The next 21 days will be an exciting time for the people of H.O.T. Church, as we will be undertaking a season of prayer and fasting. The primary objective of the fast is that we would gain a great level of intimacy with God as we start the New Year. There is no doubt that there will be many other spiritual and physical benefits to this undertaking.
Fasting, simply defined, means abstaining from food for a spiritual purpose. During this season, you are encouraged to substitute times of eating with times of prayer. The discipline of fasting releases anointing, which is the favor and the blessing of God on a person’s life. If you are expecting to see God do something special in 2016, then this time of fasting is for you.
Remember, fasting is about focusing on Jesus, not about abstaining from food.
Fasting Is A Personal Event:
Matthew 16:16-18 – “Simon Peter answered and said, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon Bar-jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.’”
Fasting Is A Form Of Worship:
Luke 2:37 – “…and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years, who did not depart from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.”
HOW TO START FASTING
Where Do I Begin?
Begin by preparing your mind, heart, spirit, and body. It is important to have a clear purpose for fasting and for what you hope to gain from your fast. Perhaps you are praying about a specific life decision, asking God’s blessing, or requesting revival in your life. The best way to develop your purpose is to study why people fasted in Bible times.
Secondly, pray to the Lord and ask Him to reveal the motives of your heart, any unconfessed sin, and areas in your life that He desires to change. In Isaiah 29:13, God says, “…These people come near to Me with their mouth and honor Me with their lips, but their hearts are far from Me. Their worship of Me is made up only of rules taught by men.” Isaiah 59:2 also instructs us to come before God with a clean heart: “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.”
To prepare your spirit for your fast, draw close to God through prayer and worship. Let God reveal Himself to you as well as why He is taking you through this time of fasting. The key to any spiritual preparation is intimacy with Jesus. John 15:7 says, “If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given to you.”
Finally, your body can be prepared for fasting through pragmatic considerations and planning. A few days before your fast, get your body ready by reducing your food intake, eating raw fruits and vegetables, and avoiding foods high in sugar and fat. Also, develop a schedule of how long you will fast, what type of fast you will be doing, and how you are going to adjust your activities to ensure that you will persevere through the fast.