The very first sin entered the world through eating. Just absorb that thought. Food is a gift from God. He designed it to taste delicious and to smell desirable. But, even in our eating, God gives us limits.
From the beginning, the desire for more than we need or were created for has dominated our relationship with God. Eve was tempted to eat the only thing God forbade her to eat. In fact, she was tempted by more. The idea that God was withholding something good from her was the hook, line and sinker.
Fasting has its place in a believers life, because when we are hungry, we are reminded of our need. We also learn to say no to our flesh. Our flesh cries out to be satisfied, whether its the satisfaction of revenge, comfort, or sexual greed. We try to fill our appetites and satiate our hunger for fulfillment.
Nabeel Qureshi, the author of Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus, once pondered why so many Christian men are addicted to pornography. He asked his audience if believers fasted more, if they would learn to say no to their fleshly desires. Perhaps, they would? Fasting may be the key to crucifying the flesh that every believer needs in his or her life.
“Look, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughter had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy” Ezekiel 16:49
The list of sins that Sodom was steeped in may bring a shudder to an American. We are full of pride, fullness of food, abundance of idleness and self-centeredness. It is interesting that Isaiah 58 says,
“Is this not the fast that I have chosen:
To loose the bonds of wickedness,
To undo the [c]heavy burdens,
To let the oppressed go free,
And that you break every yoke?
7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry,
And that you bring to your house the poor who are [d]cast out;
When you see the naked, that you cover him,
And not hide yourself from your own flesh?
8 Then your light shall break forth like the morning,
Your healing shall spring forth speedily,
And your righteousness shall go before you;
The glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.
9 Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer;
You shall cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am.’
Our fasting may be difficult. We may be tired of depriving ourselves of our favorite foods, or food in general. We may be tired of getting up early in the morning, but in denying ourselves and listening to the Lord, perhaps we will have less of ourselves and more room for other people – like the poor and needy. In fact, how many of us have expensive personal habits, but pinch pennies with God or with helping those who are in need?
Yet, the things we long for the most, the areas we really desire to see a breakthrough in, are the walls that would fall, if we gave up our personal comforts to help others in need. If we repented and turned to the Lord in every area of our lives, we would see our healing spring forth speedily. This includes emotional healing, relational healing and the like.
For those of you who are committed to this 21 day fast, perhaps you are feeling weak? Is your strength waning? This is a good place to be. Let yourself be poured out before the Lord, so the Lord can fill you up!
Are you ready to have your prayers answered? Are you doing what the Lord has called you to with this fast? Are you also living in repentance? Then lets declare the Word of the Lord and go into his throne room with confidence in his ability and desire to keep his promises!
Father, in Jesus’ name, I submit myself to you. I am tired. This fast is difficult. It is hard to say no to my flesh for this amount of time. I give you my weaknesses. Be strong in them. Be exalted, Oh Lord, in the middle of this time of dedication to you. Lord, I repent of anything and everything in my life that resembles Sodom.
I repent for being overfed and under concerned. I repent for filling my desires for satisfaction, instead of filling myself with you. Forgive me for pride. Forgive me for idleness. Forgive me to not expending myself for the poor, in Jesus’ name.
Jesus, you took my sin and exchanged it for your righteousness. Thank you. Now hear my prayers. I have obeyed you. Deliver me from evil. Bring healing to my life. It says in your Word that I when I call, you will answer me quickly.
Thank you for your answers. Thank you for seeing me and hearing me. Deliver me from my enemies.
Pray for physical healing for you and others.
Pray for financial blessing and for debt to be forgiven and paid down.
Pray for salvation for lost loved ones.
Pray for a spiritual breakthrough and for God to do a great, fresh, new and mighty work in your heart.
Pray that God will reveal Jesus to you, in all of his glory. Seeing and knowing Jesus Christ is the greatest joy. Pray for a greater knowledge of Jesus.