I’m putting this post up as a means of keeping minor topics updated, so as to prevent the hassle of covering this material in case of another more momentous and blog-worthy event.
The Sunday after this happened, my pastor announced that our church leadership had decided to encourage us to take up a 40-day fast. The fast was suggested as a means of confronting fears and otherwise getting prepared for the potential craziness that some people are predicting for the near-future USA. There are no strict rules for the fast, with regard to what any one of us might choose to quit for forty days.
I have chosen to fast from Internet news and related commentary/discussion. I had already cut way back, but I wanted to make it a complete fast, for at least the forty days ending August 30. So far, so good. It’s been eleven days now since I’ve had a clue what’s going on in the world. This is the most uninformed I’ve been since the late 90’s. I don’t miss ‘the news’, but I do miss reading discussions about the news. I find myself really itching to read from the Internet at times that I guess I’d normally do that very thing. Right when I get home from work and right before I go to sleep are the times I notice I’m most agitated about not reading.
The biggest difference between life now and before this fast is that I have more time available for other activities. I have primarily chosen to use that time either praying or sharpening my musical skills. I generally do a lot of both, already. But now there are larger blocks of uninterrupted opportunity for each. It’s pretty sick how many years of life I’ve been doing something that kept me from more productive and valuable activities.
In addition to the news fast, I’m still mostly not eating any sugary junk food. I splurged for a birthday weekend last weekend. But on a day-to-day basis, I’m not eating any of the stuff that I’d begun obsessing over in the past few months. I’m not reading any WWII books, though I haven’t sold all of my library yet. Not sure I’m ‘supposed to’.
Bottom line, I have effectively removed from my life the four primary distractions and crutches that I believe God has called me to leave behind. I’m not going to worry about whether or not this abstinence is supposed to temporary or permanent. Actually, the one big thing I know is permanent; the others, we’ll see. The most important thing right now is I am officially, in any given moment, more free from self-satisfying habits than I have ever been in my entire life. It feels really alien to be ‘denying my flesh’ to this extent; but I think it’s what I’m supposed to do. God presumably has better plans for me than to have me sit around anesthetizing myself any which way.
I haven’t seen the text vision since the big blowout event back in June. It either will or will not reappear in the future. He said with great confidence. I am still getting up to pray and read the Bible at wee hours several times a week. It was in those same efforts back in June that I was seeing the text vision so regularly. So, something has changed, but not necessarily for the worse.