Welcome to our weekly prayer and fasting update!
As you reflect on your regular fasting as a part of our discipline of seeking the Lord, I have a couple of thoughts for you about fasting:
- Fasting reduces the influence of our self-will and invites the Holy Spirit to do more intense work in us. Over the years I have found this to be true in my life over and over again.
- Christian fasting, at its root, is a hunger for more of the Lord. In the revival of the 1990’s, we often heard the cry, “More Lord!” We knew that there was more that the Lord had for us and we were desperate for More. Fasting refreshes that yearning.
What follows are some passages to assist you in going for More by preparing yourself first:
1 Samuel 7:5-11 (NCV) Samuel said, “All Israel must meet at Mizpah, and I will pray to the LORD for you.“ 6 So the Israelites met together at Mizpah. They drew water from the ground and poured it out before the LORD and did not eat that day. They confessed, “We have sinned against the LORD.“ And Samuel served as judge of Israel at Mizpah. 7 The Philistines heard the Israelites were meeting at Mizpah, so the Philistine kings came up to attack them. When the Israelites heard they were coming, they were afraid. 8 They said to Samuel, “Don’t stop praying to the LORD our God for us! Ask him to save us from the Philistines!“ 9 Then Samuel took a baby lamb and offered it to the LORD as a whole burnt offering. He called to the LORD for Israel’s sake, and the LORD answered him. 10 While Samuel was burning the offering, the Philistines came near to attack Israel. But the LORD thundered against them with loud thunder. They were so frightened they became confused. So, the Israelites defeated the Philistines in battle. 11 The men of Israel ran out of Mizpah and chased the Philistines almost to Beth Car, killing the Philistines along the way. 1 Samuel 7:6 When they had assembled at Mizpah, they drew water and poured it out before the LORD. On that day they fasted and there they confessed, “We have sinned against the LORD.” Now Samuel was serving as leader of Israel at Mizpah.
Daniel 9:3-5 (NCV) Then I turned to the Lord God and prayed and asked him for help. I did not eat any food. To show my sadness, I put on rough cloth and sat in ashes. 4 I prayed to the LORD my God and told him about all of our sins. I said, “Lord, you are a great God who causes fear and wonder. You keep your agreement of love with all who love you and obey your commands. 5 “But we have sinned and done wrong. We have been wicked and turned against you, your commands, and your laws.
Joel 2:12-13 (NASB) “Yet even now,” declares the LORD, “Return to Me with all your heart, And with fasting, weeping and mourning; 13 And rend your heart and not your garments.” Now return to the LORD your God, For He is gracious and compassionate, Slow to anger, abounding in lovingkindness And relenting of evil.
Jonah 3:5-10 Then the people of Nineveh believed in God; and they called a fast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them. 6 When the word reached the king of Nineveh, he arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, covered himself with sackcloth and sat on the ashes. 7 He issued a proclamation and it said, “In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let man, beast, herd, or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water. 8 “But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth; and let men call on God earnestly that each may turn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in his hands. 9 “Who knows, God may turn and relent and withdraw His burning anger so that we will not perish.” 10 When God saw their deeds, that they turned from their wicked way, then God relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would bring upon them. And He did not do it.
The Lord Jesus bless you this week with His abundance,
On behalf of the leadership teams of The Praise Community and Advent Church