Fasting Failure

April 10, 2016 at 2:14 PM

Yesterday, day 3 on my juice fast, and it started well. Bible verses were going down like fine wine. Prayer was not one-sided. It was a Saturday so I could spend my whole fasting day in solitude, not forced to tune the Spirit in and out between tasks. I had, staring at the wall time, sitting and just listening time, or reading a verse, sit back and think about what I just read time. I planned nothing. My to do list was empty.

Around noon, I decided to go on a journey.  I made a bunch of juice and drove back in time, to the towns I used to live. I think I did this because I was trying to understand unanswered questions about my past. The first place was a lonely, abandoned railway track that ran through a thickly wooded area just outside a small country town I used to live in. This was a quiet place that provided me years of wilderness where I could walk, fast and pray. All my favorite trees where still there just as I remembered. No hint of city hum invaded this place, only the sound of wind in the trees.  Instead praying in whispers, I could talk aloud to God with no fear of being overheard. I sang and ran a little and raised my hands above my head. A grown child with his Father.

Afterward, I drove to a conservation area outside another town I lived. I sat in my car warming up to go for a walk in the wind and cold. The blue sky was now clouded over; temps had dropped below freezing. An oppressive feeling began to grow inside, displacing the joy I felt on the railway tracks. This place held different memories. A marriage gone bad. A shipwrecked faith. Depression from too much beer and wine.

The bible says do not give the devil a foothold. Footholds has always felt like wounds to me. Most of the wounds self-inflicted, or childhood wounds allowed to become infected by neglect and repeated injuring. Why did I come here? I guess I wanted healing. I tried to walk but the cold wind of guilt and regret drove me back to the sanctuary of my car. I sat in the driver’s seat overwhelmed by oppressive heaviness, all mashed into bad memories of this place. There was no relief. Except the thought of food and beer. The decision was made right then and there. Once made, relief came quickly. It was as if the god of guilt and regret said, “you dare to come here to defeat me? Be a good boy now and drink your beer and eat your food, and I will leave you alone.”

I was a good boy and he was good to his word. At least for the remainder of the night.

This morning I do not awake defeated. I feel a greater determination. I will win this battle. I must. Why? Because the footholds of guilt and regret has not been left back in that conservation area. I carry them inside me wherever I go. And they must be healed. I think identifying them in the first place is half the battle. Fasting forced my enemy to show his hand. And I will be back, more determined to win. And I will not give up until I do. I will walk the paths of that conservation area singing, running a little and raising my hands above my head. A grown but healed child with his Father. 

Posted in: Fasting

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Comments (4) -

Thank you, Ron, for reminding me that the easy thing to do isn't usually the best!

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Canada rlagerquist says:

Well said and so true. In fact the harder it is, often the better the spiritual freedom that follows.

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Failure is such a strong word. I prefer to use the word incomplete. Sometimes we don’t comprehend why things happen to us, but we are not supposed to lean on our own understanding. Life is a journey and we have significant landmarks along the way, some good and some not so good. Instead of beating ourselves up over our yesteryears which intensifies the hurt, we should embrace them and learn from them. More often than not, we have a tendency to go around the mountain again and again carrying all the past junk with us. It’s time to purge our backpacks and travel new trails. We are a new creation in Christ the old has passed away, behold all things have become new.
We may think turning to the things of this world will comfort us when we are suffering, but it never does. Whether it be food, drink, drugs, relationships, money, or whatever…it is never enough. There is only one who can satisfy our hungry and thirsty souls. Going deeper with our Lord and Savior is the answer to all our life struggles. The battle belongs to the Him. The enemy wants to keep us believing that we are still in the chains of our pasts. It is a lie! Believing God’s Word has set us free. It is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. By His stripes we ARE healed. We ARE more than conquerors through Christ Jesus. It has already taken place, a gift given to us, waiting to be opened. In the natural what would it be like to have a gift given to us at Christmas, but we still haven’t unwrapped it years later. Sounds silly doesn’t it, but we all do it. Let’s lift our glasses and give cheers to the greatest gift, and enjoy what our Jesus has done for us! Amen!

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Trinidad and Tobago Roberta Phillip says:

Thanks for these words this morning as I fight to stay the course.

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