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During the 40 days leading up to Easter, Christians often give up some things they enjoy in order to remember how much of a sacrifice it was for Jesus to give up His life. Think about it. Christ died on the cross for sins He did not commit. Somehow, when we consider what He did, giving up some desserts or time on the cell phone pales in comparison, right?
Traditionally, believers in Christ fast during Lent for several reasons. The first is because it follows Jesus’s example. When we first see Jesus as an adult in the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, He is baptized by his cousin John, often referred to as John the Baptist. These same Fasting for Lent: 5 Ways to Stick It Outptation-of-jesus-bible-story.html” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>temptation of Christ.” After the 40 days was up, Jesus came out of the desert and began preaching, healing, and ministering to people.
Fasting for Christians today echoes the 40 days Jesus spent preparing to serve others. Another reason we fast during Lent is to recognize and honor Jesus’s ultimate sacrifice of his life on the cross. Finally, we fast to show God that we want to be renewed from sin and ready to share the gospel and serve others for another year.
Fasting offers some tremendous benefits for believers today. It sets time apart from our busy schedules for God. It helps us be intentional towards Him. Whenever we feel a hunger pang from fasting a meal or miss the television show we like to watch, we are reminded of Him. We can be mindful of all He gives us and has done for us. When we take that 30-minute period to pray, worship, praise and read the Bible, we get to know our God better. We feel more up-close-and-personal in our relationship with Him. It’s also good self-discipline for us to sacrifice. Let’s face it. In American society, we get most – or at least a whole lot – of what we want. We do not have a lot of needs. Most of us know where we will sleep tonight and have a myriad of choices for meals. Not to mention running water, in door plumbing, and electricity. We have so few needs, in fact, that it’s hard to acknowledge our need for a Savior. Fasting takes our focus from ourselves and gives us the opportunity to renew our appreciation for the Lord.
While there are many things you can give up for Lent, consider keeping social media. Why? Through social media, you can teach others about Lent through your own posts, Tweets, and stories. You can encourage other believers and support each other during your fast. You can join groups on social media who are also fasting for Lent and learn what others are doing and how they are going about it. Social media can help renew the tradition of Lent and advance the gospel message.
Remember, fasting is not a law or requirement for Christians since Jesus covered all of our sins on the cross. We do not fast to punish ourselves but in honor of God and to renew our relationship with Him. How will you be fasting for Lent? Let us know below.
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