fasting as returning

from the fasting as returning reading plan

Joel 2:12-14

BY Diana Stone

Text: Joel 2:12-14

“O God of Second Chances and new Beginnings, here I am again.”
– Nancy Spiegelberg

Our hearts and minds continually wander from God. That’s the humanity – the depravity of sin – in us all. We are unable to let His grace and mercy rule our lives. We pull away, turn our backs, and seek our own way time and again.

Often, we get so wrapped up in the “giving up” process that we forget what is supposed to take its place during these 40 days. As we discuss on Day 6, observing Lent is not just about abstaining from coffee or sweets, it’s the symbol of turning away from those distractions to focus on our Lord.

We ought take this time to look and see what God has done, to rend our hearts before Him. There are many times God has forsaken the comfort of His children that they might return to Him in repentance and love, like a good parent with a wayward child (Zechariah 1:3).

The Lord longs for our hearts to return to Him, for only in Him does our hope for eternal salvation lie.

“Come, let us return to the Lord. For He has torn us, but He will heal us; He has wounded us, but He will bandage us.” (Hosea 6:1, NASB)

Sisters, during this Lenten season – as we approach the cross – may our focus be drawing near to Christ. May we do so in a way that halts us in our tracks – a short, yet vivid reminder that we desperately need to return to The Lord. For all of us, in some way, need to return.

“For I know my transgressions, And my sin is ever before me.” (Psalm 51:3, NASB)

Lent is a time when we come back to Christ with repentant hearts. We know we will sin again, but as in any other relationship, time and love are never wasted. These 40 days should be a time that strengthens our love for what Christ has done for us, and increases our desire to know Him in a deeper way (Lamentations 3:40).

Rejoice that our Lord loves us so much that He waits, ever patiently, for us to turn and run back to Him.

I will give them a heart to know Me, for I am the Lord;
and they will be My people, and I will be their God,
for they will return to Me with their
whole heart. (Jeremiah 24:7, NASB)

Post Comments (67)

67 thoughts on "fasting as returning"

  1. Jenny says:

    Through this Lenten season of fasting I have found that I can not wait to get up stairs to my room after dinner and read my Bible and read my devo from SRT. Before, I would go up stairs and turn on the t.v. And then maybe read my bible and go to bed……. The Lord I believe is using this fast from t.v. To help me get closer to Him; "Even now, come back to Me with all your heart. Go without food, and cry and be sad."my food is t.v. and I cry out to The Lord every night to make me bold and courageous through him…….. I run to Him allllllll day -especially at night when I go to bed and read my Bible……..

  2. cas says:

    Hello, my name is Cas, Im a new subscriber to She Reads Truth,. I am English and have lived in Australia for 31 years . I met Jesus here in 1986 and then my darling husband in 1990 whom Ive been married to for 23 years. We have 5 grown up children between us including one son is in Heaven. I am happily married but I am not happy with my walk with the Lord, I want to be as much in love with Him as I am with my husband! Jesus should come first! I want the joy of my salvation back and I so wish to fast and pray regularly , to seek the Lord in His word, to meet with Him on a daily basis. I do lack discipline though and when I do actually sit myself down to pray my mind wanders. As a result of this sin I am floundering in my faith and not at all excited about being a Christian. Our children are not walking with the Lord as a result of our past attendance of a controlling, legalistic church. .How dare I expect them to return to Him when I cant even be bothered to stand in the gap for them? I spend most of my time saying sorry to God for not honouring His Sons sacrifice for me and mine and am wondering if Im going to Heaven. My husband recommended I join She Reads Truth (.bless his heart! He did a web search for me! ) as Im too prideful to ask my current church for help.

    1. Rhiannon says:

      Praying for you, Cas!

      The heart of being a Christ follower isn’t that we have it all together, rather it is that we know & fully rely on the One who does!

      Something that might encourage you is to spend time doing an old SRT plan! Maybe the “This Is The Gospel” plan we did earlier this year? And don’t feel pressured to fast from something like food, perhaps adding time in His word might be more encouraging!

