by Nick Papas
from The Word, December 2001
My dad oversaw many projects in his years of working as a manager for Westinghouse. He learned various managerial methods along the way. One fascinating lesson he passed along to me can be applied to the Church and fasting. It has to do with helping anyone involved in a project to see “the big picture.” Dad explained that seeing “the big picture” gives people a sense of fulfillment. Being able to see how their piece fits into the puzzle also helps them to do their work in a less burdened manner.
Often, when involved in a project, we have incomplete, strange and even wrong reasons given to us for why we are doing what we are doing. This can happen to Christians that are given the “project” of fasting. We often do not have “the big picture”; instead we have incomplete or poor information. By applying my dad’s managerial method maybe believers would find fasting to be less burdensome and more fulfilling.
What is “the big picture” when it comes to fasting? To know that God loves us! I am reminded of the story of when someone caught a glimpse of St. Herman of Alaska carrying a huge log. The log was well beyond the weight of something he should have been able to haul. Here is a literal example of a heavy load being made light. Did Herman possess superpowers? Yes. He possessed the superpower of the knowledge of God’s personal love for him.