Day8

Fasting as Worship (1 of 3)

from the Lent 2016 reading plan


Matthew 6:16-18, Hosea 6:6, 1 Samuel 16:7

BY Raechel Myers

Text: Matthew 6:16-18, Hosea 6:6, 1 Samuel 16:7

“For I desire loyalty and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.”
-Hosea 6:6

Here’s the thing I’ve learned about fasting: it’s really only ever for one thing.

Fasting is for God’s glory.

It is for our drawing near to Him, yes.
It is for mourning our sin, yes.
It is for interceding and returning and repenting. All of those things.
But all those things are for His glory.

We can fast from food while feasting on our own pride. We can withhold indulgences while noting them as accomplishments. It may not be easy to fast, but it is quite easy to make our fasting about us, isn’t it?

We don’t set out for it to be this way, but we are sinners and thoughts of self come so naturally. Even our most selfless deeds—our efforts to deny ourselves and take up our cross—require God’s grace.

Jesus tells us in Matthew, “Whenever you fast, don’t be sad-faced . . . put oil on your head and wash your face, so that you don’t show your fasting to people but to your Father” (Matthew 6:16). And in 1 Corinthians, Paul tells us, “Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for God’s glory” (1 Corinthians 10:31).

Before knowing ourselves or training behaviors or even petitioning Him—the first reason we fast is to give glory to our Maker. It’s why we’re here. It’s why we have breath in our lungs. It’s what is asked of us in anything that we do.

“You do not want a sacrifice, or I would give it;
You are not pleased with a burnt offering.
The sacrifice pleasing to God is a broken spirit.
God, You will not despise a broken and humbled heart.”
-Psalm 51:16-17

He who knit us together, sees and searches and knows every beat of our hearts (Psalm 139:1-2, 23; 1 Samuel 16:7). Imagine Him, our Creator and Father, being presented with gifts from our heart to His, knowing full well they were never really intended for Him. Our sacrifices are empty apart from our God. They are utterly meaningless outside of communing with Him.

And so, we fast to know Him. Because that gives Him glory.
We fast to become like Christ. Because this glorifies the Father.
We fast—whatever it is we’re fasting from—because He is God and we are not.

We fast for Him.

Tomorrow we will read accounts from God’s Word about fasting as intercession, and on Friday, Scripture will help us understand fasting as humility. But today, let’s hold the mystery of biblical fasting in front of us and understand it simply as a means and opportunity to bring glory and honor to the One who desires, deserves, and demands our worship.

Whatever we eat or drink, whatever we don’t eat or don’t drink—whatever we do—let’s do it all for the glory of our God. Because our fasting and feasting, our prayer and confession, our meditation and our study—it’s all about so much more than us. It is about His Kingdom. It is about Him.

“I do not know You God because I am in the way.
Please help me to push myself aside.”
-Flannery O’Connor, A Prayer Journal  

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99 thoughts on "Fasting as Worship (1 of 3)"

  1. Suzana Monika says:

    Feria Quarta infra Hebdomadam III in Quadragesima ~ III. classis
    Commemoratio ad Laudes tantum: Ss. Quadraginta Martyrum

