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A Prayer and Fasting Devotional 

Fasting, among other things, is a way of stepping away from this world, a world we are engrossed and often enthralled with, in order to re-focus on the true order of things. We too easily live in a fantasy world where we as individuals are the practical center of our daily universe, a selfish bubble that in turn is floating in a society which views all sorts of inappropriate objects as worthy of adoration. Yet when I get very hungry, or very sick, or very desperate, the true nature of things becomes more clear: The Lord has created us, and sustains us moment by moment.

He is at the center of the universe, and it moves according to His plan. We are fragile, small, and totally dependent upon Him. I know this in my head, but my heart wanders pretty easily over the fence to the ludicrous position that perhaps I'm better off siding with the world on certain issues. God seems to be both outgunned and out of touch with the sophisticated modern world. My hope is that during this fast the Lord will show us all His Glory, and that He will burn into our consciousness the true balance of power, how much greater He is than everything He has created (including us).

I've been reading Ezekiel lately, which begins with a vision of the Lord in the first chapter:

"And on this throne high above was a figure whose appearance resembled a man. From what appeared to be His waist up, He looked like gleaming amber, flickering like a fire. And from His waist down, He looked like a burning flame, shining with splendor. All around Him was a glowing halo, like a rainbow shining in the clouds on a rainy day. This is what the glory of the Lord looked like to me. When I saw it, I fell face down on the ground..."

Falling face down on the ground seems to be the natural response of anyone glimpsing Him, or even His angelic messengers. When Isaiah had a vision of the Lord (Chapter 6), he felt like he was disintegrating:

Then I said, "It's all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven's Armies."

The Lord's appearance alone, without a word or action, instantly convicted Isaiah of his own sinfulness and frailty, and the Lord's holiness, power, and eternal nature. Finally, consider John's encounter with the glorified Christ in Revelation 1:

He was wearing a long robe with a gold sash across His chest. His head and His hair were white like wool, as white as snow. And His eyes were like flames of fire. His feet were like polished bronze refined in a furnace, and His voice thundered like mighty ocean waves. He held seven stars in His right hand, and a sharp two-edged sword came from His mouth. And His face was like the sun in all its brilliance. When I saw Him, I fell at His feet as if I were dead. But He laid His right hand on me and said, "Don't be afraid! I am the First and the Last. I am the living one. I died, but look—I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave."

Today let's ask God to write His Glory on our hearts, so we can serve the true master in all circumstances.

Erik Codrington
Christian Union Board of Trustees