“After fasting forty days and forty nights, [Jesus] was hungry.” (Matthew 4:2)
You couldn’t accuse the Bible of overstating the facts.
I wonder, when Jesus fasted in the desert (and, like, really fasted – none of this after 2 p.m. stuff), what was Day 16 like? Was it silent? Was he doing all the talking?
I’ve heard some new, interesting testimonials of fasts gone wrong – or even fasts started for the wrong reasons. We do enjoy The Fast in this country. The kind that “melt away your middle” or “flush your flub.” We love to hope in the quick fix for our deeply ingrained, long-term problems. I read Lysa TerKeurst’s Made to Crave last year about “Satisfying your deepest desire with God, not food.” Some powerful stuff in there. If you have EVER: grabbed a snack because you were disappointed, sad, or mad; said “I’ll start my diet on Monday”; checked the scale two or more days in a row, this book is for you.
Although I’m not doing this for the physical outcome, I was reminded of this book when I started to feel goooood about this weight loss. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with that, but it started to push its way into my mind as a motivation, instead of my original desire to put God first.
It was good to pull out Made to Crave again and see what TerKeurst had to say. She refers to Ephesians 1:17-19 as motivation for pursuing healthy lifestyle changes:
I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. (Ephesians 1:17-19 emphasis added)
My take-aways from the emphasis added:
- “I keep asking” This isn’t a one-time genie in the bottle type of prayer, this is asking God daily to be at the centre of this. I keep asking not because He’s not listening, but because I need the reminder.
- “So that you may know him better” If there is any other motivation, it will be an empty one. If not to hear from our glorious Father and be in His will, then why?