Fasting isn’t about giving up trivial things (chocolate, candy, etc.) or making exterior changes in our lives (exercising more, watching less TV, etc.). Yes, these can be parts of the whole experience, but they need to be grounded in the desire for an interior change that springs from choosing heavenly things over worldly ones. Fasting means acting justly toward others, helping them with their burdens, setting them free from those things that oppress them, breaking the yokes around our neighbor’s necks. It means sharing with, sheltering, and clothing those in need. It is learning to sacrifice yourself for others and never turning your back on them. If we do all these things, then we shall be a light for the whole world showing them the path of love, mercy, and grace that God has prepared for us all. It is not enough to think, say, or do the right thing out of a sense of obligation, we have to do good works because we want to be more like Christ.
What are we fasting from during this Lenten season? How can we interiorize the act of fasting? What can we do to transform ourselves over this time of purification so that we can be more Christ-like year around?
O Lord, give us the grace to fast not only outwardly, but inwardly, too.