Skip a meal

Years ago I had a dear LDS friend who came over for lunch. As soon as she entered, she set a V8 on the V8counter and told me she couldn’t eat with us because she was fasting. Then she asked, “Have you ever fasted? You should.”

Though I believe her heart was sincere, I immediately bristled. Every church is different, but my (Christian) background has been to never share that kind of thing because of the warning in Matthew 6. It’s understood that we conceal tithing (verse 3) and fasting (verses 16-18) because if you do it as to be seen — you already have the full extent of your reward.

Living with an almost superstitious belief that if our tithe is discovered — our blessing will be immediately, irrevocably removed, creates a hesitancy to even mention the issue. Honestly this is to our detriment, so I’m just going to say it: You should tithe, be sleeping with your spouse and fasting (regularly.) I actually didn’t make the middle one up.

Of course, how your individual fast looks is left to you and the Holy Spirit. You can skip a meal, several meals, drink juice or coffee, or simply eliminate specific things for a time.

Reasons to fast:

  • You need a breakthrough spiritually, emotionally/mentally or physically
  • You want to be reminded of your humanity
  • You are struggling with a sin
  • You need clarity or direction
  • You want reset your priorities

The first time I ever successfully fasted I listened to Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale’s pastor Bob Coy’s message How to Fast over my lunch hour.

Things I do wrong when I fast:

  • Get irritable with my kids (Shut up! I’m trying to please God here!)
  • Drink too much coffee
  • Forget to ask for help from God

And the biggest/worst one:

  • Try to stay so busy and distracted that I actually forget to spend even one minute praying

4 thoughts on “Skip a meal

  1. Erin Taylor Young says:

    Hilarey, I love this post! I wish people would talk about fasting more (in this kind of teaching/encouraging way, I mean). I’m so glad you addressed it. Where have all the spiritual disciplines gone?

  2. Becky Lyles says:

    Good thoughts, Hilarey! Reminds me that I haven’t fasted in a while. Fasting is good for our bodies and minds as well as our spirits. I think more clearly when I fast. Hmm. Maybe fasting would be good to do before starting writing projects.

Please share your heart. We learn from each other.