FREEDOM IN DISCIPLINE
So, we are into day 5 now. Sometimes I think that the beginning of the fast is the hardest part. It is a total shock to our system. All of a sudden, one day everything changes and there are all these new rules about how we live our lives and what daily life now looks like (at least for the next 16 days). We know it’s coming, but that doesn’t really make it any easier. When we think about being a “disciple” of Jesus Christ, I think we forget that the word actually means “disciplined-one”. It is an interesting thought that the way that allows us to live life to the fullest is actually one where we have to abstain. How does that even make sense? Let me explain.
Two Sundays ago we talked about this focus in the context of music. The greatest music is impossible to exist without abstaining. As a musician you need to know what notes fit the key being played, so you abstain from all the notes that don’t fit. It is the abstaining from playing any notes that even creates real music … otherwise known as rests. You have to play notes and rests at specific intervals that coincide with the time signature and the tempo (beats per minute). AND as any good musician knows, you must abstain from doing other activity sometimes so that you can practice. All of this is called discipline. If you play whatever note you want, in whatever order, on whatever beat, and never pause, without any practice, guess what that is called? Horrendous. It isn’t even music. It is a sound that you would want to get away from as fast as you can because your brain can only take so much of that.
The music that we love (whether symphonic, jazz, rock, hip-hop, punk, dubstep or whatever) is played by individuals that practice a ton together. They have a deep understanding of keys, tempos, time signatures and when to change them. They are incredibly disciplined when it comes to the music they are playing.
OUR LIVES ARE THE SAME
Our lives are the same! If we live a life with no discipline and no rests, not caring about what anyone else around us is doing or going through your life will be a mess … Doing whatever you want with whomever you want whenever you want. There will no one that looks at you and thinks, wow … now there is a life well lived. The general consensus will be wow … what a train wreck!
We’ve all known people that have lived disciplined lives. They don’t do whatever they want, with whomever they want, whenever they want. They care incredibly about the people around them and what they are going through. They know how to play and they know how to rest. We have all looked at them and thought … now there is a life well lived. We can see that they are sucking the nectar of life for all that it is worth and loving every second.
Back to fasting for a second:) Dedicating the beginning of the year to God and to fasting and disciplining yourself to be as effective you can be for all of 2016 sets you up for a life that understands that discipline is beautiful AND that your fullest potential can only be reached through discipline.
Live life … love every second of it!!