My church, like many others around the country, is in the middle of their 21 days of prayer and fasting (on week 2). For the past few years, I have gone hardcore with this. I’ve done juice fasts, Whole30, given up social media, etc. But this year, I felt a little off. While I could use a change in my eating habits, 2020 is the Year of Healthy for me, so I feel like I will have that covered. I hardly watch T.V. anymore, and my social media habits are improving. There was honestly nothing I could think of to sacrifice that would mean anything to me. And because I am already working on building healthy habits, I couldn’t see anything to add immediately.
But during my Bible reading recently, I came across some information about fasting that I have never been taught before.
“Will the fast I choose be like this: A day for a person to deny himself, to bow his head like a reed, and to spread out sackcloth and ashes? Will you call this a fast and a day acceptable to the Lord? Isn’t this the fast I choose: To break the chains of wickedness, to untie the ropes of the yoke, to set the oppressed free, and to tear off every yoke? Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, to bring the poor and homeless into your house, to clothe the naked when you see him, and not to ignore your own flesh and blood? Then your light will appear like the dawn, and your recovery will come quickly. Your righteousness will go before you, and the Lord’s glory will be your rear guard. At that time, when you call, the Lord will answer; when you cry out, he will say, ‘Here I am.’ If you get rid of the yoke among you, the finger-pointing and malicious speaking, and if you offer yourself to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted one, then your light will shine in the darkness, and your night will be like noonday. The Lord will always lead you, satisfy you in a parched land, and strengthen your bones. You will be like a watered garden and like a spring whose water never runs dry.” Isaiah 58: 5-11 CSB