Fasting...am I getting the point?

I'll never forget the first powerful experience I had with fasting. I was sitting in a big meeting of missionaries as a 19-year-old kid. I don't remember a lot of details. Someone played the piano. It was summertime. I was hungry.

But instead of feeling hunger, I felt humility. I felt close to God, and I knew I was experiencing the point of fasting. At least part of it.

Skip ahead to today. This morning I read a few verses of scriptures about fasting. This bled into scriptures and thoughts about the Sabbath Day, and eventually the Word of Wisdom. I noticed a pattern.

humility
yielding
whole soul
to be obedient to the commandments of God

As a 19-year-old kid, did I even get the point of it all? I guess I'd started to, because I recognized that taking a specific action caused me to feel close to God. But at that time, I'm pretty sure the point of the gospel in my mind was to convince other people to join the Church.

Since then, and today's study reminded me of this, I've come to the view that the point of the gospel (and the Church), is to teach me to yield my heart to God.

People constantly lose sight of this. Heck, I lose sight of it nearly as soon as I close my scriptures for the day.

Fasting reminds me in a physical, visceral way what it feels like to choose to follow God. For me, fasting contributes to humility and an obedient heart, which makes it an extremely important part of gospel living.

Here's a pretty flower I walked by yesterday.

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