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Saturday, February 28, 2004

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Isaiah 58:9-14
Psalm 86
Luke 5:27-32

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follow-up fasting

"They shall call you, 'Restorer of ruined homesteads.' " —Isaiah 58:12

One of the later catalytic effects of fasting is: "The ancient ruins shall be rebuilt for your sake, and the foundations from ages past you shall raise up; 'Repairer of the breach,' they shall call you, 'Restorer of ruined homesteads' " (Is 58:12). Our culture of death is by definition a culture of broken relationships. We have mass-produced ruined homesteads. If you will let the Lord rebuild these ancient ruins for your sake, your fasting and obedient follow-up to fasting is exceptionally important to the world. You are the very person the world needs desperately.

Think of the broken-hearted, betrayed, rejected, divorced people you can see healed by your obeying the details of Isaiah's teaching on fasting and its multiple, catalytic effects. Think of all the "fatherless" children, those with absent or "multiple" fathers. Think of their confusion and insecurity. Think of the countless abortions, abuses, promiscuities, and contraceptions. In love, fast each day of Lent by limiting your intake of food and drink according to God's will. In love, follow up your fasting by giving others opportunities for freedom, showing them mercy, and doing them justice (see Is 58:6-7, 9-10). If you follow up on your fasting, you will see every promise the Lord has given in Isaiah chapter 58 fulfilled, including the restoration of ruined homesteads. If you continue this follow-up, the Lord "will make you ride on the heights of the earth" (Is 58:14).

Show your love in a most needed, practical way. Take God at His word. Fast and follow up.

Prayer:  Father, send the Holy Spirit to teach me Isaiah 58 and give me the faith and power to accept its graces.

Promise:  "Leaving everything behind, Levi stood up and became His follower." —Lk 5:28

Praise:  The longer she fasted, the more Roberta felt her heart hunger for spiritual things.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Richard Walling, July 18, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 24, 2003