Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN


February 27, 2012

A positive minute with Dr. Michael Layne

A time of self-denial

Greensburg — "Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. (2) And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungered..." (Mat 4:1-2).

I can tell you that I have never fasted for 40 days. I'm not sure what that experience would be like however, I do know from some people who have fasted for an extended time that there is a spiritual dynamic at work.

The history of fasting can be traced to the earliest of times.

Let's consider the Garden of Eden and what God said to Adam and Eve: "The tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: For in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." (Gen. 2:17)

It would appear that God called a "fast" concerning the fruit of the forbidden tree. The very act of fasting predates "original sinâ" thus, we find an ancient action which has been practiced by Pagans, Judaism and Christianity for centuries.

As we approach the season of Lent let's consider what we should "put off" during this time leading up to the crucifixion and resurrection of our Lord.

After having removed something from our lives for these 40 days, it is important to consider not taking it back up whether it is a habit, addiction or action.

This is a great time to start praying and considering what needs change in our lives. We all have something that keeps us from "fine tuning" our spiritual life and the act of fasting for a period of time will most certainly give us strength to overcome the problem.

The journey can begin this Wednesday which is called Ash Wednesday. Maybe in your church you will attend a service where the ashes from last years Palm Sunday palms will have been burned and the ashes will be placed on your forehead in the sign of the cross. This is a practice found in the Catholic Church and some Protestant Churches.

As we journey toward Easter let's tune our lives with a dedicated time of prayer and fasting. When we deny ourselves food for a period of time, the spirit becomes more sensitive to the working of the Holy Spirit. Jesus gained power over the devil's temptations.

You may be experiencing a "desertâ" time in your life. You're not sure what tomorrow will bring or you may not even know where your next meal will come from.

Do This: Instead of worrying about your unknown, start praying and spending time with the Lord. If you will spend as much time before the Lord praying for clear direction as you are possibly doing by not talking to him and worrying, your life will change. Mine has and I know many others who have practiced this, and it works.

You may not get an immediate answer but, the answer will arrive and it will arrive in time to meet your needs. God is never too late. He is always on time. The problem is our timetable and his are not always the same. That's where faith comes in.

Back to the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve did not exercise faith in the Creator. Because of their disobedience, sin entered into the world; thus our need for a Savior. We will soon experience crucifixion and resurrection of the Savior. Will you be ready to experience it also?

Start the journey this Wednesday at an Ash Wednesday service and just give it a try for the next few weeks as we journey to the cross.

Michael Layne, Ph.D., Th.D., is Bishop of the Diocese of East Indiana Lutheran Orthodox Church, author and can be reached at 812-662-5154 or Email:

Text Only
  • Dr. Michael Layne: He is risen Colossians 3:1-4 "You have been raised to life with Christ. Now set your heart on what is in heaven, where Christ rules at God's right side. 2Think about what is up there, not about what is here on earth. 3You died, which means that your life is hidd

    April 19, 2014

  • Rush County Chorale readying for spring concert RUSHVILLE - The Rush County Chorale will be presenting their spring concert Saturday, April 26 and Sunday, April 27 at First Presbyterian Church. The Saturday performance begins at 7:30 p.m. and the Sunday performance is at 2:30 p.m. There will be se

    April 19, 2014

  • Westport church offers chance to meet candidates WESTPORT - Mike Bartlett, the minister at Westport Christian Church, has organized a "Meet Your Candidate Night" at 7 p.m. on April 24, at the church, to allow the citizens of southern Decatur County a chance to learn about the people running for off

    April 12, 2014

  • church-gb041214-Port building pic The Port to build Family Life Center WESTPORT - The Westport Christian Church, or The Port, has started construction on a new family life center adjacent to the church, which is located on the corner of Mulberry and Range Streets. The Daily News spoke to Minister Mike Bartlett to learn

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Church briefs Cornerstone Christian Fellowship Cornerstone Christian Fellowship, 7414 East Michigan Road, Waldron, invites you to a night of Talent 'N Tacos to support our youth missions. They will be putting on a free talent contest with prizes. Following the con

    April 5, 2014

  • Dr. Michael Layne: Do you hear what I hear? St. John 12:20-33 During those years of working in law enforcement, I had answered many calls and taken many incident reports. For those incidents where there were witnesses, it was always interesting, even challenging, to take witness statements. In

    March 29, 2014

  • Church Briefs Sandcreek Baptist Church Activities at Sandcreek at this time seem to be many and all are most important. The youth are now practicing for their Easter program, and next Sunday evening they will run through the parts and music during their evening

    March 29, 2014

  • Keeping the faith: What we carry can be a burden Accumulate. It's a dangerous little word that is employed to describe gently falling snow; the harmless growth of lint on the top bookshelf; or the inevitable gathering of ragged boxes, rusty tools, kits and caboodles found inside our garages. But t

    March 29, 2014

  • Dr. Michael Layne: Giving up or taking on? John 12:1-8 Six days before Passover Jesus went back to Bethany, where he had raised Lazarus from death. 2A meal had been prepared for Jesus. Martha was doing the serving, and Lazarus himself was there. 3Mary took a very expensive bottle of perfume a

    March 22, 2014

  • The scars of forgiveness In 1939 General Francisco Franco, an ambitious Spanish military officer, became the absolute ruler of Spain. Franco took the title El Caudillo - the Leader - and he was ruthlessly so until his death more than 30 years later. In the decades that he ru

    March 22, 2014