I love learning. I love when something new comes up to greet me and invite into a deeper understanding and fuller experience of what it means to be “becoming Christian*” in this walk of life. (*A term the desert fathers use. I believe it is a much better representation of the process of becoming like Christ, rather than representing it as a one time deed that occurred in the past.)
And I especially love it when I can glean from others’ research, because that is one of the things I least like to do. Research is such a burdensome struggle for me, and yet it brings such rich rewards to know the backgrounds in history, the cultural contexts, the origins of words and their original meanings.
In today’s devotion from Proverbs 31 Ministries, Suzie Eller shares her story of discovering the importance of “waging kana” –
The Hebrew word for fasting is Kana, and it means to subdue or to bring low. It is the scriptural word for either bringing down an enemy in combat or subduing your own soul in an action of humility. Fasting twice a week was a regular practice in the first century. There were minor fasts (from sunrise to sundown) and examples in both the Old and New Testaments of fasting for many meals and even days. Jesus Himself fasted in the wilderness for 40 days.
Waging kana. Bringing down the enemy in combat. Subduing my soul to gain a greater understanding of and ability to walk in humility. These are definitely themes that have been repeated over and over in my life, especially recently. I am feeling the need to fast. More specifically, I am feeling the need to hear from God, to allow Him to reveal how I am to fast and His purpose in what He wants to accomplish as I fast.
There is so much wrapped up in this idea. So much to sort through and unpack – my head and heart are spinning, but I can not quite make out the dance. In time, it will be clear and I will understand more. Suzie goes on to say:
Kana taught me where my strengths lie, and where my weaknesses flourished. It wasn’t a legalistic pointing of the heavenly index finger, but an opportunity to take an honest look at where I was bound, and how to grow.
I’ll let you know more about my own journey as it unfolds. But I can tell you now, I am excited and terrified. Excited to see how the Lord is bringing the puzzle pieces together, and terrified to see what the picture of my life truly will reveal. But this I know, my God is good ALL the time! His mercies are new EVERY morning! He is ALWAYS faithful! I can trust Him with every moment and every detail of my life.
Be it done unto Your handmaid as You have said! You are trustworthy, Lord!