Dinner’s finished, and we pull out Bibles, to plow on through Ezekiel, book most grueling. I’m scraping and rinsing dishes, putting leftovers in the fridge, while I see him open to ribbon-marker, look down on pages, go silent, intent.

I move back to my chair across from his, and he looks up, a little flushed, heaves a sigh.

“This is going to be hard,” he says.

I think we’re facing more puzzles of words inscrutable (like so much of this prophecy book), and begin to laugh.

“No, not that. It’s convicting!”

Ezekiel 33.

So we read. And reread. And pause between to think what this says to us, because we do get its basic meaning. This chapter portion is not riddle-wrought. It’s just hard other ways.

“You look like you’ve been hit,” I say, and he glances over, sheepish. Something’s on his mind…

“I have to go see someone,” his voice speaks hushed, as if to himself.

And we finish and pray — including for open doors this week, and then he goes to tune in the movie we’d planned to watch together. But now I’ve gone sober, too — thoughtful — and  entertainment doesn’t seem to sit right, fit right.

I think I need to go be quiet. And so I ask to be excused and tell him why, and he’s fine with that, he’ll watch the baseball guy film, and he doesn’t mind alone.

So I come and sit sober, moved somehow almost to tears, a thing within my spirit hard to draw by words. “Be still,” says my soul, “and sober. And think.”  

I need my Bible handy, to read when ready, till then to sit beside. I need to pray. Prayer is the proper and effective start of all things to be done for God, for men: loved ones, or lost, or erring. Not to stop at prayer, but yes, begin there. And TV movies would only intrude, eclipse.


This, I realize, is a sort of fasting. No, not from food, of course not, for we just got up from a satisfying meal. But a fast from entertainment, amusement.

This is another natural fast, rolling from within. The Spirit says, “Come,” and the human soul can answer… or divert to some diversion, divert away from God, and thus ignore the passage that now weighs heavy on the heart.

This is the birth of a fast.


This post is last in a short (and certainly not exhaustive) series exploring “fasting.” Related posts in order, first to last:

Fast Fast, Slow Fast, or No Fast? 

Fast: Fact and Fiction

Fasting Fail — And the Fast we All Need to Do

The Ache (Obliquely related, but helpful to read with the rest)

Backing into Fasting 


Linked to

6 thoughts on “Backwards Fasting, Type Two

  1. Oh, I loved this. Thank you for allowing us to share but a part of that intimate moment. Yes, fasting is so much more than neglected food. and how we should individually is thought-provoking indeed.
    thank you!
    All for Him,

  2. Thank you, Nikki. You say it well: “Fasting is so much more than neglected food.” It is so good when He slows us down to let it all drop away,to feed on what we really need… that we might even feed others as well. So glad you stopped by and commented!

  3. Dear Sylvia,

    I can really shout “amen” to this. My DH and I have a 2-movie/month subscription to Netflix. We used to think we should up the subscription to get more movies, but not since I’ve been going through Dark Night of the Soul and experiencing the needed contemplation following a job dismissal. We just can’t seem to get to the entertainment part of our lives. We are so engrossed in the Lord this Lenten season. Backwards fasting? If that is what it is, we are doing it here, too!


    1. Dawn,
      It’s really wondrous, isn’t it?
      Hugs back!
      (And this basic idea just wrote itself into my next post, going up in a moment — Yes, venturing another 5-minute risk!)

  4. Thanks for saying it again – that backing into it is how it’s born. It’s so true that fasting must begin with desire for Him, with following the soul-longing to be in His presence, to know Him more, seek Him with all we are. A fast will never be worth anything if it’s done out of obligation and not desire. I have learned this the hard way. But the desire – oh, it’s the best thing I’ve ever felt, for He’s the best thing I’ve ever known.

Comments are now closed.