I’m Just Not A Fan of This…

BUT I KNOW I HAVE TO DO IT…

FASTING

(JUST BEING HONEST)

FASTING…the word sends shivers down my spine.  Not because of some spiritual thing happening to me; it’s because I love food so much, that thought of going without it sends my body into convulsions.

One of my favorite Bible expositors of all time, D Martyn Lloyd Jones, said this about fasting.

“Fasting, if we conceive of it truly, must NOT be confined to the question of food and drink; fasting should really be made to include abstinence from anything which is legitimate in and of itself for the sake of some special spiritual purpose. There are many bodily functions which are right and normal and perfectly legitimate, but which for special peculiar reasons in certain circumstances should be controlled. That is fasting.”

I agree with Dr Lloyd Jones’ words….
I think you can fast ESPN as well as a meal.
I think you can fast Fantasy football and golf.

The goal is not a hunger strike.
The goal is to provide more time to seek God.
It is whatever opens up the door for more prayer.

The first century meal was a production.
It took hours , and it was un-rushed.
There was no fast food at that time.
To fast a meal was to open up the door for more time.

Jesus said in Mark 9 that “these only come out by prayer and fasting” and the “these” are demons. Now if I’m a demon, then I would want to hang out with those people that are unable to physically fast due to a medical condition.  It doesn’t make sense to me.

To fast is to create greater space to pray.  God hears us because we are His children not because we are voluntarily starving ourselves.  And what Father would not give greater attention to his child who is creating more space to be with him and to talk to him.

Luke, the Beloved Physician

Colossians 4:14 Luke, the beloved physician, sends you his greetings….

A brief exhortation to my doctor and nurse friends who help the sick and who love Jesus.

I love what Paul says about Dr. Luke.
They had a very close relationship because of being travel companions throughout the book of Acts.
He calls him “the beloved physician”
That adjective is so incredible.
The word means to be the favorite, well liked, the famous one, the dearly loved.

Basically Paul was saying , “if you wanted a doctor at that time , every one wanted Luke”. Luke was the one you wanted to be your family doctor…the kids loved him and the adults loved him also.
He was everyone’s favorite

The one thing that doctors don’t get sometimes is the element of love and gentleness that needs to accompany truth. I understand the harsh realities of sickness and the need to disclose to patients those realities, but let’s also have a focus on BELOVED  and NOT JUST physician.

“Beloved” is not popularity, it’s making people a priority. It’s understanding people; and not just doing your job but going an extra step with those you treat.

Check out this research from Malcolm Gladwell’s book “Blink” that I read last year
BELOVED PHYSICIAN made me think back to this one section.

Wendy Levinson a medical researcher recorded hundreds of conversations between a doctor and their patients.
Roughly half of the doctors have been sued at least twice. There was one difference in the research…
The surgeons who never have been sued spend more than 3 minutes longer with each patient than those who had been sued. It was 18.3 min vs 15 min. The difference was in how they talked to their patients.

Psychologist Nalini Ambady took the results to another level…
She took the interviews and took out almost all but 2 ten second clips of the doctor talking.
Then she removed recognizable words and you were left with just tones.
She felt you could tell which ones spent longer with their patients just on tones.
And found out she could predict with ease which doctors got sued and the ones that did not.

Being “beloved” doesn’t mean that you don’t do your job; but you do your job loving people.

The ones that are beloved are the ones that love
That is true for anyone in any field

The Power of a Little Word

“thank you” and “I’m sorry” are part of daily living

And if you don’t know how to say either of these phrases then you are living a sad life.
We need people so we need to say “thank you”
We are not perfect so we will need to say “I’m sorry” a lot
But sometimes it means a lot to add just a little power to a thank you or an apology.

It’s amazing how big the word “so” is…

Something happens when you say ….

“thank you SOOOO much” or “I am SOOO sorry”

There is a punch to it
There is a power to it
There is feeling to it

I am learning more and more that just the extra two letters in a text and in an email really helps.

Those words carry emotion with it
You don’t believe me?
Leave it out of this verse and see….

“For God _____ loved the world that
He gave His only begotten Son….”

You know what goes there…..SO!

And “SO” makes this verse powerful