I started fasting yesterday afternoon. Fasting is a religious practice and requires abstinence from both food and water, in order to focus solely on prayers and supplication to God. I chose to fast in spite of the very busy two days before me as I prepare to leave for Ecuador.
I still need to pack, buy humanitarian supplies, meet with students who must register with the US Embassy, and remember all the details of international travel and the leaving of responsibilities behind.
As I've wavered over the importance of this sacrifice or not, I've had to pray for strength to stick to my resolve, and it reminds me of my dependence on a higher power for the blessings I so desire.
Never could I have desired anything more, and hence, after my doubt, I am committed to this fast.
Our daughter will be having surgery to remove suspicious tissue in her breast.
So what do I fast for? Everything.
That she will do fine under anesthesia.
That the errant tissue will be just a minor nuisance in her full life.
That if the tissue is a threat, she will have strength and hope to conquer.
That if the tissue is a threat, she may understand the trial and grow from its existence.
That her surgeon will have clarity.
That her recovery will be without complications.
That I will be able to handle any news I receive.
And yes, that she will be cured of any possible malady.
I'm asking a lot.
And giving so little.
Fasting is a compassionate request of the Father, so that when we ask of him, plead of him, we can do so with full confidence because we are making a sacrifice, giving our all--and it is only food and drink for a 24 hour period.
Yet he understands how hunger gnaws, how thirst begs for relief, and the humble requirement to rely on him--not only for our own strength but for the strength of others.