The seasons and reasons of the Church calendar can shape our fasting intentions. As we travel through Epiphany-tide the themes of incarnation, light, the manifestation of Christ to the world , and the hope of Messiah’s coming kingdom. We may direct the focus of our yearnings and prayers to the fulfillment of all the words of the Prophets regarding righteousness (justice), peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit as we find them in the words of Zechariah (St, John the Baptist’s father), Mary, and Simeon.
And we may look to Anna for encouragement and inspiration:
36 And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, 37 and then as a widow until she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. 38 And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.
The world still groans under the weight of sin and the bondage of death. May the Sun of Righteousness rise with healing in His wings.
May special blessing abide on all who exercise true fasting intentions this day.