Oops! I fell asleep last night before I had the opportunity to blog about the day. This may be a better way to write about it anyway…the day after. We’ll see.
Day three was good. Feeling better mostly except for the ever-present headache. The kids are doing really well too. The grumbling about the fast has hopefully ceased and they are handling things well. There were a few conversations yesterday about missing foods…I suggested they stop discussing the foods they miss, because that may just create a longing that could stay on their mind throughout the fast. They agreed and the day was better.
One of my kids is really missing sugar. Especially after the holidays. There were so many treats available everywhere we went…that particular child took part in every chance they had! This week that child has felt especially tired, and a bit irritable. I call it withdrawal.
I was a bit edgy and irritable yesterday as my headache surged in and out of my day. Every time I fast I tell myself that I must wean myself off coffee sooner. And if I did, I would feel less of the effects during the fast. Well, once again I did not cut back…in fact with the holidays I drank more coffee than ever…taking every opportunity to drink coffee with friends. 🙂 I have been getting up in the dark hours of morning for some time now, and nothing has seemed better than to have a little time alone…just me, God, and my cup of coffee. For the next fast I may just move past thinking about doing something, and actually follow through.
Yesterday, the children and I read through three chapters in Genesis and we read of Noah. Something that struck all of us was that as the world was becoming more and more corrupt, Noah was considered one of the most righteous men of his time. When God asked Him to build the ark, he followed the exact specifications. Excellence, obedience and righteousness.
We then read through chapter one of James. That had been on my heart all day. It felt right for us to read it together. I felt encouraged as I reminded myself to consider all troubles GREAT JOY! And reminding all of us that tough times were an opportunity to grow. We prayed for endurance during this time of fasting and prayer and asked God to keep us from temptation.Endurance to finish the race well, not just crawl through.
We all spent time journaling after reading the scriptures. We set aside twenty minutes to write in our prayer journals. The point of this is to apply the scripture to our own lives and see what God is saying to us as individuals. We then shared what we had written…not word-for-word, just the nuggets.
Each of us spent some time focusing on the scripture from James 1:19.
“You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.”
One of my children remarked that they wanted to become a better listener during the fast. While another child mentioned hoping to argue less. Another mentioned the need to slow down. Wow! They are getting into it!
Every child complained about the salad I made for dinner. As I was chopping veggies, each took turn walking through and making comments about which vegetables they were not fond of, etc. I thought the salad was beautiful. Green and purple cabbage, carrots, red peppers, green peppers, cucumbers, chopped broccoli, sesame seeds… Then as they ate it, they loved it!
I have reminded them that they have eaten whole foods for years now…and since we have been in Hawai’i we have become relaxed about many of the foods we eat. They have become used to adding toppings, dairy, and meats. They are just tasting things in their more natural form.Since I just finished a long period of time of not eating gluten and sugar, this feels great to me and besides for missing meat as my main source of protein, it feels great to be eating this way. Clean eating is so good for all of us.
Sometimes it is difficult to fast with the children, because they are very focused on the food. However, I am blessed that we are fasting together as a family. They can stand to eat many vegetables and fruits, whole grains and legumes, and drink plenty of water. Children need a break from the daily junk that is pervasive in our culture. Creating more time in the word and in prayer, and eating nutritious food will only benefit them.
I had several opportunities to journal alone yesterday as well as to pray in the morning alone, and later with the children. I am hoping for even more times throughout the day today.
Confession: I was so exhausted last night that I fell asleep during our final devotional time of the day as my husband read through Daniel 3. Sorry family…I may need to stand up during tonight’s devotional time. 🙂