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Fasting and Sabbath

It was such a privilege to be a part of the Inspire Lenten Study Group as we focused on fasting. But it was also a challenge! We talked about many of the spiritual disciplines as well as fasting.

Someone in the study group suggested that sabbath might be a communal holy set apart time that is a sacred gift. It got me thinking about a connection between fasting and sabbath. And I confess that I am not always very good at either.

God initiated the sabbath as a day of rest after exercising his creative power for 6 days. Every day he took a sabbath ‘moment’ to stop and look at what he had made and saw that ‘it is good.’  But God rested on the 7th day. He fasted from the very good creative ‘work’ but he enjoyed an equally creative time through the power of restoration and enjoying all he had made. Maybe fasting is not just about stopping something but about being ready to receive something. 

What is more God did not do that alone. God created man on the sixth day, so His first sabbath was in fellowship with humanity. Which also means that the first day that man experienced was sabbath with God. 

So, what if I need to flip sabbath around? It is not supposed to be work work work and then rest. It should be resting and healing in fellowship with one another as we enjoy receiving the fullness of God’s presence and love together. Then that will become the overflow into the next six days of the week until there is a seamless rhythm of the presence and power of God. 

As I walk in this season between Easter and Pentecost and beyond, I think that Jesus is inviting me to continue the disciplines of fasting and prayer that I began in Lent. I feel like they are the means of grace that I need to help me cultivate a better rhythm of sabbath-moments through every day of the week, sabbath-rest in the fellowship of my faith-family, and an ongoing overflow of the presence and power of God from his heart to mine, to ours, to others. 


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