Sunday, February 3, 2008

Fasting Lesson #1

Many of you may or may now know that every February and September our family goes on a consumerism fast - not because we are more holy or strong in faith, but because we are weak and desperately need a period of refreshing and rejuvenation. Between the hours of TV, stops at McDonalds, trips to the mall and thoughts of the next drive to Starbucks we seem to loose our vibrant and constant need for our "living water" - - our savior. John and I often don't listen to what the Lord is telling us because we don't make time. Our priorities waiver and we fall into a rut of being content with God instead of Alive In Him! We miss many opportunities to show love to our children, friends and even strangers. We ignore or miss discerning moments and our prayer lives become stagnant and uniform -- boring and ineffective.

For me, this current fast was much anticipated, I actually looked forward to taking a step back and really looking at the thoughts and activities that consume my day. Many well intentioned "I just need a break" or "I deserve this" moments filled a 24 hour period. Over the last three days I've been challenging my prayer life, the conversations I have with Drew, and the way I allow my mind to drift to negative thinking. God has already been showing me areas of growth that will increase my love for Him and those around me.

My first lesson learned is that my prayers DO matter to God! My prayers are to be real and authentic, not quick and repetitious. How appropriate that the first thing I learn goes hand and hand with fasting (the giving up of or doing without). Now, instead of watching tv while nursing Gabe: I am able to pray for those things most heavy on my heart – the salvation of our children, the nature or aroma of our home, strength for my husband, etc. There is nothing more important that a woman can bring to her home than prayer, “for the effective prayer of a righteous woman can accomplish much.” Roman’s 12:12 says that we are to “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” Philippians 4:6 says “to be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”

So, here as I journal, I give thanks to my God with joy in my heart: for this February month of fasting! "May I draw hear to You or Lord and may Your hearts desire become my hearts desire!”
I love these words from a Fernando Ortega song called "A prayer for our home"
May our home be a refuge for our love, A harbor for our deepest prayer.
May we come to flourish in the grove, Grow ever nearer to You there.

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