Today is the first day of the November Global Bridegroom Fast.
Inevitably, although I don’t go around trumpeting the fact that I’m fasting, someone will notice, and word gets around. From then on, whenever it comes to meal time, people start to apologize, “Oh, sorry for the food smell” or “please forgive me for eating in front of you”, etc.
But I don’t really mind, and I don’t actively avoid food. Why?
Denying yourself is the point.
Or, more accurately, not eating because Jesus is better than food is the point. Seeing food or smelling food or watching someone eat does make the hunger more obvious, but it also brings to mind the fact that I’m fasting, which immediately reminds me why I’m fasting.
So the way I see it, avoiding people just so that you don’t encounter any sight or smell or thought of food kind of defeats the point of fasting.
Torturing yourself isn’t the point.
I don’t mean to imply that it is wrong to not spend time with people while they are eating. I am currently in a different room while people are eating, but not to avoid the food.
I think to force yourself to be around people would be against the point. The opportunity presented when you’re fasting is to dedicate that time to other activities—especially prayer.
So pray! Take the opportunity and schedule some time in the quiet place. Don’t torture yourself; use your hunger to remind yourself why you’re fasting in, the first place.