I remember my Mom fasting. She was a Methodist minister. She never spoke of it unless asked. And Foster acknowledges in Celebration of Discipline that fasting is often "a private matter between the individual and God."
"If you call attention to your fasting, people will be impressed and, as Jesus said, that will be your reward".
The main reason for fasting must center on God. Will other benefits follow such as success and prayer, guidance with decisions, christian growth? Perhaps. But the motivation must be pure. "It is the only way we will be saved from loving the blessing more than the Blesser."
I have practiced fasting, with the best of intentions. Yet, after reading this chapter in Celebration of Discipline I realized that my intentions were not what they should have been. I was seeking guidance for a family issue. I succeeded in my fast, physically, but failed spiritually because my desires were selfish. No wonder I didn't receive an answer! I am still struggling with the same issue.
I am inspired and motivated to continue practicing the discipline of fasting. Foster explains that "more than any other discipline, fasting reveals the things that control us." Awesome. The things that control us are sometimes hard for us to see. Others may see them clear as day but we can be blinded to them. And here is a way that God will reveal them to us so we can conquer them with His help and be transformed into His image. hALLELUJAH!
This is so true..."We cover up what is inside us with food and other 'good' things but in fasting these things surface. "
Psalm 69:10 "I humbled my soul with FASTING".
Matthew 4:4 (New International Version)
"Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'"
"Food does not sustain us. God sustains us."
Once again, what the world teaches us is drastically different than what the Bible says.
wHICH dO yOU fOLLOW?
"Fasting helps us keep our balance in life. How easily we begin to allow non essentials to take precedence in our lives. How quickly we crave things we do not need until we are enslaved by them."
I will confess...that new Cherrios Cheddar Snack Mix has enslaved me! But I'm working on it :)