The Blog of Gordon Pruitt the Pastor of St. Matthew's United Methodist Church in Richmond Virginia

Monday, October 16, 2006

"You Shall Not Live By Bread Alone"

I was reading 1 Peter and came across 4:1 and it stopped me in my tracks, "therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because those who have suffered in their body are done with sin."

It struck me struck me that I have never suffered in the body for Jesus. Now I am sure that Peter had something different in mind than what I came up with but I realized that when it comes to eating I have never denied myself. I eat what I want when I want. I don’t deny myself in that area and whenever we don’t deny ourselves in any area, eating, sleeping, beer, or whatever it is has the potential to become god in our lives. As silly and as dumb as this sounds a truth was revealed to me: I was a slave to my body when my body should be a slave to Jesus.
So as a result of this “revelation” my first step was to stop snacking and only 3 meals a day, which translates, "no snacks at all." For the last 3 weeks I have done this. The most surprising part is how easy this has been. Sometimes at night, (I’m a night owl) I’ll get hungry but it has not killed me like I figured it would. Don’t know how long I'll continue to do this but I will keep at it for awhile. The next step in the progression is to fast and maybe make fasting a regular part of my life. Jesus says in the Bible, “when you fast”, not “if you fast,” and John Wesley fasted a minimum of one day a week. I have fasted in the past but I always knew I could pig out the next day and it was never a regular spiritual discipline.

1 comment:

Andrew C said...

Gordon - Thank you for your thoughts in this area. Suffering in the body is something that is particularly foreign to those of us that live in the United States - extremely wealthy relative to the rest of the world. I am also considering the discipline of fasting at this time in my spiritual journey. Thanks for sharing your journey.