Fasting. No really. Fasting.

We’ve been reflecting this week on different scriptures that point the way to things that deepen our faith. These things that help us grow closer to God, these things are what Wesley called a “Means of Grace.”  In these things – God gives us grace to grow.

Thus far they’ve been things that we all like and agree are important. Prayer. Scripture.  Things such as that.  Listen today, though, to this important thing talked about in Acts 14:23:

Paul and Barnabas also appointed elders in every church. With prayer and fasting, they turned the elders over to the care of the Lord, in whom they had put their trust.

With prayer and fasting. Fasting.  Oh my. Yes. Fasting.

Fasting is something that we don’t talk about in church as much as should because, well, it’s not fun.  None of us want to fast.  None of us want to give up something.  None of us, in the end, want to do it.

You don’t, I don’t, no one does. It’s not what we’d think about as “fun.”

Yet, in scripture, we see it over and over again as a command. We see it over and over again as something that God’s people are instructed to do. We see it as something that the church is challenged do to. It’s important.


I can just tell you, from my experience, that fasting gives us two major benefits.  First, it drives us to prayer.  When you fast (by the way, fasting, for those that aren’t familiar, is giving up something, normally food, for a time period, to seek God) we are driven to prayer. When you miss that chocolate, pray.  When you miss that coke, pray.   When you miss whatever you give up, pray.  Every time we see fasting mentioned in scripture, it’s in relation to prayer. Fasting is useful in that drives us to pray.

Second, in my experience, when you give up something, you see what really controls your actions. We see that our actions are not controlled by our needs, or many times, by God, we see that our actions are controlled by our desires.  Our wants.  Us.  We aer driven so many times in our lives not by what God wants. But by what we want.

That’s not the way that God wants us to live. That’s not what God has for us. That’s not His desire for us.

So, while it won’t be something that we look forward to doing, I do believe it’s something that can change our lives and our walk with God.  Fasting is still important.

And today, in some way in your life, I pray that you can find a way to experience that gift in your life!


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