One of my favorite concepts that I’ve learned as an adult is the idea of unlearning the toxic behaviors we have accumulated during our lives. I know I have a TON. I won’t make y’all read through my pages and pages of Ki Unlearning Stuff though (Book coming soon? Lol, just kidding.) Anyway, I have recently learned that some personal things may have to be tweaked a little, but some things are just flat out WRONG. I see this often, sadly, in the things we’ve learned in church. Now we can talk all day about that, but for now I want to focus on the topic of fasting.
*Cue classic Ki Component format - word definition to begin blog post*
Gerund or present participle: fasting
Abstain from all or some kinds of food or drink, especially as a religious observance.
This topic was heavy on my heart because, lately, I’ve felt a bit spiritually off balance. Not because I’m just out here committing sin galore, but because when I’m overwhelmed by life, my first instinct is to abandon my responsibilities, get in the bed, and either turn on the TV, scroll on social media, or both. Now, I know what I’m supposed to do, but sometimes I just do what’s easier in the moment. After evaluation, I gathered that there’s some type of disconnect between God and I, and when I feel like that, I know it’s time to intentionally reconnect via conversation with Him. What extraneous noise can I eliminate so that I can hear You clearer? How can I lean into You even more than I’m doing now God? I ask myself all the questions that will lead to me getting back on track.
Gotta love being blessed with the gift of self-awareness. Lol. The gift that keeps on giving.
As I was studying, I came across several examples of fasting in the Bible. However, rather than highlighting each one that I came across, I want to focus on WHY they were fasting. Each instance fell into one of these categories.
- Seeking assistance/guidance from God
- Focusing on God’s purpose for your life
- Repenting for past sins (a new one)
All these things apply, in more ways than one, so I feel comfortable and confirmed that I’m headed in the right direction. Super encouraging, always.
On the other side, I know for a FACT I have gone about fasting incorrectly. I came across this scripture and was like “Yikes.”
When you fast, a stop becoming sad-faced like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces so they may appear to men to be fasting. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But you, when fasting, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that you may not appear to be fasting to men but only to your Father who is in secret. Then your Father who looks on in secret will repay you.
LOOK AT ME. LOOK AT ME. I’M FASTING! Lol that’s basically what I did. Lol. Not because I wanted to brag, but it was due to being excited about the idea of fasting: this thing that super saved people do. Just loud and wrong. However, when you know better, you do better. Fasting is not to impress others, to prove you’re saved, or even to compensate for a sin you took part in. It must be for the correct reasons.
I’ll be going into this fast with a more thorough understanding and I’m literally anticipating the amazing things that God is going to do through it. I’m most excited about it being an intimate experience between Him and me, and me getting even closer to Him in the process. Because when we sacrifice our flesh in order to strengthen our spirit we are living out Luke 4:4. Jesus showed us on the cross that there is no greater sacrifice one can make that is greater than the sacrifice of our flesh.