Love hearts fasting for God

by Craig on February 22, 2012

I never fasted before, but now...now I heart fasting...and this is why

It begins with no food…just water.

It derives from a Germanic word…
the root of which means…

to hold, to keep, to observe or to restrain.

I remember when I was child, a Catholic.
I knew I needed to fast for one hour before communion.
I figured it was so Jesus wouldn’t get mixed up with the food. ¯\(°_o)/¯

I’m fasting today because I’m linking with Ann…

…and we’re considering the spiritual habit of fasting.

So I begin without food, but glom up research.
I hunger to know what fasting is.
Three hours in I have a good idea…

and I’m seriously craving food.

I graduated from a Protestant Seminary, and I respect nothing on earth more than our Bible, but I respect Catholic Doctrine in regards to what’s in the pages.

The reading room in the Vatican Library

source

The Catholic Church has been studying the Bible since the Bible was put together – and that’s more than a 1000 year head start on Protestant study. We Protestants disregard this too often, as if Christianity began in the 1400’s. I think we do this to our detriment.

The Catholic fast basically allows for one meal a day…
at about the middle of the day…and it excludes meat…but not fish.

I never got that part…
I always wondered…
what’s so special about fish? ¯\(°_o)/¯

Anyway…

There’s no set limit on how big this meal can be.

Whosoever therefore eats a hearty or sumptuous meal in order to bear the burden of fasting satisfies the obligation of fasting. Any excess during the meal mitigates against the virtue of temperance, without jeopardizing the obligation of fasting.

Immediately I think, “What’s ‘mitigate?’” ¯\(°_o)/¯

Webster’s tells me it’s to ease the burden of something…
but when it’s “mitigate against” it means to do battle with something…

in this case “the virtue of temperance”.

I never fasted before, but now...now I heart fasting...and this is whysource

I don’t want to do that! I heart the virtue of temperance.

And a fast is more than just avoiding eating.

Four hours into the fast I meditate…ponder…reflect.

My mind sees Our Lord…
teaching by the Sea of Galilee…
healing the sick…
greeting Mary and Martha with a holy kiss…
and then…

I see the cross…

my heart stops…
overwhelmingly sad…
eyes tear up…
and I’m sorry, really sorry…
that Our Lord had to do that because of me.

It’s the first real benefit of the fast…
but bigger and better are to come.

I didn’t think I’d heart fasting much…
but I heart it now…
big puffy heart it…

and yes!!! that IS a cake!!!!

source

I have to share this with you…

and as I do…

if you don’t already…

I think you’ll come to heart fasting too.

There is much much more…

and much much more holy…

please come back.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Kris February 22, 2012 at 10:11 am

Craig~ I have practiced fasting for many years now and I too, love the practce of it. Though I find it challenging quite often, the rewards for the scarifice well exceeed the difficulty. I am always closer to Him and stronger at the close of a fast, and always more thankful for the journey. Looking forward to hearing your big puffy heart on this practice. 😉 Blessings, brother.

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Craig February 22, 2012 at 10:18 am

And that heart is cake!!!!!! Nom!!!!!!! And I big puffy heart that you were here…GOd bless you Krissie…I’m heading over to your place….right…..about……now……

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Nacole@sixinthesticks February 22, 2012 at 12:26 pm

oh my. you have me intrigued to know more. i cant believe you left it that way! *wink*.

i really enjoyed the info on the Catholic faith and the way they do fasting. sounds sober and thoughtful. since my fast was a failure, im really curious about your experience. here is my story:

http://sixinthehickorysticks.blogspot.com/2012/02/maybe-epic-fast-fail-is-really-doing.html

blessings and *prayers* for you.

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Craig February 23, 2012 at 12:00 pm

I’ll be writing about these two days of fasting for a while because God stuffed a whole ton of stuff in them. I think it’s a good thing that I’ll have all of this spiritual ammunition recorded. I really hope I don’t insult anyone with my adopting of the Catholic stance on fasting – it’s biblical – and it used to be much more severe but they’ve loosened it up since the 60s – before then it was only water I think– so they have adopted the spirit of the law approach on this instead of the letter of the law approach – I heart that! Blessings to you to Mississippi (◕‿◕)

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Cora February 22, 2012 at 12:44 pm

I know NOTHING about fasting and am eager to learn more. This was so good, Craig, and so informative. I didn’t even know that the Catholic faith had anything to do with fasting, etc. I feel so ignorant in all of this — is it for ME, for God, for others — the purpose, the end result, why, when, etc., etc. And though I always wanted to know more, I didn’t know where to look or who to trust. Each author came from different slants, so I never pursued my questions. Looking forward to this study!