    Ad Completorium Rubrics 1960

    Compare Sancta Missa Date
    3-10-2021
    ↓ ↑ Ordo Options

    Top Next
    Incipit
    V. Iube, Dómine, benedícere.
    Benedictio. Noctem quiétam et finem perféctum concédat nobis Dóminus omnípotens. Amen.
    2
    Start
    V. Grant, Lord, a blessing.
    Benediction. May almighty God grant us a quiet night and a perfect end. Amen.
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    Lectio brevis
    1 Pet 5:8-9
    Fratres: Sóbrii estóte, et vigiláte: quia adversárius vester diábolus tamquam leo rúgiens círcuit, quærens quem dévoret: cui resístite fortes in fide.
    V. Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
    R. Deo grátias.
    3
    Short reading
    1 Pet 5:8-9
    Brothers: Be sober and watch: because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, goeth about seeking whom he may devour. Whom resist ye, strong in faith:
    V. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
    R. Thanks be to God.
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    V. Adiutórium nóstrum ✠ in nómine Dómini.
    R. Qui fecit cælum et terram.
    4
    V. Our help is ✠ in the name of the Lord,
    R. Who made heaven and earth.
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    Examen conscientiæ vel Pater Noster totum secreto.
    Pater noster, qui es in cælis, sanctificétur nomen tuum: advéniat regnum tuum: fiat volúntas tua, sicut in cælo et in terra. Panem nostrum cotidiánum da nobis hódie: et dimítte nobis débita nostra, sicut et nos dimíttimus debitóribus nostris: et ne nos indúcas in tentatiónem: sed líbera nos a malo. Amen.
    5
    There follows an examination of conscience, or the Our Father said silently.
    Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation: But deliver us from evil. Amen.
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    Confíteor Deo omnipoténti, beátæ Maríæ semper Vírgini, beáto Michaéli Archángelo, beáto Ioánni Baptístæ, sanctis Apóstolis Petro et Paulo, et ómnibus Sanctis, quia peccávi nimis, cogitatióne, verbo et ópere: percutit sibi pectus mea culpa, mea culpa, mea máxima culpa. Ídeo precor beátam Maríam semper Vírginem, beátum Michaélem Archángelum, beátum Ioánnem Baptístam, sanctos Apóstolos Petrum et Paulum, et omnes Sanctos, oráre pro me ad Dóminum Deum nostrum.
    Misereátur nostri omnípotens Deus, et dimíssis peccátis nostris, perdúcat nos ad vitam ætérnam. Amen.
    Indulgéntiam, ✠ absolutiónem et remissiónem peccatórum nostrórum tríbuat nobis omnípotens et miséricors Dóminus. Amen.
    6
    I confess to almighty God, to blessed Mary ever Virgin, to blessed Michael the Archangel, to blessed John the Baptist, to the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, and to all the Saints, that I have sinned exceedingly in thought, word and deed: strikes his breast through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault. Therefore I beseech blessed Mary ever Virgin, blessed Michael the Archangel, blessed John the Baptist, the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, and all the Saints, to pray for me to the Lord our God.
    May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.
    May the almighty ✠ and merciful Lord grant us pardon, absolution and remission of our sins. Amen.
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    V. Convérte nos ✙︎ Deus, salutáris noster.
    R. Et avérte iram tuam a nobis.
    V. Deus ✠ in adiutórium meum inténde.
    R. Dómine, ad adiuvándum me festína.
    V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
    R. Sicut erat in princípio, et nunc, et semper, * et in sǽcula sæculórum. Amen.
    Laus tibi, Dómine, Rex ætérnæ glóriæ.
    7
    V. Turn us then, ✙︎ O God, our saviour:
    R. And let thy anger cease from us.
    V. O God, ✠ come to my assistance;
    R. O Lord, make haste to help me.
    V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
    R. As it was in the beginning, is now, * and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
    Praise be to thee, O Lord, King of eternal glory.
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    Psalmi {ex Psalterio secundum diem}
    Ant. Immíttet Ángelus Dómini * in circúitu timéntium eum: et erípiet eos.
    Psalmus 33(2-11) [1]
    33:2 Benedícam Dóminum in omni témpore: * semper laus eius in ore meo.
    33:3 In Dómino laudábitur ánima mea: * áudiant mansuéti, et læténtur.
    33:4 Magnificáte Dóminum mecum: * et exaltémus nomen eius in idípsum.
    33:5 Exquisívi Dóminum, et exaudívit me: * et ex ómnibus tribulatiónibus meis erípuit me.
    33:6 Accédite ad eum, et illuminámini: * et fácies vestræ non confundéntur.
    33:7 Iste pauper clamávit, et Dóminus exaudívit eum: * et de ómnibus tribulatiónibus eius salvávit eum.
    33:8 Immíttet Ángelus Dómini in circúitu timéntium eum: * et erípiet eos.
    33:9 Gustáte, et vidéte quóniam suávis est Dóminus: * beátus vir, qui sperat in eo.
    33:10 Timéte Dóminum, omnes sancti eius: * quóniam non est inópia timéntibus eum.
