Last year during Holy Week I experienced my first time with fasting. I had been wanting to try this spiritual discipline and so with a lot of thought and prayer, I decided that Holy Week would be a good time. It was an awesome experience. It took every bit of strength to go that week with only liquids to fill my stomach. But it was well worth it. I developed a deeper and greater relationship with my Heavenly Father. By the time Easter morning came I felt open and raw. My emotions were fresh and my mind was clear.
I decided that I would fast again. So over the past few months I have been thinking about when I should. While in the Christian book store after Christmas I came across a book by Jentezen Franklin titled "Fasting". Jentezen is the pastor of Free Chapel in Gainesville, Georgia. He explains in the book that for a few years he fasted for the first 21 days of each year. He found that it made the year start with an opportunity to develop a closer to relationship with God. The relationship became more intimate and powerful. He then felt called to share this with his congregation and so now some from his congregation have started to fast the first 21 days of the year too. They begin on the first Sunday after January 1st. I liked this concept. Starting off the year fasting and in prayer with God.
Due to a family commitment yesterday, I started my 21 day fast today. Just like during Holy Week my family is trying to grasp what I am doing. My husband worries that I will get sick and my son wonders if it means I won't fix supper. I reassure them that everything will be fine. I drink a lot of water, tea, juice, milk and broth based soups. There will be many times that I will be around food, but I know that God will be right there with me. Jesus says that there are 3 things we are to do, give, pray and fast. If Jesus can fast for 40 days with the devil constantly tempting him, I can fast for 21 days. It will be a challenge, but what I have learned in my 44 years is that no matter what you do or don't do, life is going to throw you challenges. But with God I can make it through anything.