Friday, January 15, 2010

Why Fast?

Can I just say, "This sista is HUNGRY!" On my way back from Little Rock on Wednesday, I had to stop by Whataburger! (Now before you run to tell Pastor Rick, you need to read the whole thing.) I had turned off I-30 in Arkansas, and there really isn't any place after that where I would stop to use the little girl's room. SO, I held it for a VERY long time, and as I was running to the restroom in Whataburger, the aroma wafted in my direction, and my knees went weak. This is my normal stop for a burger and fries on the way home or on the way to Little Rock. I had carried nuts and a trail mix with me, so I would have snack food, but that burger surely did smell inviting. I took care of my business, and I ran out of Whataburger. Flee from temptation!

Tonight at my parents' house, my kids had cheese pizza. The smell of the crust made my mouth water, but I refrained. This Daniel fast is harder than I imagined.

My co-workers went out to eat, and I ordered the vegetable soup and salad. The restaurant was chosen because I told them I needed to eat a salad, and the discussion started about the fast. "Why are you all fasting?" I explained that it's a time of purification and a time for us to regain our focus. I told them how the kids were fasting--TV, movies, sugar, or whatever was on the calendar and that we were fasting fast food – my weakness, I now realize.

Why am I fasting? Just because Pastor Rick leads us to do a thing doesn't mean I have to do it. Why are you fasting? Don't want others to talk about how you aren't fasting? While we are being led corporately to fast, fasting is a very personal choice as well as the reason we fast. For me, it's about seeking God. I need some direction in my life. "Should I start seminary or shouldn't I?" "What is the next step for women's ministry at Calvary?" And then, I have personal things that I'm seeking God's face and grace regarding. You know, God is so good. He rewarded my daughter with an answer to her prayers the first day, and it was a big one.

For me so far, the fasting has resulted in rest. I know that sounds odd, but when I was in Little Rock I couldn't keep my eyes open past 7:15 PM. I had been studying for my Sunday school class and preparing for a series we are going to start in February when He allowed me to sleep. At 6 AM I was awakened by a text from a friend who is also fasting. Her e-mail that followed is what I needed to read. God's conviction on my heart to confess my disobedience to another friend lay heavy on my heart, and I was able to be obedient Wednesday night. Friday night I'm expecting more from God in another personal matter.

So, why am I fasting? I'm fasting because I want to be clean before the Lord my God. I want to be anointed by holy, omnipotent Father. I fast because I'm expecting God to do awesome things in the life of my family, my church, my ministry, and in my life. I WANT REVIVAL! Could I do those things without fasting? Possibly, but the effectiveness of fasting makes my expectations reach for higher limits. Relying on God without putting human constraints on Him, looking to God for my most basic of needs, expecting God to move mightily and answer my prayers – these are the reasons I fast.

Why are you fasting?

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