There are times when I find my spiritual pantry seems bare: no nuggets, no nibbles, nothing. I have come to recognize that much like my times of wondering through my kitchen, it isn't because I have no resources (no food in the house); it is because I have no appetite for what I have available (I'm not in the mood for last night's leftovers).
The Society of St. John the Evangelist is an Episcopal Monastic Order that has often been a source of new flavors for me to try. This week was no exception.
The SSJE online meditation suggested that part of our prayer practice should include examining the places where our lives are over full. Is your calendar to full? Is your day overflowing with things that deplete you? Are you filling yourself with things that leave you feeling bloated yet unsatisfied? Are you full of unexpressed emotion or pain?
The desire of the human spirit is the longing for relationship, the yearning for connection: with the Divine and with the other. Fasting is about making space for these opportunities, perhaps even emptying some of the receptacles of our being. For the monastics say, "If you're too full, you can't pray."