33 days without any form of meat.
I can say that I eat far less food when eating meat versus not.
There is nothing else that fills you up like meat and keeps you feeling full and mind off of food.
That is, of course, my opinion. But I tried all of it, everything I found at the big veggie stores that cater to vegans. Some of it tasted delicious, some of it not so good. But whether it was delicious or not, it was, in the end, only veggies or tofu or some such thing and the full feeling doesn't last very long.
I'm sure it's great for your health - eating only veggies and such and probably good for lowering cholesterol levels. But I can't honestly say I "feel" any better than when eating meat on a daily basis (as some would suggest will happen). Though this is definitely not the point or purpose of fasting, it is still something I had wondered about for a long time.
As for the purpose of the fast, certainly there have been benefits of a personal nature of which I won't go into here, sorry. There have also been a number of mind battles going on, in the Christian realm they are called attacks from the enemy (satan). He doesn't want to let go of anyone. If he has you in any form of bondage - and if you are not saved, it's pretty much 100% guaranteed you have some sort of chains holding you down and some sort of addiction or things you do, usually self-destructive - that are keeping you in "bondage" to the enemy's desire for your life: to end up in a lake of fire. He doesn't care about any of us, he pretty much hates us, good thing God is FAR greater (being the Creator, that equation is easily true).
I'm still working through some things, to be honest, not easy things either. You get into patterns, habits in life and some of them may not be so good for you either spiritually, physically or both at the same time. I'm not talking about Jim Jones Kool Aid type of thing, not suicidal or anything remotely close to that, but we tend to look at things in life and think: "well that's not really so bad" in comparing it to everyone else or looking at the news and seeing all kinds of mayhem going on in this world.
Perhaps God sees your life differently and desires you to live a better life that is more spiritually fulfilled and that is a life that is pleasing to the Father in Heaven. Perhaps there is a greater purpose for your life which you may have not even thought about, much less explored. I have gone through all the thought processes - as much as I know anyway - in such realms and have come to the conclusion that there is nothing in this world that compares to simply loving the Lord with all of my heart and following hard after Him.
However, I can also honestly say that there are 3 T-Bone steaks sitting my refrigerator. I was going to get New York Strip or even Porterhouse, but I opted for the "bargain" priced stuff instead (50% off at Fry's). And besides, any steak will taste like a Porterhouse at this point!
So, the "prophecies" of the doom and gloomers are starting to come to light. Not that I wanted to see any of it happen, but, the fact of the matter is, inflation is here and not going away. Food prices continue to rise and so does the cost of just about everything else. A few are "prescribing" that food prices will literally soar in the next 3 months.
I read such things and wonder if they are going to occur. I then think that if they do, there is nothing much I can do about it and therefore, why bother worrying. I can store up some food in the pantry and try to save up a bit of extra cash if things get really tight, but in the end, I only have God and Him alone to trust and obey.
I have lived in poverty in the past and can honestly say that I don't think ill of the time I spent in such condition. It does, actually, cause' you to be more thankful for the little things you do have and if you acquire something that had been out of reach for a long time, even moreso appreciative of having had the opportunity to acquire such. Such as the time my water heater went out and I went without hot water in the house for 6 months. I was so poor that I couldn't afford to buy a new OR used one. Or going through very hot summers with only evaporative cooling to keep the house cool. In 115 degree heat outside, the house would get up to somewhere in the low to mid 90's inside. I would sit there with only shorts on and a fan blowing at me, drinking a lot of ice water. But, I didn't sit there feeling sorry for myself, it was what it was.
I have considered the ways of the rich and have come to the conclusion that regardless of what income level you are at, you can either be happy, or very often, be extremely miserable. Considering the ways of the rich as referred to in numerous places in the Bible, being rich is not, actually, a desirable thing considering the traps and snare that rich men and women can and often times do fall into. I could go live in a small travel trailer, such as I have done in the past, and be as happy as living in this 2,000 square foot house. If I have a comfy bed and my dogs can fit in there, who cares.
Do I put such a great value on my dogs? To some degree, yes. They don't care what I look like, how I smell or how rich or poor I am. They are content to be fed once a day and show me great affection regardless of what is going on in my life. They feel when I am stressed and they always come to my side when I am under some kind of duress. I don't know how they know that, but they do. They don't argue with me or tell me that I "should" be doing this or that. They're usually only unhappy when I am unhappy but try to cheer me up in whatever way they can.
