It is quite amazing, when you set out to seek the Lord in much more prayer and petition with fasting, how much your flesh just fights you tooth and nail. I woke up today jittery, cranky, frustrated to no end, disagreeable, sore, hungry, and simply NOT in the Spirit. Turns out fasting, like many spiritual disciplines, is not a magic trick. You don’t just abstain from food for a day and float off into a mount of transfiguration scene where God’s voice automatically thunders from on high! No, poor Christian, it doesn’t work like that.
Here’s how it does work: your body wants to eat, so it turns on you with hunger pangs and lack of energy. So you, in all your wisdom, drink lots of coffee and juice and liquids usually containing sugar and come out wired and jumpy. JUMPY! Anyway, just like toxins and other junk in your digestive track gets flushed out during these prolonged fasts, so does your spiritual junk. And you have to feed the spiritual man much more in this season. The fleshy self has to go though.
The spirit-dump. That’s what we’ll call it. You can use “spirit-flush” if that is too graphic.
But that is what needs to happen in these early stages. I sat in our morning prayer at the church today off-kilter and angry at other brothers and honestly didn’t want to pray that much. And then it hit me: the beginning of all these fasts start first and foremost with ME. My junk. My sin. My selfishness. My inflexibility. My hot buttons. My stupidignorantdumbmeanproblematic SELF. And if you don’t watch out, the fast never accomplishes anything until God gets you broken and moldable. So, I guess, bring it on Lord. Help me die to myself…AGAIN!
Let’s keep charging on. This too, usually within the first few days, shall pass.