Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Prayer and Fasting

Prayer and Fasting
Fasting hurts. It is not fun or glamorous. It makes you cry and feel weird, it can even cause many other feelings to emerge but the feeling desired by fasting is a closeness to God. Fasting is no good without prayer. If you fast without prayer you are literally just going without food. In the Bible you find many examples of fasting, today it is the same and has the same effect. It makes you humble at which point it makes you want to pray which in return gets God's attention. A depth in prayer can be reached during fasting which can not be reached in any other way. Can we pray without fasting...Of course we can. Does God hear us? Of course he does. Does he answer our prayers if we just pray...Certainly he does and it is a good thing because many people do not fast. Let me interject that some people may desire to fast but for health reasons they can not. When someone is admitted to the hospital if they are very sick the doctor will order NPO...nothing by mouth. Yes even to those who are diabetic.  OUCH...Here is my disclaimer...I am not asking you to fast. Do seek a doctors advice before fasting. But if you are like me some spiritual things are more important than issues which may arise from fasting. I will enter into it at my own risk and that is what I advise you to do...Enter into fasting at your own risk knowing that your body will suffer. If you don't believe me just skip breakfast, and then dinner trust me you will think your throat has been cut.  
When you endeavor on a fast you do not need to tell those around you that you are fasting. Some will pick up on it just because they notice that you are not eating. I don't think is is wrong to answer their questions in honesty but sometimes you can simply answer by saying I just don't want anything right now. It is true because your spirit hungers for holiness and a in depth walk with God. 
I share this with you only as an example and I don't think there is enough out there about this tender subject. I used to fast at least three days a week. I have been on three day fast,a seven day fast,a twenty one day fast which I failed at, and one time in my life I did fast 40 days. Did I lose weight yes of course but that was not at all the purpose as it is not the purpose now. I desire a move of God. I desire to see revival and most of all I want to see my children saved. I have a son who does not attend church anywhere. I have a daughter who only fleetingly thinks of God and then my other daughter does go to church and just needs to be in a deeper place in her walk with God. Why do I have a right to say this....well mainly I have the right because I am their mother who took them to church when they were young. Who tried to teach them about God and who prays for them daily. There is nothing in this life of equal importance. Did I fail them I think so. When they were growing up their dad did not go to church with us so they would beg to stay home with him instead of attending church. Without fail every Sunday they would come to me with the pleas "Mom do we have to go today" to which I would always answer "You don't have to go you get to go". That is still the way I feel today. Living for God is not a chore it is a privilege. It is an honor if you are chosen to be in service for the King of Kings. Is going to church important. Yes...You need to read the word of God but you also need to hear it. Back to fasting....Start small give up one meal...then two...then a whole day...24 hours then let God speak to you because I promise you will be speaking to him. Pray and when you pray..pray for me.....
If you want to turn your world upside down then fast....

Luke 2:37 - And she [was] a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served [God] with fastings and prayers night and day.

Mark 9:29 - And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.

Matthew 6:16 - Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

Matthew 6:1-34 - Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.   
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Acts 13:3 - And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid [their] hands on them, they sent [them] away.

Mark 2:18 - And the disciples of John and of the Pharisees used to fast: and they come and say unto him, Why do the disciples of John and of the Pharisees fast, but thy disciples fast not?

Joel 2:12 - Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye [even] to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:

Daniel 10:3 - I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled.

Daniel 9:3 - And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes:

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