Graceologie Episode 73: Wendy Speake
What would you be willing to give up to experience the powerful presence of God in your life again?
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Wendy Speake joins me for episode #73 to talk about how the trap of running to food and sugar instead of Jesus.
QUOTES & NOTES:
Fad diets and workout routines can’t set you set you free, but God can.
Fasting is merely denying yourself something temporal and ordinary in order to experience the One who is eternally extraordinary.
We suffer spiritually each time we reach for a sugar high rather than the Most High.
The 40-Day Sugar Fast is for those who are sugar-dependent but long to be dependent on God. You’ve tried to muscle through and grab hold of self-control—and all the other fruits of God’s Spirit—on your own, but it doesn’t work that way. Abide in Him, consume Him, and His fruit will consume you and transform you.
Ask God to speak to you about anything in your kitchen that you are running to, in a frenzied or habitual attempt to satisfy your soul’s deep hunger and then give it to Him as an offering.
Fasting from physical food increases one’s spiritual hunger, and that’s the hunger that leads not only to a transformed body but also to a transformed life.
When God sets us free from the strongholds in our lives, we’re free to experience His strong hold.
“Even now,” declares the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.” (Joel 2:12 NIV)
Fasting is abiding on a gut level—an empty gut level.
Satan hates you. But for the most part, he pays you no mind as long as you are entangled in sin and struggling with shame. He likes you lethargic and ineffective. He prefers it when you struggle with migraines and emotional instability, when you are irritated with your spouse and your kids and your coworkers. He loves it when you blow up at your family or friends over a sugar-induced spike and crash. However, when you turn to Christ for His free and freeing power, Satan takes offense and goes on the offensive. He hates it when you fast and pray because he knows that each time you go to God rather than to sugar to fill your longings, the spirit of God floods into the empty places in your heart and life. Satan hates losing ground.
My issue isn’t actually with sugar, or with food, but with hunger—misplaced, insatiable hunger.
As you get more hungry for Christ, you may find yourself getting hungrier for what He hungered for.
We’re not looking for other people’s attention as we fast and give and pray; we’re after God’s attention and affection. That’s the reward.
The reward for giving and praying and fasting is found in the giving, praying, and fasting.
As we fast from food and feast on Him, He fills the empty places in our hearts and lives with Himself. Even now, as we go without, He goes within.
“Thanks for the sugar, but I want it all.” (God)
“Fasting is abstaining from anything that hinders prayer.” (Andrew Bonar)
We abstain so that He might sustain.
The One who made our core is the only One able to fill it.
“There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God the Creator, made known through Jesus Christ.” (Bill Bright)
God has the power to turn our hollow places into a hallowed place.
“God made us to crave—to desire eagerly, want greatly, and long for Him. But Satan wants to do everything possible to replace our craving for God with something else. (Lysa TerKeurst, Made to Crave Devotional)
The quickest way to recognize an idol in your life is to notice your response when it is taken away. If it trips you up, you’ve likely stumbled upon a stumbling block.
If you are convinced that you can’t forego alcohol for 40 days, then I am convinced there’s nothing you need to do more.
Nothing heightens our physical and spiritual alertness like fasting. Conversely, nothing tampers with our physical and spiritual alertness quite like alcohol.
“Let your hunger pangs become like church bells calling you to prayer.” (Bill Gaultiere)
If you want a changed life, you must do more than just change your diet. Eating sugar-free may enhance your life, but only the Lord Himself can transform it.
Consider how you might increase your physical hunger as a means of unleashing your spiritual hunger.
You’ll be reminded by every empty-belly growl that you’re fasting from sugar in order to feast on Him. Allowing yourself to go physically hungry enables your heart to grow spiritually hungry.
I recognize how countercultural and counterintuitive it is to let yourself go hungry, but when you push through the discomfort, you’ll experience a deeper comfort than any comfort food could ever provide.
Don’t be afraid to get hungry; be afraid of a life that never hungers for God.