Boldness, Character, Discipline, Excellence, Faith, Freedom, goal, Influence, Purpose, security, Vision

This Time It’s Okay to Give Up

Welcome to Faith Connections Friday! Thank you so much for joining this week.

* Favorite drink: Coffee or hot tea

* Favorite candy: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup

* Favorite hobbies: Writing, Reading

* Favorite movie genre: Classics, romantic comedies

* Favorite pet: Cat

* Favorite season(s): Fall and Spring

What are some of your favorites? Now, is there anything from what you identified that you are willing to give up? Something else?

Image: ChurchArt

We are in the season of Lent. Many choose to exercise the spiritual discipline of fasting, the practice of giving up a food, luxury, or favorite item; and focus on the spiritual aspect of what this season represents. Some may choose to fast (or cease) from gossipping or cursing, coffee or chocolate, TV or social media, or something else.

These choices are not meant to be easy. The goal is to fast from something that takes much of your time or thoughts so you can purposefully devote yourself more to spiritual disciplines. It is basically anything that occupies your time or thoughts more than God. Fasting from something that will intentionally be noticeably felt and replacing it with focusing on God through prayer and God’s Word. In addition, there may be a specific lesson or direction to devote your focus.

It’s a tough personal examination. We can easily choose to allow our minds to dwell on our circumstances longer than allow our minds to praise our Creator who is in control of the circumstances. We can choose to eat unhealthy food rather than thank our Provider for the Bread of Life. We can choose to spend hours on social media instead of taking the time to read the Word of God, His personal message to us.

At the end of this season, the results will hopefully affect your life in a profound way. Lent is only a few short weeks. After the season is complete, evaluate what you have learned. You may consider the practice more regularly, as God leads. The benefits of fasting are quite rewarding.

Our Faith Connections Challenge: Identify what you choose to give up for this period and a particular lesson or direction you may feel prompted to devote your focus. Keep a journal of your thoughts and prayers. At the end of the Lent season, review your journal entries; and evaluate what the Lord has taught you. Consider fasting more regularly, as the Lord directs. Be blessed!

Dear Lord, thank You for this precious one who has chosen the one thing–a desire to focus on You alone. May they be blessed beyond their expectation! In Your Name, Amen.

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