There are some Bible verses that just lend themselves to being misquoted or taken out of context. One of my favorites is, “Where 2 or 3 are gathered together, one of them will be a pain in the neck.” Or the famous, “God loves a cheerful giver, but He will take it from a grouch.”
Here’s a verse that I love to take out of context, Philippians 1:6, “being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the Day of Christ Jesus.” I use that often in counseling when couples are starting to make progress and wondering if they can see their marriage improve. I think it’s true and I think it applies. God has started the healing and He will finish it.
It also seems to work for fasting. God has started us down this path of deeper commitment and He will take us to the end. He is doing a new work in us as a result of our sacrifice and He will continue to make us more like Him. That stuff is all true and so, I say to you today, keep on your fast. God will finish what He started in you.
Perhaps though, we can also return the verse to its rightful context and it still applies to our fast. This was a verse to the Philippians about ministry, about doing something. Verse 5 says, “because of your partnership in the Gospel…” In other words, Paul says, “God has started you working for Him and He will help you finish the job.”
So while we are fasting, let’s not forget the doing. This time of renewed dedication is also a good time to be about “my Father’s business.” What are you doing while you’re fasting? Here are three possibilities:
1. Write notes, emails, or texts today to 3 people that you can encourage.
2. Take a pizza and a few coloring books by a young mom trapped home with her kids.
3. Write a check to that missionary that you have been thinking about and mail it.
Whatever it is, don’t just not eat. Do something. Like the Bible verse says, “I can do all things through Christ, as soon as I get out of bed.”