I love my friend Elizabeth. I love how she challenges me to be a better person and to be intentional with my decisions in life. Sometimes her deep and interested questions leave me feeling like I have no answer good enough. But then it pushes me to step outside my comfort zone and find out why I do things, feel things and think things.
I love my friend Elizabeth because she has the gift of speaking truth into my life. She is encouraging and inspiring yet she will tell it like it is. When I build up walls or live with what we call good ole' "Christianeze" she will dig right around that and get real. Last night we got real.
I love my friend Elizabeth because it always starts with a question that should be very simple. "How are you feeling about the fast? Have you learned anything? How has it impacted you spiritually?" She doesn't hold back but jumps right to the heart of an issue. Of course I should have answers to these questions. It has been two full weeks!
How am I feeling? Surprising good! Oh, there are moments when all I can think about is the juicy-citrus-tang of an orange or the melt-in-your-mouth cupcakes that I was forced to freeze. But overall I really enjoy the simplicity of 7.
Have I learned anything? I am so shockingly aware of hunger and starvation around the globe. I burn with anger for the injustice that I have been given everything and so many are starving to death at this very moment. I have learned how truly blessed I am to even have 7 foods on my plate. I have learned that eating more simply can ignite more passion for food, not less. I really enjoy creating dishes that seem so impossible and finding new ways to eat my 7 foods.
How has it impacted you spiritually? Oh right, this is a fast. Hmmm...well, am I different. Have I had moments with the Holy Spirit? Do I feel different? Has my faith grown? My reliance on God? I am afraid that while I have learned so much and am feeling so good, that I have mistakenly turned my fast away from the control of God. Remember my rant about Lent? A fast is meant to help us release control of certain areas of our life, allowing God to take the lead. Have I allowed God to be in control, or am I still controlling this?
Not to be too hard on myself, I truly believe I have used this fast to grow closer to God and stronger in faith. I have intentionally spent more time each day in the Word and praying. It is helping me to eliminate excess with food, as well as many other areas of my life. Last night's conversation is just a reminder of why I am in this. To allow God to be in control of my life. The focus should also be so much less about me, and so much more about Him, His glory, His grace, and His mercy.
Father have mercy on me for making this about me. This is all about you, who you are, and what you have purposed for us. Amen.