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Craig February 23, 2012 at 12:06 pm

Cora, I hope you realize how much you are missed you are gone – you’re worried about – and you’re missed. And I miss the regular servings of your wisdom – you’re a wise chick (◕‿◕)

and I go to the Catholic stance because the Protestant stance is all over the map – I agree with what you said – people taking verses out of context – and passages of Scripture out of context to support this or that argument – you get lost in all the different ways to fast – the Catholic stance is (for once) actually simpler – closer to God – depriving of the material to gain the spiritual – and I heart that they allow for it to be broken – but not quite broken. Spirit of the law!!

My breakfast this morning – oh. So. Nice. NOM!!

God bless you Cora!!

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Livia February 22, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Craig, there are so many things to fast from, and different seasons for each, aren’t there? One can fast from spending for a while, or from people, or from any number of things, for a purpose, as one is called. It is interesting that food has been the primary fasting object. It shows how much we cleave to food, perhaps?

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Craig February 23, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Livia, I think there’s a big difference in “fasting” – and giving something up for Lent. One is long-term – the other short term – both have the same principle – but they ARE different – I’m not giving anything up for Lent by the way – but this little two day fast – I can’t describe how amazing it was – actually I can – I’ll be doing it for the next few weeks right here (◕‿◕) one thing that the lack of food DOES do – and I’ll explain this more through my experience – it creates hunger – and if it goes along with spiritual hunger – the one kind of drives the other – if that doesn’t make sense – hang in there – I’ll be writing about it. God bless you Livia.

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Kristin February 22, 2012 at 2:33 pm

I heart fasting too! It has never become easy, but it is always fully satisfying. Never do I feel closer to my Lord than when I am fully there with no food in between.
I’ll be back to read more from you:)

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Craig February 23, 2012 at 12:23 pm

Kristin, if all of my fasting experiences in the future are as satisfying as this one has been in the present – it’ll be well worth it – this is my first actual fast – so much happened during this two day fast – so much insight – I’ll be writing about it for weeks. God bless you Kristin, God bless you my friend!

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Tracie February 22, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Fasting is such an amazing thing. It is a powerful way to draw closer to God, and really focus in on Him.

I think the research you did regarding the Catholic teachings on fasting is really interesting. I’m going to have to read up more on that (and yes, why fish? I have wondered that too!)

That cake is fabulous. I need one!

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Craig February 23, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Tracie – I think the fish thing has something to do with “flesh” – meaning animal flesh – which is kind of the same as human flesh – and I think that’s what’s being avoided – in some of the stuff I read it talked about non-flesh meat like fish. If you study that more I promise to come read it – and make sure you tell me about it – I might study it one day but there’s a whole gigantic list of things I want to study – I’d heart reading what you find out though!

And that cake! How many shades of awesome is that cake! Trust me – it was a lot of shades of awesome for someone fasting (◕‿◕)

oh, and my prediction for once upon a time – the Prince charming/snow white thing – well – they may not get together a long, long, time. Because they’re the key to the whole thing. Funny how we haven’t seen that Jiminy Cricket guy – and I’m fine with that – he didn’t poll well in my focus group. (◕‿◕) I heart you watch that show! Also, I first had this theory that the guy on the motorcycle was an older version of the Queen’s son – but then this romantic thing going on between him and Emma – that brings up way too many ramifications. Just my two cents for a fellow fan – God bless you!

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Lisa Maria February 27, 2012 at 8:56 am

Hi Craig…catching up on my reading so I’m the last one here. I’m a practicing cradle catholic and this post was very interesting. You made me want to do my own research. I’ll get back to you on that. Meanwhile I just wanted to share a thought with you that I’ve learnt somewhere in my youth or childhood. “Starve the body to feed the soul”. What fasting actually does is spiritually cleanse you so that you are open to the Holy Spirit and He can work in you. At least, that’s been my experience. Thanks for sharing this and I think I’ll join you all on Wednesday with my own post. So good to see everyone’s perspective.

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Craig February 27, 2012 at 1:53 pm

thank you Lisa Maria, starve the body to feed the soul – it was my experience too. I’m so glad I took notes as well – way too much for one blog post – I can’t wait to share it all – me – a non-Catholic – and I’ll be sharing meditations upon the stations of the cross. Please make sure you swing by and remind me when your post is up – I don’t want to miss it! God bless you Lisa Maria – and happy week after your anniversary!

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