Why Do We Fast?

March 3, 2017
Friday after Ash Wednesday
The Gospel Today
Matthew 9:14-15

The disciples of John approached Jesus and said,
“Why do we and the Pharisees fast much,
but your disciples do not fast?”
Jesus answered them, “Can the wedding guests mourn
as long as the bridegroom is with them?
The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them,
and then they will fast.”

REFLECTION (Sem. Peter Collin C. Crisostomo)

Today is the First Friday of the Month and the Friday after Ash Wednesday. We are all invited today to reflect on the question usually given during Lent, “Why do we Fast?” Strictly speaking, fasting is to abstain from things that gives pleasure and satisfaction to us. It is not just depriving ourselves but it also teaches us that sometimes it is also good to do away with our usual things. Commonly, we hear about fasting especially in food. We merely abstain from meat. But fasting also helps our body to reenergize itself. When we fast, the heavy loads that we consumes now becomes light and helps our body function well.

For me aside from food, we can also fast from the things we usually do. For example, instead of spending so much time in front of the computer, we could devote some time with nature, do some gardening and be one with nature. It rejuvenates one’s energy. Instead of spending so much time with our vices, why not spend more time with our love ones and attend to someone’s needs. In that way at least we can say that we did something good.

In this Lenten season, we are invited to reflect on our life. Are we living a life that is fruitful and just? Is our spiritual life being nourished by the things we are doing every day, or are we too tied-up with the pleasure given to us by this world that we forget that life here on earth is not permanent? What is permanent is our life with God.

May this Lenten Season lead us to contemplation and direct us to Christ’s Resurrection. May we all be united in Him at the end of time.

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