When questioned about fasting, Jesus responds with an insight: there is a time to feast and a time to fast. As the Lord’s disciples we are guided by our faith in Christ to discern the appropriate times when we need to adjust our behaviors for the specific needs of a particular situation.
The practices of fasting, prayer and almsgiving are powerful disciplines that the Church has embraced from the teaching of Jesus, and they offer immense power in shaping and guiding our spiritual lives.
The spiritual discipline of fasting offers a powerful tool to help us recognize the needs of others. Both Isaiah and Jesus offer key insights into this practice, guiding us to see how fasting in our bodies can bring renewal to our souls.
The ashes on our foreheads invite us to repent of the sins that keep us from God and one another. Through fasting, prayer and almsgiving we have powerful tools that can open our hearts and transform our lives in this great season of Lent.
Jesus explains to the disciples of John in the Gospel today that there is a time to feast and a time to fast…reminding us that in our journey of faith we are also called to respond to the situations and circumstances of life with the guidance of Jesus Christ.
God loves a cheerful giver, and with the enthusiasm of a child we can offer our lives in prayer, service, fasting and almsgiving. May we give generously and joyfully, recalling that all that we have is a gift from the Lord.