The god of Self

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A few times a year, I like to go on a fast. The fast could be for several days or several weeks. I fast various things: food, tea, chocolate, television, you name it, it might be in there. This year before Easter, I decided to fast for several weeks. A few things I usually notice when I fast became more prominent this year.

For starters, fasting sometimes can be compared to dieting psychologically. You don’t really think you are that attached to something in your life, and then Boom! You tell yourself you are going to go without it, and it seems to be the only thing that you really want. This phenomenon usually goes along with the fasting.

The first thing I noticed was that I indulge myself. If I want a cup of tea, I make it. If I want a cookie, I eat it. If I want to watch a television program, I turn on the TV and watch it. I don’t normally think of it as Self-indulgence, but when I stop doing it, my Self is not happy.

My Self wants to be catered to. It wants what it wants and it wants it now. It doesn’t like to be told “No.” It wants to be a little god and sit on the throne of my life calling all of the shots. It is strong and it is powerful and it is not easily dissuaded. If I want to kick it off the throne, it is going to take some deliberate effort and some discipline.

When I fast, I fast for different reasons. It could be to get God’s attention on a subject or it could be to get a prayer answered. This year I wanted to draw closer to the Lord. That sounds like something positive to do, but my Self, the carnal part of my nature, doesn’t like it. It wants to be in charge of my life and it doesn’t want to give an inch. This battle can go on daily and even hourly when I fast. 

I have never been successful on a fast in my own strength. The only way I have managed to give up something for a while is that I was able to do it in the strength the Lord gave me. When He was in charge, i.e. sitting on the throne of my life, I was able to continue the fast. I was able to put Self in its proper place.

The biggest takeaway I learned this year was that this god of Self is real. If I don’t want Self to be in charge of my life, I am going to have to quit indulging it so much. I am going to have to be aware of it daily and make an intentional decision to not allow it to call all of the shots in my life. Jesus said, “If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me.”

The ultimate question for me is, “Which god will I follow…the god of Self or the God I want to follow, the Lord Jesus Christ?” 

25 thoughts on “The god of Self

    • One of the best books I read on the subject was “God’s Chosen Fast” by Arthur Wallis. Fasting is definitely not an all or nothing thing. This time I did pretty well with the things God wanted me to fast…He gave me the strength to fast them. The things I thought that I wanted to fast…not so good. Hope you are doing well Keona! Sending my love your way! ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Hi Valerie,
    Surrendering self-will is the beginning of a new way of life.
    From my experience, the god of Self doesn’t have my best interest in mind.
    He’s just looking out for Self.
    As you said, he wants what he wants and doesn’t care who gets hurt in the process.
    But when I turn my will over to God, all I have to do is my part.
    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a really great post! I’ve never fasted. I know very little about fasting, but I can sure relate to the whole I want what I want. Yeah… like this Season I’m in. I’m sure God’s saying, stop fighting me. You’re going through this season for a reason. And I’m saying… “When am I going to be on to the next thing.” It’s silly. I know that I’m learning and growing, (I’m especially learning to be patient. *Big eyes*), but as you said, the self wants what it wants. And I’m learning I really can’t do this without God’s help, which is an awesome lesson!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Fasting and prayer must go together.. Otherwise it backfires. Also of course fasting from worldly entertainment, the internet…not just certain foods (meats, diary, eggs). Most all Vegans today are about the most demonically possessed people one can meet. Fasting from foods makes the body permeable(?) to all sorts of bad spirits too, if one does not properly pray for the Holy Spirit.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Good morning dear Valerie,
    The Orthodox Church has specific dates and rules for fasting and once someone learns and follows them, I can assure you that one’s life changes forever!
    Fasting in Orthodoxy is a way of living and not something trendy or healthy or whatever else people name it…
    And, I have to agree with the previous comment, this is what the Holy Bible teaches us.
    God bless you all!

    Liked by 1 person

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