Living Our Faith

"And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice -- the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him." Romans 12:1

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Fasting

Posted by on in Past Sermon
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The sermon on Sunday was on the discipline of Fasting. Our Scripture readings were Matthew 6:16-18 and Luke 9:23-27. There are two points from the end of the sermon that I think are worth highlighting now that we are into the third or fourth day of our fast.

First, Fasting is about God. It reminds us that only God sustains us and God satisfies us. Fasting is not about what we give up. It’s about forgoing something in order to feast on God and to pray for a specific purpose. This week we are invited to pray for Teresia and Heritage of Faith. (HERE is a link to the website for Heritage of Faith). As you fast this week, let each craving you have for what you gave up be an invitation to pray for Teresia, Heritage of Faith, and the children. Pray that God will do great things (and continue to do great things) for and through this ministry.

Second, fasting makes us hungry. When we fast we realize how instinctively we reach for that thing we gave up or how often we go to it for satisfaction (often without even thinking). Fasting reveals our weakness to our cravings. But that isn’t all we realize. In our weakness we remember God’s words to Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9) Fasting helps discipline our hunger for things that don’t ultimately satisfy us to be directed toward God who does satisfy.

But that doesn’t mean it's easy. If fasting is new for you, like it is for me, you are probably experiencing that right now.

In the middle of the afternoon on Sunday, when my caffeine headache was in full swing, I walked over to the Keurig coffee maker and turned it on. I waited for the water to boil and then I remembered … no coffee. So I grabbed some snacks, drank water, juice, tried to eat or drink anything to get my mind off my headache. I was hungry for something to satisfy my need for coffee. Nothing worked.

This experience reminded me of the quote that I read before we started this series: “All things are difficult before they are easy.” That is true for fasting and all Spiritual disciplines. For that moment when I remembered that I couldn’t have a coffee all I could think of was my headache and how badly I wanted a coffee … only after the fact did I remember that I was supposed to pray for Teresia in that time. It takes discipline and practice to deny ourselves and to hunger after God.

I hope that your fast is going well this week – that in your weakness you are being drawn to God’s strength and that you are experiencing His true satisfaction. Please be ready to share your experience this Sunday after church or if you chose not to fast (that’s okay!) take some time to listen to the experience of others. And, whether you are fasting or not, please remember to keep Heritage of Faith in prayer and to bring in your sacrifice offering from what you gave up this week to go toward that ministry.

This Sunday our service will be led by Rev. Ken Brown and the service will focus on the discipline of Worship. The Scripture readings are: Isaiah 6:1-8, John 4:13-26.

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  • Guest
    PJK Wednesday, 26 March 2014

    This fasting must be making a small impact......when we brought out the "juice" container one meal, the kids all reacted with "really, I thought we were doing the lent thing". It was then that we poured out the water from the same container.

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