For 40 days a local pastor goes on a spiritual journey.
He doesn’t have to buy a plane ticket or leave the city, instead, he makes a sacrifice.
For 40 days, Pastor Anthony Harris fasts and prays, gaining a closer relationship with God.
“It isn’t our strength, it is His strength, and this is the thing I have learned about fasting is its a humbling experience and it draws you closer to Christ in ways you cannot imagine,” said Harris, the pastor at St. John’s Baptist Church.
This is Harris’ 8th time fasting.
He tried it twice in the 90s and failed. The first time he made it 7 days, the second time he made it 14.
He says his mistake was doing it on his own.
“It is always a mistake when we decide we are going to do something and leave God out of it, and so I didn’t do any preparing I didn’t know what to do I just decided to see if this could be done and I lasted 7 days and immediately I said to myself this is impossible.”
After the two failed attempts, Harris stopped thinking about it but says one day God spoke to him and told him to try again.
“He spoke to me as if we are speaking right now and said I want 40 days.”
That time, he made it but it wasn’t without some struggles.
“God brought me through to the very end but it was not an easy journey, the mental stress of Satan suggesting that God doesn’t care this is God’s way of killing you often entered my mind, towards the end the last 3-4 days I thought I was losing my mental capacity to be able to think rationally,” added Harris.
He has since successfully fasted multiple times, now he does it with his daughter who is also in ministry.
“You see the growth in each other and it is just encouraging to know we are both progressing in our faith,” said Zakiyyah Hill, Harris’ daughter.
Harris keeps his fasting a secret from most people, but says that can be difficult.
“I am a pastor and I have to go out to functions and often times those functions include a meal and often times people wonder, why isn’t he eating, what is wrong with him?”
Fasting for Harris is helpful when it comes to patience, being a leader for his congregation and building a closer relationship with God.
“It is not about me, it is about Him, this journey I am on starts with Him and ends with Him and how refreshing it is to know I serve a God that can bring me through and take me through any ordeal I am going through as long as I learn to depend on Him and not myself.”
During the fast Harris does drink a lot of water and has one protein shake a day.
He says after a fast it usually takes him a few days to adjust to eating again.
He starts slow with things like jello and oatmeal and in about 7 days can add meat again.
Pastor Harris has tips for fasting in this MyHighPlains.com digital exclusive: