"Our addiction to filling space and our discomfort with truth make the discipline of fasting challenging. A pervasive cultural myth says that if we are well-adjusted people, we will be happy all the time. A common religious myth tells us a similar lie - that God will make everything easy and peaceful. These myths have impressed on our hearts the lie that if we are experiencing discomfort, we're doing something wrong or God has abandoned us.
"Fasting involves discomfort, sometimes the physical discomfort of hunger, other times the discomfort of disregarding our desire for media or shopping or some other treat. Our culture tells us that discomfort indicates something is wrong. Yet as we fast, we affirm the opposite. Fasting acts out our commitment to the belief that there is more to life than transitory fulfillment of the moment's needs or wants. Ultimately fasting affirms that God loves us and desires that we draw near to him.
"Because fasting is so profoundly counter-cultural, it may feel uncomfortable at first... But we can continue to numb ourselves with a fast-paced life and endless indulgences; or we can embrace the challenge of creating space that might feel uncomfortable at times but will deepen our capacity for rich joy and powerful prayer. Fasting brings us that challenge."
--Lynne Baab, "Fasting"
Book Review: Nothing to Envy
1 week ago