They do not, of course, take the place of human interaction or a relationship with the Lord, not even trying to say that at all.
Regardless, though I don't really want to be poor, I will be happy with whatever situation I am in. I have tenants galore living here - sometimes that causes problems and sometimes I dream of having my place to myself - but usually we all get along and the little things that happen are usually quickly forgotten. I am not poor now, at least I certainly don't consider myself in such condition. I only need look to our friends to the south of the border to confirm that. Or even throughout our own nation. Or my friend in the Philippines who told me a few days ago that many of the people in the area he lives in can only afford to eat once per day. Which is why, he states, Philippine women like to find American men and marry them. He states their living conditions almost always increase exponentially and worrying about eating 3 times a day or even getting 2 meals per day is no longer an issue.
Do you have to worry about what you are going to eat every day? I only think of WHAT I am going to eat, not IF I am going to be able to afford to. How many nations on this earth are full of people in the same such condition: malnourished, starving and whose only thought in the morning is where to get fresh drinking water and what they are going to be able to put on the table to eat for that day.
Yes, you have heard that all of your life and though it moves you a bit, it doesn't cause you to take any action (such as sending money to a missionary overseas to help him or her in their endeavors to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and in many cases teach the people how to farm and feed themselves). If you would really like to get a heart for people in such condition, which is probably a good percentage of this world, you need only take a trip to such a place and visit them first-hand. There are plenty of missionary organizations out there that will allow you to take a week or 2 or however long you wish to stay and see and experience first-hand what it is like. Your life will be changed forever. If it is not, then I suggest you really need to seek the Lord about the state of your heart and your potential dwelling place in eternity, as I would also suggest that it may not include any portion of heaven involved.
If you wonder, readers that have been reading me for years and there are at least a a few here, why I give out food to hungry people locally even when I'm not doing that great financially myself, you need only reference the above statements to get where I am coming from. I doubt that, when I stand before the Lord, that He is going to fault me for having helped the poor and needy. In fact, Christ commanded us to feed the hungry. I undoubtedly will have to answer for a lot of other things, but then there is the shed blood of Christ, thankfully, that atones for my sin. Not that that gives me a carte blanche pass to go out and sin and do whatever I please, quite to the contrary, I am thankful for my name having been written in the Lamb's Book of Life (you can Google that and find that in scripture if you please) or I can simply give you the scripture to look it up: The Book of Revelations, Chapter 21, Verse 27. No, I am seeking to live a life that pleases my Father in Heaven, not causes him to look at me through the eyes of wrath.
Whatever the case, I have a bonus coming in my next paycheck and a portion of that is going to buy a case of Bible for my friend in the Philippines so that he can hand them out to those that he knows will read them. Earthly food is good for the here and now, the Heavenly food - the Word of God - is good for all of eternity. A person needs both.
I am also tired of my own lack of faith. Am I walking in the power and authority that is to be had for the believer? No. I have never raised the dead or done other such things as the Bible clearly states is for the believer to walk in - for the Glory of God and the expansion of His eternal Kingdom (and no other reason, such as puffing up man or attempting to show what "you" can do). I have cast out a few demons in the past and I have prayed with people that had been sick for a long, long time and seen them healed the same day. Glory to God alone. But what this world and certainly this nation needs is to see the reality of God. Tumors and cancers to be eradicated immediately from a person's body; dead people being brought to life that are laying in coffins at viewings - people whose bodies are ravaged by whatever and filled with embalming fluid being brought back to life. These things are possible. I firmly believe that. God is the Creator and the Creator who made all of these bodies is easily able to "fix" them. It's "me" that's the problem. This is what I am seeking after: that the world may "see" God through the miracles such as what Jesus did when he was walking this earth and healing the sick everywhere he went.
But it's a battle. The flesh doesn't like it and the enemy most certainly doesn't like it, either. Anything that brings Glory to the Most High God the enemy would like to bring down and stop before it starts. But I will not dwell on the enemy too long, he is a liar and he has been cast out of Heaven and his fate is sealed. I have a lack of faith, that's what I am saying and I want that faith to be increased and that is one thing that I have been praying for during this fast. I realized that before that is going to happen, certain things in my life have to be dealt with and the dealing has long since begun.
With that I must be about the morning's business. Namely, taking a shower and getting ready for church.