How many of you have seen those little signs or T-shirts or memes on Instagram with the beautiful image of Jesus in the cradle and the words “The Reason for the Season”? For years I would see them and have a little twinge of guilt. I was wracked with stress and worry and my mind and heart was far from “The Reason for the Season”.
A fast isn’t necessarily about food, it can be about activities. It can be about giving. Think about what is stressing you out the most right now. Is it time? Finances? Health? Family? Often, as we live in worry and fear, we forget how to invite God into that space. Fasting is supposed to act as a reminder to bring God back into focus and trust Him with our lives. The question then becomes, what would work best for you?
Since I struggled with emotional eating for so long, it still draws me closer to God every time I fast from certain foods, especially sweets. It reminds me to invite Him in to be my comforter and provider. Another fast that I love to do, is a prayer fast. I tend to be very jealous of my time. In the last episode I taught about scarcity vs abundance mentality and how a scarcity mentality around anything is very unhealthy. When I do a prayer fast, I set aside more time to pray and meditate on scripture. As I do that, I rest in God’s provision of time and energy to get everything done that I might need to do. It is so liberating to give those things up to God and let Him be the one in control.
I am now going to give you a list to consider. It is a list of things people might do as a fast during advent. Keep in mind two things as we go over this list: What seems to raise your stress level the most during the Holidays and what do you have a scarcity mentality about? Inviting God into that space will also help you truly reconnect with the reason for the season because you will be constantly reminded of how Jesus built the bridge allowing you to have a relationship with God.
So, here is your list.
For advent you could fast from:
Cell Phones use during certain times of day
Certain Food Items
Remember, the goal is to draw closer to God and stay focused on the reason we are celebrating this special time of year.
You don’t have to let a lot of people know. In fact, keeping it private makes it more about you and God and less about making a statement or what other people think.
This is one of my favorite times of year. In a few days, my little family will begin our own advent calendar of activities and I pray it is full of God’s blessings as we draw closer to the Prince of Peace.
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by Lora Armendariz
You Can Do It!
Do you want to fall out of love with a destructive habit? The first 42 episodes of this podcast are a resource for anyone who wants encouragement and information as they take a six week break from a habit in order to fall out of love with it.