Fasting... that's a tricky topic.
Some say it's not still something God requires. Some say it never was... only optional. Still others avoid the topic all together because it's just too uncomfortable.
I know I did for many years.
I mean, who really wants to be uncomfortable? Why should I feel hunger pangs when there's plenty of food in the pantry? But if I do consider it, isn't there maybe some underlying hope that I just might shed a few pounds while I'm at it? Or that somehow I might seem a little more special... you know earn a few more spiritual points somewhere in heaven?
I've heard the complelling argument
that Jesus never gave the option, 'If you fast,' but rather instructed, 'When you fast,' in Matthew 6:16-17. And I've heard many amazing stories of spiritual breakthroughs people have had during their fasting. But it's just never fully propelled me into a successful fast of my own.
Which makes me consider
as I do many concepts of faith that are hard to grasp... this must be something really powerful in the spirit realm if the enemy is that intent on distracting me from the truth. So I have to say when I read what Isaiah spoke to the church leaders about it, I got smacked boldly in the face!
They were doing it wrong.
It's not that they weren't fasting. It's not that they weren't seeking God's wisdom. It's that while they were fasting and seeking God, they were also quarrelling and being oppressive to the people in their perish. Maybe it's because they were cranky and hungry... but still, they were not acting as God would have them, so they missed out on what He had FOR them.
The power of fasting
These are the notes I took from Isaiah 58:4-9. If we will humble ourselves and trust God in this time of fasting, these are the things we can expect:
The Lord will guide you always;
He will satisfy your needs
in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.
Isaiah 58:11 NIV
Will you consider a fast today?
Think of all the Lord will do for you! Think of all the Lord can do through you!
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