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“Be still and know that I am God.”

Psalms 46:10

 

 

 

 

 

“In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength.”

Isaiah 30:15

 

 

 

 

 

“Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God for he will freely pardon.”

Isaiah 55:7

 

 

 

 


WANT TO
REVOLUTIONIZE YOUR SPIRITUAL LIFE?


Participate in a 10 day media fast

WHAT IS A MEDIA FAST?

A media fast is a conscious, intentional choice to take a break from electronic media’s intrusion into our life. This includes television, radio, movies, videos, CD’s, tapes, records, the Internet, computer games, video games, etc. Participating in a media fast means choosing, for a specified period of time, to avoid these forms of data input. Yes, that's right—although you may have first encountered information about this event through some form of media such as radio or the Internet, the event itself is inviting to tune out the very source by which you connected. No doubt this probably strikes you as a pretty radical and revolutionary idea.

The fast is not primarily about what is being abstained from, however. It is really about freeing up time, energy and attention to devote to the most noble pursuit of God and family. Unless the time spent on media is replaced by positive spiritual pursuits, it might result in something like Jesus' parable in Luke 11:24-26.

WHY A MEDIA FAST?

Consider the following statistics:

  • Among church going families, teens and fathers average two minutes of personal time together daily.
  • Aside from church folks, the average American father spends 45 seconds a day in meaningful conversation with his children.
  • The average American spends seven hours a day watching television and a staggering total of 3,100 hours per year consuming mass media.
  • Today’s average 25 year old has already seen 2 million ads on TV.

Take this challenge: For one week, keep track of how much time you spend watching, listening or interacting with all the various forms of electronic media. Next, ask yourself how your life would be different if for that week the time had been devoted instead to prayer, Bible study and family. Want to know for sure what would have happened? Why not find out for yourself by actually making the switch for 10 days? You will probably find your spiritual sights being refocused in a powerfully positive way.

Just as some people choose to fast from food for a time with the intention of clearing their minds to more clearly discern the still, small voice of the Holy Spirit, this event seeks the same goal through a different venue.

IS MEDIA BAD?

No, media is not inherently bad. As a form of communication, media is morally neutral. It can be used for good or evil. Some media content is inherently positive and uplifting. Other content is destructive and damaging. The media’s impact on us is determined by nature of the content and the length of exposure.

In excess, even good things can become detrimental. Food, for example is good. But if we eat to much, food becomes detrimental to our health. Vitamins are necessary for life. Eat too much and they become toxic to the body. The choice to fast from food for the sake of spiritual discipline does not mean that food is bad. Neither is the choice to fast from media suggesting that all media is evil.

WHAT ARE THE OPTIONS?

1) TOTAL FAST – the conscious choice to abstain from all forms of electronic media even that which is spiritual in nature such as christian television, christian radio and electronic forms of religious music.

2) SECULAR FAST – the conscious choice to abstain from all forms of secular content in media while still enjoying spiritually oriented media.

3) SELECTIVE FAST – a minimal participation which fasts only from that which we know to be less than ideal for us. This might mean, for instance, choosing not to watch certain movies and not listening to certain music while still watching the news and consuming some spiritually oriented media.

WHICH SHOULD I CHOOSE?

You are welcome to participate at any level you choose or not at all. Prior to the media fast experienced by the members of the St. Helena Seventh-day Adventist Church, the pastor encouraged everyone to try the total media fast. Most chose this option. This is not suggesting that spiritual forms of media are negative in any way—just that they are not necessary for spiritual communion with God. The patriarchs, prophets and apostles needed no such media in order to discern God’s voice more clearly. Is it possible that we might find it easier to hear God's voice with the same clarity they did if our minds were focused on personal participation in prayer, singing and Bible study instead of vicariously enjoying someone else's spiritual experience as communicated through media? The person fasting from spiritual media can choose to make a joyful noise instead of listening religious music and choose to read their Bible personally rather than hearing/seeing it read or expounded upon.

HOW DO I PARTICIPATE?

Just do it. A group of members of the St. Helena Seventh-day Adventist Church participated in the media fast for ten days from Sunday, January 12, 2003 to Tuesday, January 21, 2003. The spiritual impact of the media fast was dramatic. Because of this we're encouraging every read of this web page to try it for themselves. You may find yourself so blessed spiritually that your choices regarding media are permanently altered.

If you decide to go on a total media fast, don’t fall into the trap of feeling that you are more spiritually enlightened than others who participate at a “lower” level of the fast or don't participate at all. An attitude of spiritual superiority will surely kill any potential spiritual benefit you might derive from the media fast.

If your employment involves some form of media don’t consider it a contradiction to fulfill your work duties and fast afterwards. This media fast is primarily directed at our discretionary time.

HOW CAN I BEST USE MY NEWLY FOUND TIME?

During the media fast, to give some assistance in using all that newly found time which was previously being devoted to media consumption, the St. Helena Seventh-day Adventist Church provided some spiritual activities to serve as resources. Each morning during the fast (January 12 - 22, 2003) from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m., the church fireside room was open for those who desired to start their day fellowshipping in group conversational and/or intercessory prayer. Each evening from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., we did an inductive Bible study on the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Both of these events proved to be a tremendous blessing to those who participated.

If you want to spend time in the Bible but don't know how or where to start, consider devoting some time to the gospels. Start with the gospel of John and read it at a leisurely pace. Give your mind plenty of time to mull over what you encounter in the stories of Jesus' interaction with people. Allow Jesus' life to shape your concept of the heavenly Father whom He revealed with complete accuracy and perfection.

Learning to enjoy meaningful time in prayer is a journey. Try allowing your prayers to center around praise and thanksgiving. If you need some help identifying things to praise God for, try turning to the psalms and let your heart be directed by the psalms of praise.

If you are a parent with children at home, consider spending more time in meaningful conversation and activities with them.


PARTICIPATION FEEDBACK

If you would like to try doing a media fast, our pastor and church elders will be happy to lift up a prayer on your behalf for the Lord's rich blessing in your life. Just fill out the form below or email the pastor directly (pastor@sabbathfellowship.org).

I plan to participate in the media fast in the following way:

Total Fast
Secular Fast
Selective Fast

I would like the following prayer request lifted up my behalf as I begin my media fast:


I have the following comments or questions:

My name (optional):

My email address (required only if you want a reply):