One of the strangest of God’s messengers was the prophet Ezekiel. God asked him to do many strange things including this:
God gave Ezekiel a message for Israel. He was instructed to write it down and then eat it. There is something going on when God’s word is ingested deep inside us. When we consume God’s Word it becomes a message to others.
There are many examples in the Scriptures of food or drink being tied with spiritual significance. With bread and wine we remember the Lord’s death. The Old Testament sacrifices involved much food and drink. Prescribed times of fasting are followed by feasts. The Lord’s return will be celebrated with a great feast.
A biblical fast is characteristically the skipping of meals and sometimes water to focus time in prayer. While it is entirely appropriate to fast from other activities or habits, it will leave us empty and frustrated if we do not also focus on why we have chosen to fast.
Jesus experienced all the same appetites and temptations as any human being. It’s interesting how fasting alone brought him face to face with temptation. The Devil came as Jesus fasted in the Wilderness for forty days and nights. At one point, he was tempted by Satan to turn the stones on the ground into bread.
The Enemy will pervert a normal hunger into a spirit-robbing hunger. What will you compromise in order to fill the emptiness you are feeling? Jesus had come to understand that hearing from God was necessary if he were to truly live the fullness of God’s plan. Food is good and blessed, but it is not enough to be fully alive. There is a sumptuous feast of Holy Words from God’s mouth. That’s what makes you alive!
As Jesus practiced prayer and fasting, he discovered a great source of strength for life. One time, he was so pre-occupied with caring for the Samaritan woman at the well that he missed a meal. The disciples caught up to him and were quite concerned that he had not eaten.
If we dare to fast in the way Jesus did, we will find that our soul is nourished. There is something better than eating! His habit of communicating with God had embedded his soul with purpose. He had no greater joy than finding a way to do what he was made for.
When you decide to fast, why not open your Bible? You may find that your hunger for God is satisfied. Dare to plan a private fast and discover that God rewards those who hunger and thirst for His presence.