I didn’t post yesterday. Did you notice? I didn’t think so. I didn’t “miss” a day — my post withholding was actually intentional. I was called to “break my fast” — temporarily, but entirely — just for an evening.
The intense emotional, physical, and spiritual highs and lows of my last two days have led me to two points of total clarity:
- God’s Kingdom is coming — in a big way — in my life and in the lives of the people around me. His presence is palpable — so obvious. I don’t know how I didn’t see it before.
- The evil one is pissed. (Sorry if you don’t like that word — but it’s apt to describe the downright venomous wrath I’ve felt.) He is launching an all-out attack even more devastating than the pain of loss I feel. It’s clear now — he means to destroy me and everyone I love.
The psychological impact of this back and forth was severe. I spent yesterday working, fighting through my grief with breaks for prayer from my people of peace. It was during one of those prayers that I received clear words from God to temporarily break my fast. I was nervous – so I came home and did a little digging.
Check out Matthew 9:15: “Jesus told them, “When you’re celebrating a wedding, you don’t skimp on the cake and wine. You feast. Later you may need to pull in your belt, but not now. No one throws cold water on a friendly bonfire. This is Kingdom Come!” This translation from The Message was incredibly helpful — God’s presence was already with me in fullness, comforting me, strengthening me, holding me tight when I needed Him. I didn’t need to fast to bring Him near.
Spiritual fasting is not a way to earn God’s favor by getting him to do something for us. Rather, the purpose is to produce a transformation in us—a clearer, more focused attention and dependence upon Him. Yesterday, it also became clear that I was using my Daniel Plan journey as a crutch — a reason for resentment and despair in the face of psychological distress, as I wondered, “Why, God? Why me? Aren’t I being good enough to deserve better?”
So yesterday, with crystal clear direction from God and no guilt whatsoever, I shared a piece of pizza – real, honest to goodness pizza from a local mom-and-pop shop called Ron’s — with my confused but thankful family, cancelled a late-night get-together with Mollie, left my laptop on the couch, and went to sleep by 9 p.m. I am in a very different place today — full of peace and joy, and ready to reconnect with God through my journey after experiencing His abiding love and comfort.
Don’t worry — I’m back on the Daniel Plan trolley, for the right reasons. 🙂 I still feel a distinctive call to continue my journey through the remainder of Lent, and I’m excited about the lasting changes it will bring for me and my family. But God’s love for me is not contingent on my obedience during this journey, or on my understanding of His plan being brought to life in and around me.
I repent, and I fully submit. Here I am again, God — letting go.
(In case you’re wondering, pizza is still just as amazing as it was before — unlike coffee. My digestive tract is in shock, but I’m so thankful for that tasty little gift from Papa.)