Associating the number 45 with fasting sounds ridiculous, but who said extending a 40 day fast was wrong?
In the Bible, the number 40 is repeated a whole lot, but it is my understanding that in the Hebrew culture, 40 was not always to be considered a literal measurement of time. I remember someone explaining it to me [and a large congregation of people] in a way similar to the way I will explain now:
As I’m typing this post, it is Saturday the 16th of August, 2009. Forty days ago, it was Tuesday the 7th of July, 2009. I have no idea what happened on that day. If something significant happened on that day, maybe, but as far as I can recall, it was an ordinary day that I most likely spent sleeping in and pigging out on food. I more than likely also watched an episode of Talkin’ ‘Bout Your Generation that night.
It was the middle of November last year 40 weeks ago. I guess I was finishing up my Diploma of Business Management course at TAFE (ugh, I’m glad TAFE is over). It’s now my second [long] semester at UWS, and it doesn’t feel like I went to TAFE just last year.
Forty months ago was April 2006. At that time, I was in Year 11, still new to Penrith Christian Community School. Before the end of the year, the school board removed “community” from the school’s name, and they also promoted the new uniform. Since April of 2006, the current Year 12 class (grade above me) graduated, my grade graduated, and my brother’s grade (the grade below) graduated. April 2006 feels like a really, really long time ago.
The Beatles, Muhammed Ali, Julie Andrews, and Martin Luther King, Jr. were just some of the people who made the 60s a memorable decade. Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Can and the high-riding bell bottoms were at their peak 40 years ago, and people in my generation will definitely never really understand what is so artistic about a bunch o’ cans. Forty years ago, my parents were still kids. I think it’s pretty obvious that 40 years ago was a really, really long time ago.
The Hebrews didn’t use the number 40 as an accurate measurement of time, because 40 basically meant “a really long time ago.” You can’t really remember what happened 40 days, weeks, months or years ago. The span of time just feels as if it has been going on forever.
Why am I talking about the number 40? Why indeed.
The GFRESH leaders, connect leaders and worship team will be taking part in a 40 day fast in preparation for SOS 09, the Generation Fresh youth camp. Corporately, we will be fasting television, secular music and Facebook. In addition to that, we will each be fasting anything else that will or may hinder us or distract us from getting ready for SOS.
So, where do I come into all of this?