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Tuesday, March 15, 2005
Feasting and Fasting
I've been meeting with a group of students each Wednesday through the noon hour (following our Communion Chapel) for a time of teaching, fasting and prayer. We've been conferencing about the practice of fasting and it's been really illuminating. One of the students, Jason, responded to one of my questions with the following insight which has really helped me.

"A second thing that I've noticed through participating in the fasting group and in my "feasting" on Scripture is that the gospel writers seem to connect Jesus' baptism with his time of fasting. Through my understanding, baptism symbolizes the death, burial, and resurrection, and it seems as if this story is connecting this life of God with fasting. Jesus hears the voice of his Father that his Father is pleased with Him, then he goes into the wilderness to live on the words of this voice. The life that we have "is not by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God." Fasting is a time of living on the voice of God."

I had never connected this word-- "This is my beloved son, whom I love," with living on "every word that comes from the mouth of God." Fasting becomes the means of knowing the affirming love of the Father-- which is true sustenance. Something I'm learning in a whole new way these days. I've realized how dependent I am on the fickle opinions of people.

Here's the battle--- My worth = How well I do + What you think of me VS. My worth = Abba, Father, I belong to you.

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posted by John David Walt | at 3/15/2005 11:09:00 PM

 

2 Comments:

Blogger Michel said...

I have long since stopped asking questions like "What does fasting do?" There was a time when I fasted because I thought it would compel him into some kind of action. However, I have since then learned that fasting has to do with "being" and not "doing". It is not a technology that we apply, it is not a program we run, it is a state of being totally dependent on God. It restores our recognition that the our very heart beat depends upon the sustainence of God. It allows us to experience the physical recognition of something beyond ourselves. That thing, as Jason so accurately pointed out, is the Word of God that spoke into the chaos of creation, and was enfleshed in Jesus.

3:08 PM EST  
Blogger Isaac said...

What an insight. As you probably know already, the discipline of fasting has taken on a central role in my journey this year. I still have so many questions, but Jesus' act of feasting on his Father's pleasure and words is such a simple, yet amazing concept that I have completely missed up to now. This completely changes my view of what "fasting" really means.

11:20 AM EST  

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