Do you fast? It certainly isn't my favorite thing to do, but when I received an email a couple of weeks ago from Lou Engle's ministry asking those who are willing, can do it, and think God may be calling them, to fast for 40 days from Aug. 31 to October 9 (see here), we decided to join him.
Not only would I like to see revival come to this country (one of the reasons for the fast) but it seemed that everything was conspiring to help us decide to do it. That time frame exactly fits between two big events in our schedule, I have been working through Mark Virkler's Prayers That Heal The Heart, I have been saying we need to get back to eating right, and I have a doctor's appointment coming up later in October so I would be glad to lose a little weight and make sure my labs come out great. I have discovered the only way losing weight/eating right works for me is to dedicate it to God as a fast, so as you can see some of my reasons are to benefit me, but since I believe God uses whatever He needs to accomplish His plans and purposes, I'm all right with that.
We have decided to fast white flour and sugar--especially desserts. I don't know about you, but I am so addicted to these two ingredients that it's almost easier for me to stop eating altogether than it is to try to avoid eating things made with sugar and white flour. There aren't many fast food items you can consume, other than salads, that are not centered around these two ingredients so that means cooking and eating at home more. On a busy schedule that makes things even more difficult.
Even our choices of what to do on weekends is affected. The Casey Popcorn Festival is going on this weekend, but what fun is that if you can't have corn dogs, elephant ears, funnel cakes, nutty bars…? See what I mean? It is an effort to rearrange and rethink our eating habits. This whole exercise in fasting shows how centered our lives are around food.
For me, fasting is a needed discipline every so often to remind me of how needy I am of God's help in every area of my life.