      Let me know if there are ways I can pray for you specifically! :)

      1. cas says:

        Thankyou so much Rhiannon for your response and your prayers! I would love to do a plan,! I will look at your suggested one.
        No I dont feel pressured to fast. I actually do fast from food once a week, every week , although it sometimes feels like idle repetiion! Ive allowed myself to get into a rut but determined to get out and back on track!
        Yes I do have specific prayer need…please pray for the salvation/recommitment of my children,(3 daughters and 1 son) their partners…and for my 3 grandchildren (2 girls and a boy) I know God is up to something and I do have a peace that one day they will all return to to the Lord, i just wanna see it yesterday!!
        Thanks Rhiannon, bless you :)

      2. cas says:

        Rhiannon, yes! I started This is The Gospel today and have commented on it, thanks again for suggesting it , bless you c x

    2. Hi, Cas. So glad you’re here. May this place be a blessing to you and may you encounter Christ here. xoxo

      1. cas says:

        Hi Amanda, thanks so much for your response. Im sure I will be strengthened in the Lord through SRT, bless you for caring :)

      2. cas says:

        Amanda, I began This Is The Gospel today! I have commented on that study day 1. You are precious, thank you x

  3. speakyourlifesoullove says:

    This reminds me that God doesn't want our deeds, our material goods, or accolades – He literally just wants us. He wants to be our heart's song.

    These verses struck me a month ago when I discovered Jimmy Needham's "Rend" . This song has literally become my favorite!

    Sisters – give this a listen

    1. cas says:

      Thank you , I listened to it and wept! x

  4. Sindy Millington. says:

    What a precious word from Hosea ! Thank you .

  5. Sue:) says:

    I've just finished a bible study, and a section of it focused on the sifting of Peter. Sometimes, God allows us to go through some very difficult times, not to harm us, but so that through Him, our strength and hope is made clearer. It is often very difficult, as Peter found out after He denied Christ 3 times, but if we open our hearts and become vulnerable to God, He will heal us and restore our walk to a straighter path. Jesus did say that our paths would be difficult here in this world, but He also promised that He would never leave us or forsake us. Clinging to that promise today, and through this season of Lent. 'The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." John 1:5

  6. Kimone says:

    Good words. God sometimes leaves us to our own desires which will destroy us if we dont let them go and return to Him. Christ redeemed us from our sins not for us to go back to them. The scripture says as far as the east is from the west, so as the Lord removed our transgressions from us. It should not be in our intentions to sin again and we wont sin if we remain in Gods presence at all times walking in the Spirit that we may not fulfill the lust of the flesh thereof. If we have to sin it means Christ died in vain and my Lord did mit die in vain.

  7. abbymcd21 says:

    "Rend your heart and not your garments." Wow. This Scripture just seared right into my soul today. Lord, help me to continually look deep down, into the innermost parts of me that I may try to hide from others, and ask myself what I need to surrender to you. Each and every day. Nothing can be hidden from your sight, God. Even the most pitch black darkness is light to you. Search my heart, and have your way with me. Amen.

  8. Jerimiah 24:7 stands out largely to me here.

    I've been recently reading a lot on Christian singleness in our culture, this verse reminds me so much that God deserves (and expects) my whole heart! I was intentionally single for a 3 year span following a couple damaging relationships, and this last year and a half or so I've been open to dating again. As many of us would, after 4 years of single obedience I somewhat expected my husband to conveniently enter stage right. So far he hasn't, and I've lately become more discouraged. Jeremiah 24:7 is balm to that this morning, especially the fact that God gave us hearts to know Him! How personal that feels, that he would create me to seek after Him! That is the kind of romance I desire, and so often I forget that I already have it through my heavenly Father. I will (again) return to Him with my whole heart.

    1. abbymcd21 says:

      It shows how strong you are that you were obedient and stayed single during that time so that you could align your heart to the Lord. God has a plan! You could just be one prayer away from an answer, in His timing. Don't lose heart. Praying for you today!

      1. Thank you for the encouraging words and especially the prayer! I am not strong, but He is strong in me. :)

    2. nafisara says:

      Love that you shared this. I am right there with you. I am struggling with the same thing. I just find that surrendering whole heartedly really just keeps me going. It's pretty amazing. Sometimes I imagine if I had not been in The Lord, I wouldn't be who I am right now. Surely loneliness, depression, frustration, and anxiety would have taken me over. Be strong in The Lord Sister. You are blessed and highly favored. Xoxoxo

      With love,

      1. Hi Nafisa, such true sentiments! I feel that way as well often (especially looking back), what a wonder His provision and peace is even (if not especially) when we walk through hard circumstances. Thank you for chiming in and relating, I'll be praying for your kindred situation (and a specific godly man when the time is right). :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *