2 “I have compassion on the crowd, because they have been with me now three days, and have nothing to eat;
Read Mark 8:1-10
Fast Until You’re Full
How goes your fast? We are 25 days into Lent, and some of you are fasting, I’m sure. Fasting is an often misunderstood discipline. If you are attempting to fast during these 40 days, always remember that, like He did on the four thousand people in the desert with him, Jesus has compassion on you.
Biblical fasting is always a fast from food for a period of time. Several in the Bible (Moses and Elijah), including Jesus, fasted forty days without food at all. That, is a supernatural fast and not what is meant by fasting as a spiritual discipline. However, a partial fast during a period of 40 days has always been a part of Christian practice. (If you can’t fast a meal for medical reasons, God knows your heart. Fast something else of significance to you)
The Real Purpose of Fasting
Fasting from food by giving up a meal at specific times or days, is probably the only time I recommend we set ourselves up for temptation. Whenever we try to deny ourselves something we are used to, Satan will tempt us with it; you can count on it. But, the whole purpose of fasting is to learn to resist our fleshly desires, and in exchange, connect more with what truly satisfies – the Bread of Life. No matter how tough it gets, don’t give up; fast until you’re full…full of Jesus.
Jesus is the Bread of Life (John 6), and as He said, “…Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matt. 4:4). John also tells us Jesus is the “Word” of God. Jesus, is the very substance we must have to truly live life as it is meant to be lived.
The four thousand who followed Jesus those three days, without regard to food, were fasting from earthly bread, and living in communion with the very Bread of Life. But, Jesus knew they would soon need earthly food to sustain their physical strength, and so He had compassion on them; they received a miraculous feeding. And, He has compassion for you too. Don’t give up on your Lenten fast.
What miracles do you need? Are you tired of your fast? During Lent I find it helpful to re-focus my self on my purpose for fasting; to spend time with the Living Bread. Please know, Jesus has compassion on you too. He is waiting to bless and feed you with his presence. All you need to do is re-focus and draw new water from His well. His well never runs dry. And, no matter how dry you get, no matter how tired or used up you feel, He is always faithful to raise you from the ashes.
Grace & Peace for a Holy Lent,
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.”