Update on 2015-12-30: Another goal for fasting and prayer is to find purpose in life. A good way to set New Year Resolutions for another year! How many new years does one have over a life time? Not many. God sets chronological demarcations for human beings to rest, recall, review, realign, refresh, rebound, and become real. The goal is to become real. Be real to God and let God be real to us.
An average person would not be satisfied with living from day to day knowing that one day all men must die and leave this earth without knowing why he had come to this life in the first place. One can find out about others’ life purpose by reading, studying and watching others. We can watch others growing up, being gainfully occupied with career, family, friends and may be hobbies, social work and religions etc. We tend to follow too and do about the same thing. However, is that all? What is our real purpose for living? This is a tough question for Jack.
One way to find out is to fast and pray. By giving up our physical comfort and deliberately focus on a higher level of existence one becomes aware of higher goal and the real reason of one’s existence. Not everyone has the same goals even though there are seemingly limited numbers of the usual goals. To sum up, most people want health, happiness and comfort in life. Security and relationship rank high in the happiness category. In Maslow’s hierarchy of needs pyramid, once a human being get hold of the lower basic needs (physiological, security, love and belonging), he/she aims for meeting the higher level needs like esteem needs, experience purpose and meaning, and self-actualization.
Whilst the concept is the same, individuals vary in the contents that make up the ideals. Of course, people tend to follow each other (keeping up with the neighbours). But they will soon find the void in their hearts unfilled. For example, we tend to think of others’ kids being so lovely and fun to be with. When we have our own we know life is not all lovely and fun. At times we think the opposite had happened and prevailed. We also tend to admire others’ garden and wish we too have one. When we have our own garden we lament at the compulsory hours of regular hard labours required. The same imperfect reality happens to owning cars, houses, high earning jobs, prestigious positions and interesting hobbies.
One pertinent question remains, “For what higher purposes are we created?” Fasting and prayer helps a Christian to find out.
The focus of Christian fasting and prayer is God. The more one focuses on the presence of God, the more one is able to receive clear messages about God and His purpose for our life. The content and focus of our prayers change. The mind changes its priority. The spirit (which has been slumbering previously) wakes up and switches to the God channel with clearer reception. This opens a door into a wider sphere of existence, way beyond our tiny little world.
But does God not care about our usual life in our little world? Oh, He does care. The difference is that He will open our eyes to see further sights and dream greater dreams.
There is a greater purpose for your existence and a higher goal for your life. No one can afford to linger on below that purpose. Start and find out now!
Yes, fasting and praying helps you to find the map.