In the beginning of the New Year, the church I attend, along with thousands of other churches, suggested that as a group we should fast or abstain from particular foods and increase our daily devotional time for 21 days. And after learning more of the purpose of a fast, I decided to participate. Whether you consider yourself religious, spiritual, neither or in between I’m sure you can agree that life itself requires balance of its multiple facets. And for me that’s what fasting accomplishes. It allows me to evaluate myself and really focus on what areas in my life I’ve been neglecting, over indulging, damaging as well as what areas are blossoming, thriving, and beautiful. As well as gain some insight on my perception on life. So for 21 days I decided to abstain from social media and fried foods and read a daily devotion from Our Daily Bible. And in those 21 days I’ve gained valuable lessons to help to prosper for the New Year and hopefully years to come. First, I learned the importance of being intentional.
In order to reach my goal I had to make decisions on purpose. Meaning I had to plan for success. In the beginning, I felt like I was nitpicking. It almost seemed tiring to be planning and calculating what felt like 1,000 of steps. But after two weeks or of being so focused on paying attention to my preplanned day, it began to feel normal, routine even. Don’t get me wrong, there were days where it seemed easier to quit and the goal no longer to seem as important but that is when I realized that instant gratification kills self- discipline. This was probably the most important or impactful “epiphany” I discovered was, I learned how to wait, the importance of patience and making adjustments until I was able to get what I really wanted which made the wait worth it. There’s a big difference between discipline and deprivation. Because in the end the instant gratification of French fries couldn’t compare to the clearer skin, smaller waistline and financial gain I achieved my avoiding fried foods for 21 days. Not to mention the productive mornings, decrease of procrastination/ anxiety and better sleep I received by refraining from social media.
I also became more self-aware. I knew every aspect of life is interconnected but I was able to experience how sensitive the scales can be. What seemed like two small sacrifices impacted almost every aspect of my life. I benefited from this fat financially, physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally. When you take something away you pay more attention to what’s left. When I took away social media I realized, it allowed me to control who and what I had access to and who and what had access to me.
Most importantly I definitely grew in my faith. As a Christian, it is my duty to build my own relationship with God by studying the Bible, prayer and faith. And faith is simply the act of applying the Bible to my life willingly. I view pastors and “churches” differently. I’m more aware of pastors and church organizations that want you to be dependent on them. As well as these religious organizations who call themselves churches are failing Jesus true definition of the church (believers) by using slavery tactics to control the true church by twisting the interpretation of the Bible and leaving the church ignorant.
I’m glad I decided to participate. I do believe I grew as a person overall and created a proper mindset to begin the New Year. Sometimes we have to remove ourselves from someone, some place or something to become a better us.
“I’m Just Saying..”