A Passage and A Prayer 3/15/19



All the days of the oppressed are bad, but a cheerful heart has a continual feast. Better a little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure with turmoil.  Better a dish of vegetables where there is love than a fattened ox with hatred. [Proverbs 15] 

More is always better, right? More toys, more money, more stuff. Jesus paints a different picture. Better to be with God than to be without God. No matter how much stuff we have, what matters is that we have Jesus with us. Fasting is an ancient practice of abstaining from our wants to focus on our needs. Fasting is giving up worldly goods for the sake of heavenly treasures.

I remember going to a third world country and seeing the smiles of pure joy on children’s faces, so glad to be alive even though they have nothing. Contrast that with the needy demands of children who have everything they want and more. We could all use the reminder of how deeply God is providing for all of our needs. We don’t *need* food and water every day, and we very rarely give thanks every day for these gifts. There is no better way to be reminded than to go without by fasting.
 
Challenge: Go on a fast today. It doesn’t have to be food, although food and water are the most basic. Give up something today, and every time you *want* it, pray to God, giving thanks that you have access to these things on a regular basis. You could give up your cell phone, television, news, or anything that you feel like you *need* to get through your day. And go to God in those times. You might just find much more satisfaction than you could have imagined.
 
Jesus, You provide for our needs- even the ones we don’t know we have. Give us grateful hearts for the abundant life You have given us. More than that, let our lives overflow with thankfulness, and strengthen us as we fast this day. In Your name, Amen.


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