Fasting: Door to a deeper relationship with God
Text: Daniel Chapters 1 and 10; Ezra 8
Key Verse: Genesis 1:26 “Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me.” (NIV).
What is Fasting? Fasting is not merely going without food for a period of time. That is starving – maybe even dieting – but fasting it is not. Fasting is not to be done only by Priests and ministers of the Gospel alone. The practice of fasting is not limited to special occasions. Fasting is for every believer in Jesus Christ. Fasting is not an option, but the duty of every disciple and believer.
Biblical Fasting is abstaining from food for a spiritual purpose, accompanied with praying. Fasting has always been a normal path to cultivating a deeper relationship with God. As expressed by the impassioned plea of David in Psalm 42, fasting brings one into a deeper, more intimate, and more powerful relationship with the Lord.
When you abstain from food for a number of days for a spiritual purpose, your spirit becomes uninterrupted by the things of this world and highly sensitive to the things of God. As David stated, “Deep calls unto deep.” As David was fasting, his hunger and thirst for God grew higher, more than his natural desire for food. As a result, he reached a place, where he could cry out from the depths of his spirit to the depths of God, even in the midst of his trial. It is my prayer that you reach the zenith, where your desire for God shall be far greater than your desire for food.
Fasting does not mean abstaining from food alone, it also involves prayer, which is critical during fasting to break through and hear what the Lord is saying to you. How do you determine what type of fast to do? This is between you and God, and it should be a matter of prayer before you begin.
In fasting, closeness with the Lord is your goal, and fasting is the method to reach your goal. Fasting itself is a continual prayer before God.
In Daniel chapter 10, Daniel was grieved and burdened with the revelation he had received for Israel. He ate no choice breads or meats and drank no wine for three weeks. An Angel was sent to him with answers to Daniel’s prayer, but had been delayed by the prince of Persia for twenty-one days – with the answers Daniel sought. His fast broke the power of the delayer and released the angels of God, so that God’s purposes could be revealed and served.
When you fast, you will raise up a foundation for many generations. In Ezra 8:21, we read these words: “Then I proclaimed a fast there at the river of Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before God, to seek from Him the right way for us and our little ones and all our possessions
First, you fast to seek God’s right way for you. God will reveal to you clear directions to follow in matters of life. He will help you at the transitions. He will give you wisdom and direction you need to navigate through life. You may be thinking, “Should I take that opportunity? Should I go for that Job? Should I take that step? What should I do? Should I be this or should I do that? You should determine to fast to seek Him the right way for yourself.
Secondly, you should fast for your little ones, your children. God said you could raise up a foundation for many generations by fasting. When you fast for your family members, the house of faith is built, and it extends from generation to generation.
Thirdly, we learn in Ezra 8:21 that we should fast for substance. You fast to petition God about your substance, your resources, and your finances. You affirm to God that He is your Source, and you are pleading for Him to bless you financially and materially.
In Conclusion, when you fast, you are seriously seeking God’s Face. Fasting disrupts business as usual. Is that what you are looking for? Are you crying out to God to do something in you that He Has never done before? Are you tired of business as usual? Then, get ready to begin your fast!
Today’s Nugget: Fasting disrupts business as usual
Prayer: Lord, Give me the Grace to seek your face through fasting.
Prayer line: Send text only to 09078154261.
Dr. Chidi Okoroafor, General Superintendent, Assemblies of God Nigeria.
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