Monday, October 13, 2014

Feasting in Fasting - Part 2


Ezra 8:23 “So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.”

Picking up with Pastor Kyle's Sunday sermon:
Repentance of sin and that which is not pleasing in the eyes of God is central and vital. Our Maker meets us where we are at in life, so know that our Heavenly Father cares about the information that He has already given us. So, we need to think about our life before fasting, because it is pointless without a surrendered obedient life.  We need to fast for a season, but also do it regularly in order to focus on God, tune out fears to hear from the Lord and learn from our Father in Heaven. Pastor David Guzik of Calvary Chapel in Santa Barbara, California wrote; “As with any spiritual discipline or duty, it is possible to fast without the right heart ad to trust it as an empty ritual, apart from its true spiritual reality. Real fasting – fasting that is partnered with real repentance and isn’t only about image – has great power before God.”

Matthew 4:1-4 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.  And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”

Along with doing it regularly, the way to implement feasting in our fasting is by doing it purposefully and alone in the wilderness (between you and God). Temptation will come because a comfort mechanism has been removed, so a wall of emotion will appear that must be given to the Lord. Spiritually and soulfully, we do not need food, because our Heavenly Father’s food is our provision. Man does not live on bread alone. We sincerely say: “I need you Lord.”, then, we will be driven and launched into the Lord’s ministry from that platform. We feast on the presence of the Lord, because we pursue Jesus. Our righteousness is Christ’s righteousness, not ours. We think that we are fasting about things, but its much deeper because it is about hearing from God. Its not just what is going to happen, but what is happening inside of us as He hears from us and we hear from Him. We fast to feast, and feast to live. Live for God.

In the next couple days, I’m going to post a couple Proclamations by two of our past great American Presidents that understood our nation’s need for “fasting before the Lord”. As you read their call to humiliation of sin in our life and world, fasting and prayer, think about the application today. Fasting brings blessings and joy in experiencing God in true loving relationship, which is what the child of God longs for in the deepest part of our being.

In Christ, Brian

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