Wednesday, January 19, 2011
*As Jesus began His public ministry and whom He chose it came out of a time of prayer and fasting (Matthew 4:1,17)
*Esther had her people pray and fast for 3 days. She needed the favor of the king. She saw fasting as the release of favor. God opens doors and fasting paves the way for this. He's going to break through circumstances.
*Barnabas and Paul were sent out on the mission field because of a time of prayer and fasting. (Acts 13)
*Don't quit fasting when it gets tough- this is spiritual warfare.
*Through prayer and fasting you bring an extraordinary God into your ordinary circumstances. Prayer changes things. (James 5:16-17)
*D.L. Moody- "Before you see the face of men see the face of God."
*Abraham's servant fasted to find the right mate for Isaac.
*Fast about everything- it will direct your path.
*"Pray without ceasing" (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Have an ongoing conversation with God.
*Some things only change through prayer and fasting.
*Prayer connects us to God. Fasting disconnects us from the world.
*Prayer and fasting increase your faith and God responds to faith, not need.
*"No one is a firmer believer in the power of prayer than the Devil and the reason he believes in it is because he suffers from it."
*We must be persistent in our prayers- to ask and keep asking.
*If you pray prayers according to God's word and God's will He's ready to move on your behalf.
*"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you." (James 4:8)
*The same power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead is available to God's people. (Ephesians 1:17-20)
*There is a connection with fasting and insight. Daniel turned to the Lord with prayer and petition through fasting (Daniel 9:3). What do you need clarity on?
Thursday, January 13, 2011
There are not only incredible spiritual benefits to fasting, but there are physical benefits as well. Obviously, losing weight is a natural benefit of fasting. Stoval Weems in his book "Awakening" states that when we fast "our bodies reset themselves." Also, Steve Meyerowitz in his book "Juice Fasting and Detoxification" states, "When you fast, you are on nature's operating table. The body changes hats. Instead of being in the business of receiving, processing, storing, analyzing, assimilating, discriminating, and discarding, it shifts to the job of house cleaning, removal, sanitizing, refurbishing and renewal. It is a big job and it is not without its inconveniences, especially when there is someone living in the house."
Just like our souls, the inside of our bodies needs a good spring cleaning from time to time. Fasting is a simple way of cleaning house. I encourage you if you didn't have a chance this week to pray and fast, to commit yourself to do this before we finish January 30. It will be a wonderful benefit for you spiritually and physically.
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
I am looking forward to our second church wide time of prayer and fasting called Awakening. We will not be alone. Awakening is an incredible event, consisting of churches and ministries all around the world, coming together in a 21 day season of prayer, fasting and personal devotion at the beginning of each year. Two of the main goals of the national Awakening campaign are:
- For churches and leaders to come together to pray, fast and seek God at the onset of the year .
- To inspire pastors and leaders everywhere to establish or strengthen a culture of prayer and fasting in their church or ministry.
This year I will be embarking on a 21 day juice fast. I did that last year as well. The point is not whether you go 21 days or not; the point is that you set aside a time to renew and refresh yourself in your walk with God. Fasting allows you to clean the gunk out and "taste and see that the Lord is good" (Psalm 34:8). I look forward to starting the year off again with this time of renewal. I am praying for an awakening!