We've identified the tools and tactics on the Road to Pentecost. We've seen the challenges when trying to walk in God's ways and with God's provision. We've recently examined the exponential blessings of the pursuit of God's outpouring in our lives. We enter our final week on the Road to Pentecost by examining how these tools and tactics transform us in our walk with God.
Fasting, especially when done over a prolonged period, changes us. Until we get past around day 3, the power of the flesh and the temptations of the world don't seem as powerful. Once we pass a certain threshold, though, it becomes apparent how tied we are to this world and our flesh. The flesh and this world claw at us and try to break us, not because of hunger or desires for worldly things, but because they don't want us to submit ourselves to God.
However, once we have broken through a certain threshold, we begin to transform. We see things differently because our spiritual vision is no longer blinded by the shroud of fleshly desire. We notice the spiritual war that rages around us. We might not see angels and demons, but we see the affects their conflict has on the society around us. We see the hurting and the lonely that surround us on a daily basis. Their hurts and hangups reveal themselves in their body language and words in ways that normally are hidden. It's truly convicting to know and witness all that goes on around us on a daily basis.
Not only do we see the spiritual wars and casualties of those wars, but we also see the power of God on display, too. We see Him at work in the lives of those that are hurting, knocking at the door of lukewarm and unwilling hearts. We see Him attempting to heal and deliver those who sit in bitterness, resentment and depression. Even still, we see him pouring out his blessings on those who accept Him, including ourselves. And yes, he finds ways to bless those who even reject Him because God loves all and wants all to come to Him.
It's amazing to have such a spiritual perspective opened up to us simply by denying ourselves, and it's completely humbling. To see those who face such troubling and terrible circumstances knowing there is nothing we can do in and of ourselves humbles us. To see the actions of God trying to interact with and work on behalf of those who reject him knowing we couldn't see those things on our own is humbling. To see God pouring Himself out and to know that which I have to give and pour out is so small is humbling.
Thought for the day:
Fasting opens our eyes to the limitations of man and this world so we can humble ourselves and receive those things that God wants to pour out on us.
The great news about being humbled is that we can then start to receive from God that which we need and do that which he desires for us. By seeing that we can't solve all of our problems through an action, decision or push of a button, we turn ourselves to God for our answers. By seeing the specific hurts of those around us, we are able to pray for them specifically and then seek to help them according to the leading of God. When we see the spiritual conflict in our communities, we can know for what to go to God in prayer.
We can do great things in our lives, the lives of those around us and our communities. However, it will only be effective with humility, which comes from seeing clearly our place in this world and the Kingdom of God. Fasting can reveal our place by pulling aside the shroud of flesh and the world and opening our spiritual vision. It's things like this that make the Road to Pentecost and any pursuit of God such a rewarding journey.
Chris Farris is the author of The Way, a manual detailing how to implement the Beatitudes into your life. He review events and other media and offers other insights into writing and working for the Kingdom of God.