IN CASE YOU DIDN'T KNOW: the early church, and all the following generations who honored the practice of fasting, knew what was up. If you want God to move, give up the things that are blocking your vision. Because pro tip: He is always moving and doing His grand thing. Just sometimes we totally miss it because we're too busy being distracted. When all the buzz is taken away and we are left with radio silence, the soft voice of God is a lot easier to hear.
So, last week I felt so out of sorts I grabbed onto this idea of fasting out of pure desperation. I didn't know what to expect, or what would happen, but I wanted to shake something in my heart. Here's the thing: I went through a wild season a little bit ago during which I was so raw and humbled, God and I were, like, super tight. I was walking close because I was afraid I'd drown otherwise. And, honestly, it was awesome. Not the season itself, but the closeness to Jesus.
But then things got better, I got stronger, and I got a little (a lot) cocky. Which felt good until it felt not good. So I fasted. For five days, I turned off my phone and wasn't allowed to spend a single dime. No electronic communication, no spending. I wanted to fast from food, because that's more glamorous, but my roommates and my dad were quick to say, "Nope, that's not it. Pick something else. Something that will actually be a sacrifice." They were right.
Here are some excerpts from my journal this week.
Give up communication and spending. Five days. Lord what if someone needs me? What if I miss seeing someone and the world is thrown of its axis? WHAT IF?
Trust me. Trust me, dear one.
What if I run out of toothpaste or food or something?
Just trust me.
Fasting, or this fast in particular, is about trust. Trusting that God is more in control of my life than I will ever be, and nothing I do will get in the way of Him. Who knew?
Tuesday (day one):
I felt out of sorts because I wasn't getting constant affirmation via texts/likes/comments. When there was a moment of quiet during the day I instinctively reached for my phone.
I also have no idea what I'm supposed to be praying about.
Wednesday (day two):
No phone officially feels like I'm on vacation. I'm sitting at the park right now because I'm trying to listen and I think I felt a nudge. Whether I did or not, this dappled sunlight and soft breeze is making my heart swell in my chest. So thank you, Papa.
[Pause. There was more here, but I'm holding onto it for now. All you need to know is, God is good. Real good. Okay, play.]
When did we lose the freedom to just show up? I remember being seven and waiting on Helen Kennamer's doorstep until she got home and we could play. Why is that socially weird now that I'm twenty-four? Why do I feel like I have to call first? It seems to me that living in community should extend into our living spaces. Mi casa es su casa, for real. [more on this next week.]
Thursday (day three):
Finished 7 and started Scary Close. It's funny-- the only screen I'm not allowed to use is my phone. TV and computer are still fair game. But I'm not drawn to those. And since I'm not distracted by going anywhere or trying to go somewhere, I've noticed I'm hungry for something substantial. For some meat to chew on (good thing I'm not food fasting). These books are making my mind spin. And I've got all the time in the world to gobble them up.
Friday (day four):
Got a free beer from Alex at Taproom because I told him about the fast.
Heard "Every Little Thing (Will be Alright)" on the sunny, breezy drive home and laughed from the pure joy of realizing the truth of those words.
Used MapQuest for the first time in like five years.
Saturday (day five):
Sat in the park at Musician's Corner (God bless Nashville and its free concerts) and couldn't keep a grin off my face. God is good. He is moving, big time. He is showing up and showing off and assuring me, over and over, that He has plans He is working out. I just have to be in tune enough to follow His lead. Praise. So. Much. Praise.
Sunday (fast over):
53 unread emails and 60-something unread texts. Oops. But wallet very happy.