    33:11 Dívites eguérunt et esuriérunt: * inquiréntes autem Dóminum non minuéntur omni bono.
    V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
    R. Sicut erat in princípio, et nunc, et semper, * et in sǽcula sæculórum. Amen.
    8
    Psalms {from the Psalter for the day of the week}
    Ant. The angel of the Lord * shall encamp round about them that fear him: and shall deliver them.
    Psalm 33(2-11) [1]
    33:2 I will bless the Lord at all times, * his praise shall be always in my mouth.
    33:3 In the Lord shall my soul be praised: * let the meek hear and rejoice.
    33:4 O magnify the Lord with me; * and let us extol his name together.
    33:5 I sought the Lord, and he heard me; * and he delivered me from all my troubles.
    33:6 Come ye to him and be enlightened: * and your faces shall not be confounded.
    33:7 This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him: * and saved him out of all his troubles.
    33:8 The Angel of the Lord shall encamp round about them that fear him: * and shall deliver them.
    33:9 O taste, and see that the Lord is sweet: * blessed is the man that hopeth in him.
    33:10 Fear the Lord, all ye his saints: * for there is no want to them that fear him.
    33:11 The rich have wanted, and have suffered hunger: * but they that seek the Lord shall not be deprived of any good.
    V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
    R. As it was in the beginning, is now, * and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
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    Psalmus 33(12-23) [2]
    33:12 Veníte, fílii, audíte me: * timórem Dómini docébo vos.
    33:13 Quis est homo qui vult vitam: * díligit dies vidére bonos?
    33:14 Próhibe linguam tuam a malo: * et lábia tua ne loquántur dolum.
    33:15 Divérte a malo, et fac bonum: * inquíre pacem, et perséquere eam.
    33:16 Óculi Dómini super iustos: * et aures eius in preces eórum.
    33:17 Vultus autem Dómini super faciéntes mala: * ut perdat de terra memóriam eórum.
    33:18 Clamavérunt iusti, et Dóminus exaudívit eos: * et ex ómnibus tribulatiónibus eórum liberávit eos.
    33:19 Iuxta est Dóminus iis, qui tribuláto sunt corde: * et húmiles spíritu salvábit.
    33:20 Multæ tribulatiónes iustórum: * et de ómnibus his liberábit eos Dóminus.
    33:21 Custódit Dóminus ómnia ossa eórum: * unum ex his non conterétur.
    33:22 Mors peccatórum péssima: * et qui odérunt iustum, delínquent.
    33:23 Rédimet Dóminus ánimas servórum suórum: * et non delínquent omnes qui sperant in eo.
    V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
    R. Sicut erat in princípio, et nunc, et semper, * et in sǽcula sæculórum. Amen.
    9
    Psalm 33(12-23) [2]
    33:12 Come, children, hearken to me: * I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
    33:13 Who is the man that desireth life: * who loveth to see good days?
    33:14 Keep thy tongue from evil, * and thy lips from speaking guile.
    33:15 Turn away from evil and do good: * seek after peace and pursue it.
    33:16 The eyes of the Lord are upon the just: * and his ears unto their prayers.
    33:17 But the countenance of the Lord is against them that do evil things: * to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
    33:18 The just cried, and the Lord heard them: * and delivered them out of all their troubles.
    33:19 The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a contrite heart: * and he will save the humble of spirit.
    33:20 Many are the afflictions of the just; * but out of them all will the Lord deliver them.
    33:21 The Lord keepeth all their bones, * not one of them shall be broken.
    33:22 The death of the wicked is very evil: * and they that hate the just shall be guilty.
    33:23 The Lord will redeem the souls of his servants: * and none of them that trust in him shall offend.
    V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
    R. As it was in the beginning, is now, * and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
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    Psalmus 60 [3]
    60:2 Exáudi, Deus, deprecatiónem meam: * inténde oratióni meæ.
    60:3 A fínibus terræ ad te clamávi: * dum anxiarétur cor meum, in petra exaltásti me.
    60:4 Deduxísti me, quia factus es spes mea: * turris fortitúdinis a fácie inimíci.
    60:5 Inhabitábo in tabernáculo tuo in sǽcula: * prótegar in velaménto alárum tuárum.
    60:6 Quóniam tu, Deus meus, exaudísti oratiónem meam: * dedísti hereditátem timéntibus nomen tuum.
    60:7 Dies super dies regis adícies: * annos eius usque in diem generatiónis et generatiónis.
    60:8 Pérmanet in ætérnum in conspéctu Dei: * misericórdiam et veritátem eius quis requíret?
    60:9 Sic psalmum dicam nómini tuo in sǽculum sǽculi: * ut reddam vota mea de die in diem.
    V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
    R. Sicut erat in princípio, et nunc, et semper, * et in sǽcula sæculórum. Amen.

