God has used famine as one of the tools to get the Israelites' attention when they violated the terms of the Covenant with Him, forsaking His holy law.
Atonement, when we are commanded to afflict our souls, is a time of self-evaluation and repentance. This is the only way to have real unity with God.
The intent of fasting is to deflate our pride—the major taproot of sin—the biggest deterrent to a positive relationship with God. Humility heals the breach.
Biblical meekness brings strength under control, enabling God's called out ones to tame the temper, calm the passions, managing the unruly impulses.
Do we 'cry out' against the ravages of sin among our family and friends? Or have we become inured to it, calloused by constant contact, or even apathetic?