset our scale of values, allowing us to find delight in the simple things, at the same time that enhance our expectations for the day we will be in the presence of the Triune God of the Universe.
I’m not going to tell you it’s easy, because it is not. I am not going to tell you that, while fasting, I am so spiritual that I do not even think about food.
That’s not true.
I’m also not praying every moment of this twelve hours; there is plenty to do around my studio!
But, in times fasting and praying, the Spirit of Truth – the Third Person of the Holy Trinity – is constantly conversing with me. He makes me more aware of my dependencies, of my inclinations, of my pride and, yes, of my idolatry. The moments I do invest in praying (actual prayer, with the door to my studio closed) are sweet and full of delight, despise of the growling coming from my stomach.
One of my simplest prayers is “Lord, help me to desire you more than the food I want now.”
As the day progresses, the expectation for the meal I’ll have to break the fast – still hours away – grows and grows. I think about it constantly. I dream about the moment I will sit at the table and eat; my need for nourishment satisfied, my expectations fulfilled, my longings no more. All this is but a shadow of what my soul and heart desire: to sit at His table, in the glory that is to come, and celebrate the Wedding Dinner of the Lamb!
These spiritual disciplines (fasting and prayer), in the hands of God the Holy Spirit, also enables me to delight in the simple things. He reminds me of how little I really need, as long as He is with me, to find delight here and now. I am telling you, water tastes amazing right about now (get behind me, Coke zero sugar!).
I hope and pray we all get to practice these and other spiritual disciplines more consistently, this 2019.
How do you practice fasting and prayer? Is there any other Spiritual Discipline you are keen of?
Remember His grace, Follow Him in humility, Cultivate constantly, All in cultural diversity.