    Ant. Immíttet Ángelus Dómini in circúitu timéntium eum: et erípiet eos.
    10
    Psalm 60 [3]
    60:2 Hear, O God, my supplication: * be attentive to my prayer.
    60:3 To thee have I cried from the ends of the earth: * when my heart was in anguish, thou hast exalted me on a rock.
    60:4 Thou hast conducted me; for thou hast been my hope: * a tower of strength against the face of the enemy.
    60:5 In thy tabernacle I shall dwell for ever: * I shall be protected under the covert of thy wings.
    60:6 For thou, my God, hast heard my prayer: * thou hast given an inheritance to them that fear thy name.
    60:7 Thou wilt add days to the days of the king: * his years even to generation and generation.
    60:8 He abideth for ever in the sight of God: * his mercy and truth who shall search?
    60:9 So will I sing a psalm to thy name for ever and ever: * that I may pay my vows from day to day.
    V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
    R. As it was in the beginning, is now, * and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

    Ant. The angel of the Lord shall encamp round about them that fear him: and shall deliver them.
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    Hymnus
    Te lucis ante términum,
    Rerum Creátor, póscimus,
    Ut pro tua cleméntia
    Sis præsul et custódia.

    Procul recédant sómnia,
    Et nóctium phantásmata;
    Hostémque nóstrum cómprime,
    Ne polluántur córpora.

    * Præsta, Pater piíssime,
    Patríque compar Únice,
    Cum Spíritu Paráclito
    Regnans per omne sǽculum.
    Amen.
    11
    Hymn
    Before the ending of the day,
    Creator of the world, we pray
    That with thy wonted favor thou
    Wouldst be our guard and keeper now.

    From all ill dreams defend our eyes,
    From nightly fears and fantasies;
    Tread under foot our ghostly foe,
    That no pollution we may know.

    * O Father, that we ask be done,
    Through Jesus Christ, thine only Son;
    Who, with the Holy Ghost and thee,
    Doth live and reign eternally.
    Amen.
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    Capitulum Responsorium Versus
    Ier 14:9
    Tu autem in nobis es, Dómine, et nomen sanctum tuum invocátum est super nos: ne derelínquas nos, Dómine, Deus noster.
    R. Deo grátias.

    R.br. In manus tuas, Dómine, * Comméndo spíritum meum.
    R. In manus tuas, Dómine, * Comméndo spíritum meum.
    V. Redemísti nos, Dómine, Deus veritátis.
    R. Comméndo spíritum meum.
    V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
    R. In manus tuas, Dómine, * Comméndo spíritum meum.

    V. Custódi nos, Dómine, ut pupíllam óculi.
    R. Sub umbra alárum tuárum prótege nos.
    12
    Chapter Responsory Verse
    Jer 14:9
    But thou, O Lord, art among us, and thy name is called upon by us: forsake us not, O Lord our God.
    R. Thanks be to God.

    R.br. Into thy hands, O Lord, * do I commend my spirit.
    R. Into thy hands, O Lord, * do I commend my spirit.
    V. For thou hast redeemed us, O Lord, God of truth.
    R. I commend my spirit.
    V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
    R. Into thy hands, O Lord, * do I commend my spirit.

