Tonight we celebrate the completion of our women’s Bible study. Focused on “Sermon on the Mount”, the Beatitudes, Angela Thomas has led us through seven weeks of encouragement, self-reflection and awareness using her teachings in A Beautiful Offering. As a divorced mom of four (newly remarried, halleleijua!) Angela is down-to-earth, practical and very motivating.
One day last week, we studied fasting. I was surprised to realize I had no insight into fasting. Biblical fasting is “not eating”, with the intent of spiritual communication. There aren’t a lot of rules. The bottom line is YOUR relationship with the LORD. Fasting is a sacrifice. Hunger converted from food focus to Christ is a humbling experience.
Matthew 6:17:18 says “Then no one will notice that you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in private. And your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.”
Perhaps this is why I was clueless about fasting – it’s secret. I needed to see for myself.
I learned that I think more about eating than I do about God. When stressed, I look to food for comfort before I look to my savior. There is a pattern to satisfying my physical hunger that I lack in my spiritual life. My life is more focused on my stomach than my heart. In the Bible, they fasted 40 days. I intentionally ate no food for 40 hours.
At the end, I did not rush to the pantry and scarf down the cookies. It was a quiet and peaceful moment I used to reflect and be thankful. My stomach was not growling. I felt content and refreshed.