Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of April 7, 2013
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press,
here is a selection from our book of daily devotions,
"Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the
Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed. Thank you
for forwarding this to your friends.
Temptation and fasting
"Jesus fasted for forty days and forty nights, and
afterwards he was famished."
The pastor of St. Michael's Church of Hamburg, Germany,
Helmut Thielicke reminds us that Christ experienced
severe hunger, his stomach growled (Quoted in Blackmore,
James H. "Reflections on the Temptations of Christ," p.
14). His intestines were twisted into knots, his abdomen
became bloated, and his head throbbed with pain. Jesus
Christ felt weak and faint. This was an extreme situation.
Jesus was famished. He was extremely vulnerable to
temptation in this physical state of weakness.
We have much to learn about prayer and fasting. We know
that going without food for forty days and forty nights
is medically dangerous. Fasting for forty days is not
safe and I do not recommended it. At the same time,
Jesus teaches that fasting is part of spiritual life.
In just a page or two, Jesus assumes we will fast (Matthew
6:16-18) and teaches his disciples how to fast in
moderation. There are times and seasons in our lives
when we need fasting for spiritual growth, maturing,
Many in the world do not have the luxury of going to bed
with a full stomach. Jesus identifies fully with those
without adequate daily food. He hungered. He was
actually starving. Consider scheduling a prayer fast
for the spiritual experience of identifying with those
who hunger. If you are under a physician's care, ask
your doctor if fasting would affect your health. Missing
one meal a month for prayer purposes is a realistic place
to start. List special concerns for prayer. Select
scriptures or special readings in advance. If possible,
plan on a specific place for your prayer. Put it on
your calendar. It will transform your prayer life.
Fasting and prayer refines our faith, strengthens and
matures us. It helps us identify with those who are
actually famished and in desperate need.
God, bring your compassion on those who hunger physically
and spiritually this day. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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