Good afternoon! So, today was Sunday. I love Sundays! It is so much fun to get involved in corporate worship to our Lord and Savior with our family at Journey! I just love those guys, and they are so encouraging and uplifting to Andrew and me. Eric, our pastor, did a great job today on his message. The current series is called “Remember” and it is going through three things in the Bible that call us to reflect and remember. Last weeks lessons was on Communion, this weeks was on fasting; hence the title, “Life in the fast lane.” Ya ya, you probably thought I was referring to speeding through life, living on the edge, etc. But no, that is not what today’s sermon title referred to. Rather, it referred to a very important, special and wonderful Biblical principal of fasting. Fasting is depriving your physical body of something, whether it be a food fast, media fast, or what not, in order to be spiritually fed. Fasting, as Eric taught us this morning, leads to focus. Focus on the one who is most important, one whom which without him cannot accomplish anything of value in this life. Focus on none other than our Lord and God. Life in the fast lane, as in speeding through life, causes us to lose focus. Think about it, if you are speeding to fast, things get out of focus, blurry. When this happens, it is time to regain focus on life, spiritual focus. Fasting is an amazing and biblical way of regaining that focus. By depriving our physical bodies of something, it causes us to be fully reliant on our Creator for sustinance. The Bible does not say IF you fast, but rather, WHEN you fast (Matthew 6:16-18). Fasting was also something our Lord, Jesus Christ did in the wilderness in preparation for the awesome task set before him, the reason he was sent as a baby, born to earth. . .He came to die, die for our sins, so that through Him, we could be made righteous. Jesus fasted for 40 days in the desert! As Christians, the Lord Jesus Christ is whom we are striving to be like, our example. If he fasted, then I strongly feel that as Christ followers, we too, should fast. Spiritual hunger leads us to fasting and Eric gave us a few reasons when fasting is helpful, and in some ways, necessary. Fasting for clarity, as Jehosephat did in 2 Chronicles 20:3. We can fast for clarity in any of life’s decisions, when we feel confused or frustrated as to what way we are headed. One can also fast for courage, as Esther did (I encourage you to read the entire book of Esther, its an INCREDIBLE story how God uses all his children and will always give us the courage and resources to do it). We can also fast for breakthrough as Joel did (Joel 2:12-13).
I just wanted to share a little bit about what I learned today in worship. I highly encourage my brothers and sisters in Christ to fast when faced with any of these three periods in life. Fasting truly leads to focus, and gives you an incredible experience with the Lord. I know many people who say things like “I can’t fast, I get sick if I get hungry, or I get a headache, or I feel dizzy.” Yes, these things WILL happen if you fast, they will happen to EVERYONE. Even Jesus became hungry! It tells us so in the Bible (Matthew 4:2-4). This is one of the points of fasting. Depriving our body of what they need in order to full rely on God. Of course we couldn’t fast on our own free will. Fasting is something that can only truly be obtained through Christ. If the Lord calls you to fast, He will sustain you, give you the energy you need and the strength to follow in His will. However, when you do fast, it is vitally important to spend extra time in prayer, studying the Word, and intense time with God, cause otherwise, as Eric told us: “Fasting by itself is simply a diet. . .fasting and prayer unlocks the power of God in our lives.”
Do you want to unlock the mighty and awesome power of God in your life!? Fellow Christ-followers, I want to encourage you in this. My husband and I will be going alongside Journey Church in this challenge. We, at Journey Church, want breakthrough! We truly desire to reach the lost and disconnected for Christ! I will be letting my readers know how this week goes and what God is teaching me during this exercise. Please feel free to leave comments, OR questions if you have them, and I would be glad to do my best to answer them and to pray for you as you decide “when to fast. . .” GOD BLESS!