This blog is part of our Every Nation London “24ten” – ten days of prayer & fasting to see “Gods Kingdom come, His will be done, in London and our church.”
One side effects of fasting is loosing stacks of weight quickly. Most of us need/want that. Problem is, fasting never leads to permanent weight loss unless you add some good discipline of healthy diet, some exercise, and drinking loads of water as a regular daily routine.
But most of us also need to loose weight in other ways. Its been amazing what I have been able to go without during this fasting time. I have walked past so many shops/cafe’s (I never realisised that there were SO MANY of them around EVERYWHERE!) with delicious goodies displayed in the window, when usually at least half of them would have tempted me to enter, buy, and consume. I have resisted, and lived to tell! Lately I have been conscious of something when wandering into various stores – Clothes, electronics, DIY, bookshops, airport duty free – and just having thoughts like “I don’t really need this” and “the one I’ve got is good enough and still works” and “I’ve already got one/a few of those, havent I?” – just a inner nudge to be be sensibly restrained rather than just consuming for consuming’s sake.
I also watched part of a program on anorexia on telly last night, and of course that is the flip-side of losing weight, of whatever kind. Some people get “spirit-anorexia” or “soul-anorexia” – not very pleasant. I am not proposing being a miser, but at least in fasting let us consider the disciplines we need to embrace so that we dont just put all the weight back on again. If you do this, fasting will become a great weight-loss program….
The writer to the Hebrews recognised that we can all carry “weight” of many kinds which will hinder us in life, and has some good advice: Hebrews 12: 1-3 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.