C.S. Lewis said, "In God there is no hunger that needs to be filled, only plenteousness that desires to give."[1]

Jesus talks in different places about a Father who likes to reward His Children. Did you have a parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle who you always were glad to see? Do you remember that one who was usually encouraging and seemed to genuinely like you? The reward of being with them paid off in a lifetime of affirmation and acceptance.

Matthew 6:
16 “When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

In the matter of fasting, Jesus does not paint a dismal picture. When a personal fast is secret, there are rewarding outcomes. I had a dreadful idea about fasting. When I was alone on a personal retreat, I found myself feeling weak and more tempted by the flesh than usual.

It may be that God’s silent presence was not undesired; it is more likely the fear of being alone with myself is what I ran from.

You will have to face your weaknesses when you fast. It’s important to understand that this is a good thing and that you will find it rewarding if you use the time to pray, worship and rest with the Lord.

Let’s explore ways that fasting can be rewarding.

[1] C.S. Lewis: Life, Works, and Legacy, p.126, Praeger Publishers 2007