Any act of spiritual observance should have as its aim, our growth in holiness. If fasting leads to quarrelling and fighting (Is. 58:4), then we need to examine what is wrong. Our acts of penance should be aimed at pleasing God. This means that fasting should help us to put aside our appetites, egos and stubborn will, which can not only control us, but also act as deterrents so as to embrace the will of our God. It is the will of our God to be reconciled with Him, the self and each other. Reconciliation will come from the habitual practice of fasting, or letting go that which acts as a barrier to true and loving relationships. Fasting teaches us how to surrender and let go for a greater good and purpose. No greater love is more evident than to lay down one’s life for the good of the other. Fasting brings our bodies under our control, and creates a space for God and others. Lord Jesus, may my acts of fasting from food, selfishness and sin lead me to greater levels of growth in faith, hope and love. Amen.