    V. Keep us, Lord, as the apple of thine eye.
    R. Protect us under the shadow of thy wings.
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    Canticum: Nunc dimittis
    Ant. Salva nos, * Dómine, vigilántes, custódi nos dormiéntes; ut vigilémus cum Christo, et requiescámus in pace.
    (Canticum Simeonis * Luc. 2:29-32)
    2:29 Nunc dimíttis ✠ servum tuum, Dómine, * secúndum verbum tuum in pace:
    2:30 Quia vidérunt óculi mei * salutáre tuum,
    2:31 Quod parásti * ante fáciem ómnium populórum,
    2:32 Lumen ad revelatiónem géntium, * et glóriam plebis tuæ Israël.
    V. Glória Patri, et Fílio, * et Spirítui Sancto.
    R. Sicut erat in princípio, et nunc, et semper, * et in sǽcula sæculórum. Amen.
    Ant. Salva nos, * Dómine, vigilántes, custódi nos dormiéntes; ut vigilémus cum Christo, et requiescámus in pace.
    13
    Canticle Nunc dimittis
    Ant. Protect us, * Lord, while we are awake and safeguard us while we sleep; that we may keep watch with Christ, and rest in peace.
    (Canticle of Simeon * Luke 2:29-32)
    2:29 Now thou dost dismiss thy servant, O Lord, ✠ * according to thy word in peace;
    2:30 Because my eyes have seen * thy salvation,
    2:31 Which thou hast prepared * before the face of all peoples:
    2:32 A light to the revelation of the Gentiles, * and the glory of thy people Israel.
    V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.
    R. As it was in the beginning, is now, * and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
    Ant. Protect us, * Lord, while we are awake and safeguard us while we sleep; that we may keep watch with Christ, and rest in peace.
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    Oratio
    V. Dómine, exáudi oratiónem meam.
    R. Et clamor meus ad te véniat.
    Orémus.
    Vísita, quǽsumus, Dómine, habitatiónem istam, et omnes insídias inimíci ab ea lónge repélle: Ángeli tui sancti hábitent in ea, qui nos in pace custódiant; et benedíctio tua sit super nos semper.
    Per Dóminum nostrum Iesum Christum, Fílium tuum: qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitáte Spíritus Sancti, Deus, per ómnia sǽcula sæculórum.
    R. Amen.
    14
    Prayer
    V. O Lord, hear my prayer.
    R. And let my cry come unto thee.
    Let us pray.
    Visit, we beseech thee, O Lord, this dwelling, and drive far from it the snares of the enemy; let thy holy angels dwell herein to preserve us in peace, and let thy blessing be always upon us.
    Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.
    R. Amen.
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    Conclusio
    V. Dómine, exáudi oratiónem meam.
    R. Et clamor meus ad te véniat.
    V. Benedicámus Dómino.
    R. Deo grátias.
    Benedictio. Benedícat et custódiat nos omnípotens et miséricors Dóminus, ✠ Pater, et Fílius, et Spíritus Sanctus.
    R. Amen.
    15
    Conclusion
    V. O Lord, hear my prayer.
    R. And let my cry come unto thee.
    V. Let us bless the Lord.
    R. Thanks be to God.
    Benediction. The almighty and merciful Lord, ✠ the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, bless us and keep us.
    R. Amen.
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    Antiphona finalis B.M.V.
    Ave, Regína cælórum,
    Ave, Dómina Angelórum:
    Salve radix, salve porta,
    Ex qua mundo lux est orta:

    Gaude, Virgo gloriósa,
    Super omnes speciósa,
    Vale, o valde decóra,
    Et pro nobis Christum exóra.

    V. Dignáre me laudáre te, Virgo sacráta.
    R. Da mihi virtútem contra hostes tuos.
    Orémus.
    Concéde, miséricors Deus, fragilitáti nostræ præsídium; ut, qui sanctæ Dei Genetrícis memóriam ágimus; intercessiónis eius auxílio, a nostris iniquitátibus resurgámus. Per eúndem Christum Dóminum nóstrum. Amen.
    V. Divínum auxílium ✠ máneat semper nobíscum.
    R. Amen.
    16
    Final Antiphon of the Blessed Virgin Mary
    Hail, O Queen of heaven, enthroned!
    Hail, by Angels Mistress owned!
    Root of Jesse, Gate of morn,
    Whence the world’s true Light was born:

    Glorious Virgin, joy to thee,
    Loveliest whom in heaven they see:
    Fairest thou, where all are fair,
    Plead with Christ our sins to spare.

    V. Allow me to praise thee, holy Virgin.
    R. Give me strength against thine enemies.
    Let us pray.
    Grant, O merciful God, to our weak natures thy protection, that we who commemorate the holy Mother of God may, by the help of her intercession, arise from our iniquities. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
    V. May the divine assistance ✠ remain with us always.
    R. Amen.

    Matutinum Laudes Prima Tertia Sexta Nona Vesperae Completorium

  2. “but the Lord looks on the heart”

  3. Ann Marie says:

    I feel that fasting doesn’t have to be only from food and drink, but it can also be from destructive actions and deeds, but the important part is that it is done for the glory of God. It is a powerful means to turn ourselves back to God.

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