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Posts Tagged ‘discipline’

I may have taken on more than I should. Lent is traditionally a time to let go of some things so you have more time to spend meditating or thinking about the final days leading up to Jesus’ death and resurrection. Normally I pick something  hard to let go of…and that is certainly the case this year. I have decided to fast caffeine until Easter. That’s 46 days if you’re counting. I am. And I just took a pill for the headache that has already started.

No_Caffeine

But not only have I decided to give up caffeine, I have taken on a few other disciplines. I’m participating in a 40-day Bible study with other women from our church on the Final Days of Jesus. It’s basically a daily endeavor incorporating prayer, praise, Scripture study, reflection and sabbath. I’ve also decided to send out a encouraging card to someone every day…40 cards. And, of course, I said I’d blog every day. My normal routine continues so the plates are spinning but I’m not looking for a medal for “Greatest Christian Woman Ever.” I just want to explore some new ways of experiencing Lent – both with new people and with renewed focus on Jesus.

While many decorate their homes with bunnies and eggs, most Christians contemplate Easter’s true message – the love our Savior Jesus had for each of us…so much love He sacrificed Himself to save us from the wages of our sin. Good Friday is the day of Christ’s death but Easter is a celebration of the resurrection of the Son of God!

And this is the last you’ll hear of my caffeine fast.

“Even now,” declares the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.” Joel 2:12

 

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Nothing.

I should probably just stop right there. That would be the shortest blog ever.

Simply put, fasting is to abstain from food, usually for a certain period of time or for a certain purpose.

The discipline of fasting is not unique to Christians. In fact, many religions are required to fast, including Muslims who fast from dawn to sunset for the month of Ramadan. During Lent, Catholics are asked to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, and to abstain from eating meat on Fridays (hence those awesome fish fry dinners at every American Legion hall in America).

Though the Bible is full of references to fasting, from my observation, the practice is not a consistent discipline in an average  Christian’s life. Mine included. So yesterday, because I had a friend who desperately needs healing, I fasted and prayed all day. Well – most of the day. Well – from dawn until sunset…less than 12 hours. And I actually thought I deserved a medal or something.

This is my confession. I’m proud and arrogant when it comes to Christian disciplines and I have no will power when it comes to food. If I hadn’t left my normal lunch at home (and thankfully no one brought anything good to work yesterday), I probably would have caved by 10 in the morning. Why is it I think I’m starving after only one hour without food? Pathetic.

So – that’s my newest addition. I’d like to study the discipline of fasting, maybe read a book or two, and get into what the Scriptures say about this “doing without food” thing. I don’t anticipate any 40-day fast in my future…let’s be honest. It’s like telling me when I first started running that I would do a marathon that same year. Not going to happen.

But if the practice of fasting was a normal part of the people of the Word, it should be a normal part of my life as well. Thanks for reading – now, you can go back to your snacks.

Isaiah 58:6 – “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke.”

Fasting-black-and-white

 

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