I am going to be the first one to admit that fasting is not a regular part of my regimen. I must say, however, that in the last ten years, I have consistently heard more an more about fasting. The problem, at least for me, was that although many people around me were starting to put this into practice in their daily lives, I did not see any common thread to weave the reasoning, methodology, and benefits of fasting together to make it a palatable undertaking for me. I heard things like “you should fast and pray about that” or “I’m doing a Daniel fast” or “I’m not doing a food fast, I’m abstaining from [insert item here].” Huh? What? I was rather confused.
I picked up Fasting – Opening the Door to a Deeper, More Intimate, More Powerful Relationship with God by Jentzen Franklin (see my last post for links and summary) in a CVS pharmacy (of all places) while picking up a prescription about a year ago. It sat on my bookshelf gathering dust (as many of my books do) until the appropriate time. I must say that in reading this book, my reservations mentioned above are constantly addressed and my knowledge of this subject continues to deepen. I fully plan to put into practice what I read and will write about it at some time in the future. However, for now, I wanted to share an excerpt with you so you can understand something that I did not for a long time: Fasting is not just encouraged by Jesus – It is expected!
From Fasting: During the years that Jesus walked this earth, He devoted time to teaching His disciples the principles of the kingdom of God, principles that conflict with those of this world. In the Beatitudes, specifically in Matthew 6, Jesus provided the pattern by which each of us is to live as a child of God. That pattern addressed three specific duties of a Christian: giving, praying, and fasting. Jesus said, “When you give…” and “When you pray…” and “When you fast.” He made it clear that fasting, like giving and praying, was a normal part of Christian life. As much attention should be given to fasting as is given to giving and praying. Jentzen Franklin
Books I am currently reading (Just in Case You Wondered What Things Shape My Thinking):
- The Kingdom, Power, & Glory – The Overcomer’s Handbook (Chuck and Nancy Missler)
- This book challenges Christians to become “overcomers” by laying before them the magnificent future that will be inherited by the faithful and obedient. Does our behavior as Christians matter once we are assured of our salvation? Being “born again” is just the beginning of an intimate relationship with God. This book will change the way you live your day to day life and give you a “heavenly” perspective.
- Shadow Government – How the Secret Global Elite Is Using Surveillance Against You (Grant R. Jeffrey)
- Security cameras, surveillance of your financial transactions, radio frequency spy chips hidden in consumer products, tracking of your Internet searches, and eavesdropping on your e-mail and phone calls. Without your knowledge or consent, every aspect of your life is observed and recorded. But who is watching the watchers? In Shadow Government, Grant Jeffrey removes the screen that, up to now, has hidden the work of these diabolical agents. Jeffrey reveals the biblical description of Satan’s global conquest and identifies the tools of technology that the Antichrist will use to rule the world.
- Fasting – Opening the Door to a Deeper, More Intimate, More Powerful Relationship with God (Jentezen Franklin)
- When you fast, your spirit becomes uncluttered by the things of this world and amazingly sensitive to the things of God. Once you’ve experienced even a glimpse of this and the countless rewards and blessings that follow, it changes your entire perspective. This is one of the best and most comprehensive books available on the topic. Discover how to unlock the power of biblical fasting, including:
- The types of fasts described in the Bible and how to choose which is right for you
- The connection between fasting and prayer
- The essential components of a successful fast
- What to expect physically, mentally, and spiritually
- The Holman Christian Standard Bible: John (Holman Bible Publishers, Nashville, TN)
- The Bible is God’s inspired word, inerrant in the original manuscripts. It is the only means of knowing God’s plan of salvation, and His will for our lives. It is the only hope and answer for a rebellious, searching world. Bible translation, both a science and an art, is a bridge that brings God’s word from the ancient world to the world today. Depending on God to accomplish this task, Holman Bible Publishers presents the Holman Christian Standard Bible, a new English translation of God’s word.
- The Goals of this Translation
- To provide English-speaking people across the world with an accurate, readable Bible in contemporary English
- To Equip serious Bible students with an accurate translation for personal study, private devotions, and memorization
- To give those who love God’s word a text that is easy to read, visually attractive on the page, and appealing when heard
- To affirm the authority of the Scriptures as God’s inerrant word and to champion its absolutes against social or cultural agendas that would compromise its accuracy
- Bioinformatics – A Practical Guide to the Analysis of Genes and Proteins (Edited by Andreas D. Baxevanis and B.F. Francis Ouellette)
- Equipping biologists with the modern tools necessary to solve practical problems in sequence data analysis, the Second Edition covers the broad spectrum of topics in bioinformatics, ranging from Internet concepts to predictive algorithms used on sequence, structure, and expression data. With chapters written by experts in the field, this up-to-date reference thoroughly covers vital concepts and is appropriate for both the novice and the experienced practitioner. Written in clear, simple language, the book is accessible to users without an advance mathematical or computer science background.
- Performance Evaluation – Proven Approaches for Improving Program and Organizational Performance Research Methods for the Social Sciences (Ingrid J. Lopez-Guerra)
- Performance Evaluation is a hands-on text for practitioners, researchers, educators, and students in how to use scientifically-based evaluations that are both rigorous and flexible. Author Ingrid Guerra-Lopez, and internationally-known evaluation expert, introduces the foundations of evaluation and presents the most applicable models for the performance improvement field. Her book offers a wide variety of tools and techniques that have proven successful and is organized to illustrate evaluation in the context of continual performance evaluation.