Monday, January 24, 2011

How Bad Do You Want It?

To a Christian, there are things we believe we can obtain simply by walking out on faith.  We speak things into existence.  We speak words of victory instead of defeat.  We do not look at our circumstances for we walk by faith and not by sight.  We just trust in God’s word, and move knowing that God will guide us.   Are you with me so far?  Amen.  However there are times where things do not seem so clear.  There are situations where it just seems impossible to conquer.  It can be getting control over finances, tired of fighting with the spouse, tired of fighting with the kids, a major health issue, a family member in the hospital, or just tired of falling short. In situations like these, we then have to go before the Lord in prayer.   What do you do, when prayer is not enough?  This is when you have to incorporate fasting with the prayer, but are you willing to?
            Fasting is the practice of abstaining from food or specific items or actions for a specific period of time.  We have so many distractions in our lives where God is not the full focus. And if you believe in God, then you have to also acknowledge demonic forces that work against God and his children.  It is these demonic forces or spirits that come in the form of constant bickering between spouses or a health issue that just cannot be shaken.  They can be very stubborn and cause us to struggle more than usual.  This is where we have to not only pray, but we must fast.  We have to be able to deny ourselves the comforts that we are accustom to and concentrate solely on communing to God to move in our favor.  Because of these distractions, when we fast we are actually weakening the physical and mental faculties, which in essence makes room for an unhindered communication with God.
            If you are willing to fast, your fast must be serious and done correctly.  The bible says “Why have we fasted,' they say, 'and You have not seen? Why have we afflicted our souls, and You take no notice?' "In fact, in the day of your fast you find pleasure, And exploit all your laborers”  (Isa 58:3)  What is happening here, is the children of Israel is petitioning the Lord to move on their behalf, and have incorporated fasting in their prayers, however they are complaining for not seeing any results.  So God via the prophet Isaiah is rebuking them for their hypocrisy.  They claim to be fasting, yet they are still satisfying flesh.  When they fast, their servants are supposed to also observe it and no work should be performed, yet they had their servants working.  So God is pretty much saying, I did not work on your behalf, because you were half stepping.  When you fast, you really need to fast.  If you normally do not eat breakfast, then to say you are fasting from breakfast, is not considered a fast because you are accustomed to do without.  Your accepted fast would be to miss lunch as well. 
            There will be a time where we will need to go into deep prayer for something, and we will come to the realization that we must also fast.  We have to be willing to give up some comforts.  We have to be willing to put a halt to certain habits.  We have to be willing to display a measure of sacrifice to show God the importance and seriousness of our petition.  Remember, God knows what you are going through, so therefore your fast does not point out the unknown to Him.  It shows where you are lacking, and what you are willing to give up as an example of reverence.  Do you want God to move on your behalf?  What are you willing to give up?  This action also shows you where your heart and priorities are.  Amen!

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