Yesterday I asked you all to join us for a day of prayer and fasting on Tuesday. Perhaps many bloggy friends have never fasted before. Over the years I have received many emails from folks who have begun to make fasting a regular discipline in their lives and they are so grateful for how the Lord has used this spiritual discipline to move in their hearts and lives.
Today I thought I would do a post about how to prepare for fasting.
As we prepare to fast, I think the most important thing that must occur is to get everything out of your heart and life that would hinder the Lord's move in your life.
Some of the things that come to mind is: unforgiveness? bitterness? anger? rage? addictions? inappropriate relationships? Just for starters.
When I am going to spend time with the Lord or going to fast I always ask the Lord if there is anything that doesn't please Him, would He please reveal it to me? When something pops into your head, or someone's face comes to mind....that would be a good indication that the Lord is showing you someone or something that you need to get right.
It is amazing what will come to mind when I ask the Lord that question. Some times things even will come to mind that I didn't realize or haven't thought of in awhile.
Another way to see if you have bitterness or unforgiveness toward someone is this: Is there anyone that when you hear their name you get all worked up? Or how about this.....Is there someone that when you hear that they have had a huge blessing it just irks the daylights out of you? There is probably something in your heart towards them.
Did they betray you? Did they hurt you? Did they promise you something and didn't come through? Whatever it is, you need to forgive to have a clean line between you and Almighty God! Get it right!! There is still three days till the day of Prayer and Fasting...plenty of time to get it right!!
Yes, unforgiveness holds us in prison and does really nothing to the other person. What a waste of valuable time!!
Many have been hurt deeply by spouses, parents, siblings, friends, employers, neighbors, and even pastors!! But holding unforgiveness is just as much a sin as whatever they did to you. Christ says that unless we forgive others He can't forgive us. That's huge!!
For those who want a more indepth look at fasting....in the comments regarding the fast, Campus Crusade for Christ has a wonderful guide for fasting which can be found here. It is very comprehensive and would help anyone who is new to fasting.
A few years ago I posted a story about fasting. I am reposting it below. It is a powerful reminder of the importance of fasting and just how God can move.
After posting about fasting yesterday, I got the following letter from one of my sweet bloggy friends. I wrote her back and asked her permission to share her story. Due to the sensitivity of this story I have changed the name and all details.
I cannot thank her enough for sharing this story about the power of fasting. My bloggy friend and I both are convinced that fasting is what broke the situation with her daughter. And for the record, there is no doubt that for a 21 day fast it is more than appropriate to drink grape juice and tea.
Rejoice with this sweet bloggy friend after you read how our Miracle-working, Mountain-moving, Awe-inspiring, Gasp-giving God moved on behalf of this broken-hearted mom when she fasted:
One of our daughter's, Rebekah, got into heavy drugs. Her boyfriend at the time abused our grandkids. They were taken away from her by her choice because she decided to stick with her drug addict boyfriend. Her ex got the kids and would not allow us to see them for many long years. Even the laws at the time couldn't help us.
Anyway, not only did Rebekah get into heavy drugs but had to find money for those drugs and turned to prostitution. For years we would not hear from her unless a prostitute had been murdered and she would phone and say it wasn't her.
About 6 years ago I felt I was to fast for 21 days and pray specifically for her. I drank only water, tea,
and grape juice. When I started my fast we hadn't heard from Rebekah in about 2 years. At day 17 of my fast, she phoned and her exact words to me were, "You've been praying for me, haven't you?" I said, "Yes I have, why?" Rebekah then said, "I can feel those prayers".
Within a year, Rebekah was at a drug rehab center and has been drug free now for a couple of years and is out of prostitution. YES OUR GOD IS AWE INSPIRING and BIG!! He knew this mother's heart, knew I needed to have a relationship with her and knew I needed to see our grandkids. Within 6 months from fasting, out of the blue our grandchildren phoned me on Mother's Day and we've had contact with them since.
And that my friends is just one story that is a powerful reminder of why we fast.
Join us Tuesday, September 18th, will you?