“Many things I have tried to grasp, and have lost. That which I have placed in God’s hands, I still have.”
~ Martin Luther
The idea of fasting has often appealed to the part of my Type B personality that leans a little towards Type A.
Fasting sounds like a sure fire way to get God’s attention, doesn’t it?
I figure if I deprive myself of food or chocolate (oh, no!), God will really know I’m serious about something.
The thing is, fasting something the body craves to eat pales in comparison to fasting a dream or a desire.
Yes, sometimes, that is exactly what God has called us to do — fast a dream.
When Life Throws A Wrench
Before last year, I never saw my life as the thing God wanted me to fast.
Previously, I had a practice of fasting regularly, to ask God to help me through the rough seasons in my life. I often used fasting as a way to strengthen and calm myself, when I faced challenges that were too big to handle.
One of the big burdens I had been carrying for a many years, was the struggle to find purpose in everyday life.
I felt my life didn’t seem to match up with my passions. Life seemed to chuckle at me, whenever it threw a wrench into my plans to pursue my dreams.
I figured I had been pretty patient, but my turn seemed to take too long. I felt I had been pretty faithful, considering everything I’d gone through and how long I’d been waiting.
When was God gonna come through for me? I wondered.
A Lifegiving Fast
Thank God, one day, He revealed a greater meaning of fasting, that took me to a new level of looking at my life.
I was reading Tammy Maltby’s book, “Lifegiving”, when my heart stopped at this line —
“You may need to fast a dream or a desire during a given season of your life. Immediately, you might be wondering how you can fast something you love for a season of your life.”
Tammy got my attention!
“Perhaps, you must fast a dream you long to see fulfilled, a loving marriage relationship, the priviledge of becoming a parent, or a ministry you have always desired to have.
No matter what the fast may be, it is always connected to what we secretly desire and deeply love.“
I learned that God’s bigger picture of fasting, went beyond what I wanted to get out of it.
God was letting me know, fasting with my life is sacrifice He was asking me to trust Him with.
My season of waiting suddenly took on a powerful significance that gave my everyday life meaning and purpose.
A Fresh Pair Of Eyes
The kind of fasting God has in mind is very different from how we often see it used. It’s not an act of deprivation, to send a message to the top, in an effort to bend a powerful deity to notice or care about us.
Fasting also wasn’t given to us as a means to show off piety and restraint — although those might characterize some who do it.
God’s intention of fasting helps us let go of ourselves more — out of a trust that He cares and values our precious dreams — so that He can take hold of us more.
Fasting is an oxymoron – a ceasing of our own activity, to increase God’s activity in us.
Once I saw my dreams in waiting as an opportunity for God to use me, I fasted, out of trust.
I saw my everyday life with a fresh pair of eyes.
I found joy knowing my fast will end one day, when God says it’s time. I haven’t been forgotten.
How is God asking you to fast your life and trust Him?
How has God used you, as you fast for a season?
I know God is doing great things with our lives! The results of fasting isn’t a sad face, but a powerful passion that will touch and make a difference in the people around us, as He works in us!
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?
Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter —
when you see the naked, to clothe him?” (Isaiah 58:6-7)
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