“Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, ‘Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?’ And Jesus said to them, ‘Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast.’”
—Matthew 9:14-15 ESV
In those days the disciples had Jesus with them in the flesh. They could ask him questions and talk with him about their problems; he was readily available. But Jesus explained that the day would come when he would leave this world, and when that day came his followers would fast.
These words teach us that the most basic motive for fasting is to be closer to Jesus when we feel far from him.
When we fast we are declaring that we need God even more than food itself, and at times when we would normally eat, we choose to feed on the “spiritual food” that only God can provide.
Whether you happen to be fasting right now or not, remember these words of Jesus today: “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Mt. 28:20).
Here is a short prayer to carry with you today:
Breathe in: Even when I can’t feel your presence,
Breathe out: I know you are with me.