Friday, May 31, 2013

How Fast Does A Fast Go? (I'll tell you in a week)

My church is having special revival services next week so my pastor is calling the congregation to a fast. I am good with that because it's scriptural and it has proven to be beneficial, time and again. For those of you unfamiliar with fasting, it's a period of time where we deny our bodies certain things, typically food, for a period of time while we focus heavily on God with prayer, meditation, worship, etc. No big deal, I could skip a few meals if you know what I mean. Two birds, one stone and all that.But he throws a curve ball and says I can have whatever food or caffeinated beverages I want because this is a fast from media. Not a fast from "the" media as in my favorite news outlets but a fast from all media. No TV, radio, video games. No cd's, dvd's or Blu-Ray. Not even leisure reading. If it ain't work related, it ain't happening.

What kind of man is this pastor of mine? I mean, can't he just ask me to give up brussel sprouts or liver & onions? Why does he have to hit me where it hurts, right in the iPad? Really, no  Drudge Report? Nope, no Drudge. 

I know how cranky I can get when I give up food and caffeine. I wonder what kind of withdrawal symptoms I'll have when I am unable to read about all of the killings going on in the world or the scandals in our nations capitol. How will I cope with not seeing "the cutest cat video ever" on YouTube? How do you suppose my attitude will be when I am not infused with a daily dose of NCIS or Criminal Minds? 

Oh, I just realized I won't even get to read your Facebook post about how it's 3am and your mind is racing with so many thoughts that you are unable to sleep so you are up surfing the net. Wait a minute, you don't suppose..., nah, never mind. 

Anyway, hours and hours of stimulation and amusement, gone.  How am I supposed to know what's happening in the world or unwind after a stressful day? How will I keep up with the Kardashians? Okay, I don't follow the Kardashians, but you get my point. A whole week of no media. 

I may have to tear my clothes and pour ashes over my head. What will I do with all of that spare time? I might have to talk with my wife or visit a friend.  I may have to sit in silence for a time and give Him, God, an ear devoid of all of the sounds I'm constantly pumping into it. I may actually have to have a real conversation with someone. Oh, oh, I may actually be forced into reading my bible.

I guess I could look at it as if I am about to find out how "addicted" I am to all of these external sources. Or maybe, possibly, I could get into the spirit of this particular fast and go into it with the expectation that God will move in my life, my family and/or my church. I invite you to join me in this fast. I would love to read your experiences and thoughts about this fast, after it's over, of course.

The author is husband to an amazing wife, father to two beautifully grown daughters and papaw to two of the cutest and smartest kids ever created. He is currently the associate pastor at Tabernacle of Praise in Crestline, Ohio. At present, he is taking a break from his career as a Christian stand-up comic, however, if you would like to discuss him speaking to your church or group, feel free to contact him directly by e-mail at or by phone at 419-961-1265

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