"If you want things to remain the same, do nothing differently."
(submitted by Rob Parker, National House of Prayer)
1. OUR PURSUIT OF GOD
Fasting postures us to hunger less for the world and to begin to walk in a greater hunger for more of God. God is not content with only a portion of our hearts, he wants all of our hearts.
Fasting exposes compromises in our hearts and ungodly dependencies of things other than of God.
Fasting is God’s testing ground—and healing ground.
"More than any other discipline, fasting reveals the things that control us." (‘The Celebration of Discipline’, Richard Foster)
Fasting enlarges our capacity to receive truth and speeds up the process of that truth taking root in our lives.
2. PREPARES US FOR ASSIGNMENTS
At the very outset of Jesus’ earthly ministry he was led to the wilderness where he would encounter Satan. To prepare, Jesus fasted for forty days.
3. FASTING BECOMES A WEAPON
Fasting is also a weapon in the fight against Satan. When fasting reveals that our hearts are solidly with God and not the world, a huge blow is struck against Satan!
4. FASTING TO HEAR
Fasting allows us to clear things ‘off the plate’ to better receive guidance, wisdom, and instruction from God.
Moses, the nation Israel, and Paul are examples of fasting to discern God’s direction. see Ex.34:28; Judg.20:26; Acts 9:9; 13:2,3; 14:23).
5. FASTING FOR GREATER POWER
This does not mean that regular prayer is absent of power, but that fasting brings more power, see Mt. 17:21.
When Jesus returned from fasting in the wilderness, he came ‘in the power of the Spirit’ Luke 4:13-14. A God-directed fast can ignite God’s power within you.6. FASTING FOR BREAKTHROUGH
When things are tough, when you’re not experiencing any breakthroughs, or you are in a dry place. Stop everything and consecrate yourself. (Joel 2:12-13).
FASTING AS WORSHIP
Only weak people fast and pray; only those who recognize their increasing need for more of God fast. It is a declaration of our dependence on God.
We fast to be better equipped to pour out our lives more fully to Him. This is precious to the Lord. God receives this as worship. (Rom. 12:1)
RESULTS OF FASTING
Moves the Heart of God
(See Jonah 3:8 where the king of Nineveh declared a fast)
A heart that hungers for more of God will be filled
a) feeling "dry" spiritually and need to re-focus on God without any distractions
b) have become indifferent to the various needs around you
c) have lost a sense of the Holiness of God
d) fasting helps to awaken us to our sins and the need of repentance
e) therefore able to receive God’s forgiveness and experience His cleansing of soul and spirit
f) fasting trains our spirits, with the Holy Spirit, to be ‘masters’ of our lives, (1Cor.6:12)