At Grace Apostolic, (our church), Pastor Stephen has declared that starting January 2, 2008, the month of January a month of consecration. This means essentially we will be fasting and praying for 21 days. Now, I have yet to actually fast that many days in a row. I have fasted as many as 7 days before, but never beyond that.
The all-important thing for me now is to get over my obsession or pre-occupation with food. I’m told, and I’ve read in several articles, that food brings with it a variety of things OTHER than nutrition. There are the associated addictive properties and of course the bond that one can have with food. The one I wish to briefly touch on is the “comfort” factor.
Food’s Comfort Factor
I can’t believe I’m actually acknowledging this, but it’s true. I find comfort in food. What does that mean really? Just that I turn to food for emotional support when I have so many other avenues, cheifest of course is the Great Comforter Jesus. In Hebrews 13:5 it’s stated to, “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” I don’t know about you, but THAT’S comfort. Whatever tie or pre-occupation with food that I have, I must render it ineffective in my life when compared to the comfort the Lord provides me.
The Right Motive for Fasting
I can’t overstate the importance of maitaining the right frame of mind and heart when fasting. I can’t escape the physical effects that fasting will have, but I do not want them to overshadow the spiritual impact that I hope fasting will bring. Someone asked me yesterday, “with you planning on fasting the entire 21 days with just water (actually I am allowing myself 4-6 cups of herbal tea a day), did you weigh yourself to see what you started at?” My reply was simply no. My focus is not on what physical changes happen as much as spiritual changes that happen. That means downplaying whatever effects (good or bad) that arise with fasting and seeking rather to grow spiritually. John the baptist said it best, “He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:30.
Some other scriptures I point myself to when I fast are here Isaiah 58 (the whole chapter) and Matthew 6:16-18.
How Do I Feel?
With Day 1 under my belt (or no longer under my belt depending on your view of fasting), I have to say I feel remarkably well. I only feel slightly weak physically, but spiritually I feel I am embarking upon something that is sure to reap far greater benefits for me than if I were to be eating physical food.