was wrong.” What did you think I was going to say. “I love you.” No way, too many people throw that sentence around like it was there job, they they have a quota of things and people that they have to say they love before they die. Not lying, I have heard people say, “I love you,” to inanimate objects and while I do love food, I try not to look food in the eyes (only when its potatoes) and say I love you.
The three words I am talking about are “I was wrong.” No one likes to admit that they messed up, whether it is some obscure fact about the 13th president of the US, Millard Fillmore (didn’t even have to look that one up!) or about whether you remember someone’s name when you clearly done that (listen to Brian Regan’s bit about nicknames, hilarious!).
We, as humans like to believe we are infallible when in fact we are so fallible it is ridiculous. I can’t even type this blog without seeing the red squiggly line appear under a bunch of words, because “I was wrong” when I spelled the word.
I am here to tell you that “I was wrong.” A while back I wrote a blog about fasting. In that blog I talked about how I thought fasting was not necessarily about food, how instead of depriving myself of food and praying to God during that time, I would not use technology for one day a week and get things done. Wow, did I miss the boat. I was sooooo wrong. I have been convicted big-time by the book “God’s Chosen Fast” by Author Wallis.
In the book Mr. Wallis talks about how fasting has been converted to something different in modern society. It not longer is about what it was about in the Bible and it is something rarely done at all. He talks about how fasting is all about restricting food intake in some form, whether it is no food at all, only certain foods (like the Daniel fast) or both food and drink. The biggest thing though is that he pointed out Jesus’ words about fasting.
17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. (italics mine)
When? Did you just say “when you fast”, Jesus? That means I am supposed to do this….dang it! I have to actually restrict food intake so that I may concentrate and pray. There are medical reasons why a fast can be beneficial, but honestly I don’t care about that. Jesus commands us to fast. Now I’m not going to tell you when I am fasting seeing as that would go against the next verse, but I do encourage you to read this book (it’s not too long) and check out what happened to people in the Bible and others since then when they did fast.
One warning though, do not just fast without knowing the proper way. I don’t want anyone fasting in the wrong way. Do some research first.
I am a big fan of food. You don’t become 400+ lbs and not love to eat, not that I am that big anymore, but the fact that I love food is still the same. That’s why when people bring up the idea of fasting, I cringe. I have used many reasons not to fast over the years including diabetes when I had it, working out now and other reasons to avoid fasting. Greater Europe Mission encourages us to fast at least once a month and yet I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. That is probably the exact reason why I should be doing it, but within the last few weeks I have decided to start the fasting in a different way than I originally thought. I mean, after all Jesus says in Matthew 6:16 “When you fast,” not “if you fast.”
First I had to think about what the point of fasting is. From what I understand of fasting the point of it is to replace something that you do on a regular basis and replace it with prayer and other actions that are pleasing to God. In Isaiah 58:6-7 it says:
“No, this is the kind of fasting I want:
Free those who are wrongly imprisoned;
lighten the burden of those who work for you.
Let the oppressed go free,
and remove the chains that bind people.
Share your food with the hungry,
and give shelter to the homeless.
Give clothes to those who need them,
and do not hide from relatives who need your help
I could be completely wrong about this, but that is what I am getting from the different verses on fasting that I could find. If you think I am wrong, please let me know because I would hate to be misinformed.
Based on these recent thoughts of mine I have decided to fast from wasting time with technology for one day a week. For some people that may not be a big deal because they don’t use technology that often, and when they do it is for a purpose. For me, I could literally watch shows on tv I don’t even like, play games on facebook that are pointless and boring or just waste time in general. I would love to completely remove technology from my life one day a week and some weeks that might be possible, but other weeks that just wouldn’t work, especially when I get to Germany and am making online courses. It would be pretty hard to make online courses offline.
I tell you what, the last three weeks I have been much more productive than normal. I have been praying more, I have been reading more and I have been doing things around the house that I would normally put off. Yesterday I literally woke up and while waiting to eat breakfast I did the dishes at 8:30 in the morning. I mean honestly, who does that? Not me, I know that for sure. The only reason I even consider doing the dishes as part of the fasting process for me is because my brother is letting me live rent-free while I raise support and I need to be honoring God by helping my brother around the house more than I was before.
I’m not saying this is the best way to fast, it is just working for me. I would love to hear what some of the rest of you are doing, leave me a comment letting me know how you do what you do “When you fast.”