The Fast.

I am writing this in the final hours of a 21 day fast I felt compelled to do after completing a 4 week series with my women's small group from church, set around the book, The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson. The concept of the book is praying circles around our dreams, around our fears, around our hopes, & our worries; life, relationships, passions, people, direction, you name it, & encircling each with prayer, whether physically or metaphorically.

In the story of Jericho, in the Bible, the people of Israel march around the city as they prayed, for 7 days, & on the 7th day they marched & prayed around it 7 times & the walls crumbled & they claimed the city. They physically walked around it & prayed for a miracle of epic proportions, totally foolish, that they had to truly believe with all that was in them, having faith that God would follow through with answers & clarity & it came in the form of the walls collapsing & victory.

I have been in a bit of a limbo in the last few years of my life. Okay...more like decadeish haha I've been a gypsy, I've moved often, I've worked at many places, I've schooled at many too. I've struggled, I've shut down, I've said too much & not said enough. I've loved hard & learned much, I've hurt & been hurt, been both the disappointer & the disappointed.

I’ve been torn down & built back up, I’ve run away, been stifled, been left & lost, & then re-found & re-filled with grace every.single.time. & through it all, I’ve grown. Leaps & bounds I’ve grown.
— Sarah Noelle

Especially in the last 2 years. So, when my heart felt pulled in the last week of the series that I needed to do a fast & pray for answers & direction, clarity & next steps, I had to listen. There was something bigger happening than just not eating certain things. There was a true calling, it felt like, telling me to deny myself & my vices & focus my prayers to the next steps in my life & things that needed to happen for me to move forward in my life, towards my beautiful future.

I have learned something huge about myself over the past 21 days...I have emotional crutches. Crutches that have been my go-to's to salve the pain of having to truly feel out my emotions & listen for answers with a clear mind & heart & spirit over the years.

Using different things to replace having to really look my ish in the eye & say, 'Alright, it's just you & me, let's settle this once & for all!' But that is exactly what happened the last 21 days. For the first time, I was able to properly, healthily, & effectively handle, regardless of how much it hurt at times, a very specific answer I was given that I didn't expect. I did it. Me! I listened & watched, with ears & eyes wide open to what God wanted to show me & I was able to work through it without using any crutches, but by simply praying circles around my gaining clarity & answers & next steps & direction, & being able to take whatever was given as an answer regardless of whether it was the answer I wanted or not to the questions I'd asked or not.

I will be forever grateful that I truly listened & followed through when I felt that pull.

It allowed me to see a side of myself that I didn't realize existed & allowed me a connection with my Creator that I never dreamed I could experience.

I can only hope, moving forward, that when things get crazy & that fear or doubt in myself creeps in, that I can access this feeling & this connection & cling to the fact that I am capable & strong & enough when I place my trust in Him knowing that His will for my life is far beyond & above what my feeble mind can comprehend right now.

There is more to come later this year about things I'm learning even now this year, not just through the fast, that will be carrying me into new adventures in the months to come but for now, I leave y'all with this:

Listen when you hear that little voice spurring you to do something that albeit scary or hard, has incredible rewards in store on so many levels. It may come in the form of a friend, of an enemy, of a song, a video, a random overheard conversation on the street, pretty much anything.

I can do all things that I genuinely set my mind to...& so can you! Believe it. Do it.

You owe it to yourself! Stay aware of those little pushes, because they could end up becoming something that can truly change your life. 

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