Taking A Break

“So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes. Daniel” 9:3

Fasting is an ancient Christian tradition, but one we seldom use today.  However, it occurs to me that a fast can be a way of “taking a break” or resting from our usual activities.  The point, of course is to use our time of fasting to grow spiritually.

You may think of fasting as giving up food, or certain foods for a set time.  Some Christians choose to fast during Lent, and give up coffee, soda or desserts.  This can certainly have some health benefits, and can serve as a reminder that Lent is a season of repentance.

But there are many other ways to fast.  If you attend a Via de Cristo retreat weekend, you will be asked to put away your phone, and leave other electronic devices at home.  This allows the participants to focus on God and spiritual matters, laying everyday concerns aside for a few days.  Some people also choose to fast from phones and screens for certain hours every day, so that they can pray, meditate or just slow down and be still.

If you’re an avid reader, as I am, you can decide to fast from secular reading for a while.  You can fast from television, video games, or anything else that distracts you from your spiritual life, or tempts you to sin.  You can fast from eating out or recreational shopping and use the time and money you save to volunteer or donate to a worthwhile charity.

Almost any fast you undertake will cause some discomfort– but in another post, I talked about the fact that the times we grow generally are uncomfortable ( Are you Comfortable?)

Christians aren’t called to sit still.  We’re called to go.  Fasting can be a way to see what going somewhere different might look like.  It can be a way of retiring from the rat race for a while and seeing the real race that Paul spoke about in the book of 2 Timothy:

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

So, think about this idea.  Take a break from something.  It may change your whole life!

 

2 thoughts on “Taking A Break

  1. Pingback: A Different Kind of Fast | Lutheran Ladies Connection

  2. Pingback: Take a Breath | Lutheran Ladies Connection

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