We believe God’s on the MOVE. This year in particular we are stepping out in faith like never before as we ask God to do the impossible. God is longing to do the impossible in YOUR life. Why not join together in setting aside the first of this year to God in prayer and fasting? As we make ourselves available — as we get serious and tell God we’re here for it — He can do more than we ever imagined. Here’s to 2021 being a year marked by the healing, favor and blessing of God.
“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us”
Ephesians 3:20 ESV
If you’re new to fasting or just need some fresh reminders, we’ve provided some basic info + tips.
WHAT is fasting?
Fasting can sound super-spiritual — even intimidating — yet fasting is something both BASIC and POWERFUL. It is simply setting aside some of our distractions and comforts to seek God and draw closer to Him in a more focused and meaningful way.
WHO should fast?
Anyone who follows Jesus! In fact, Jesus took it for granted that people who identified as His follower would do this on some sort of regular basis. In giving his own fasting instructions one time, Jesus started his “Fast Playbook” by saying, “WHEN you fast…” Notice he didn’t say IF — he said WHEN. (Matthew 6:16) He just assumed it would be part of the rhythms of our lives.
WHY should I fast?
Many, many reasons. Here’s three:
- Jesus did it! Jesus fasted and we want to be like Him. If, as the Son of God, Jesus needed to fast, how much more do we?
- Fasting gives a greater sensitivity to spiritual things. Many people notice that as they turn the volume down on some comforts of the flesh and soothing distractions and turn the volume up on worship and prayer, there is an increased sensitivity to God’s Presence and voice and will.
- There’s power in it! One time the disciples just couldn’t get the job done. No matter how much effort, it wasn’t enough. There was no breakthrough. Jesus’ response? “This kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting (Matthew 17:21).” Combining the fire and gasoline of prayer and fasting can sometimes bring breakthroughs to what has seemed immovable for years.
WHY fast NOW?
We believe order is powerful. How you begin your day affects your day. And how you begin your year can affect your year! We believe it’s powerful to give God “the first and the best” (what the Bible calls “first fruits”). Many churches and individuals from all around the world have seen untold blessings and even miracles by beginning the year with God – asking Him for vision and direction and seeking Him first. We win in life when we start with God.
WHAT should I fast FOR?
Whatever is on your heart! Get specific about your needs and desires. Even better, the greatest point of fasting is God Himself. Jesus gave an analogy in Luke Chapter 5 about how his followers (the Bride) would one day fast when Jesus (the Bridegroom) is temporarily taken away before His return. In other words, like two people in love, fasting is a kind of inner getting-away-with-God in which we draw closer to Him in friendship, spend more time in His Presence, and lean our ears toward Him to hear His voice a little clearer.
Regardless of what you pray for in your personal life, would you join us in praying over X CHURCH this year? Here are five things you can pray for your church in this season.
- Supernatural PROVISION for all God has called us to do.
- Increased FAVOR and ANOINTING for the assignment he Has given us to accomplish.
- SALVATIONS of hundreds of people that we’re asking Him to send our way.
- WISDOM and COURAGE for more people to take their next step in their spiritual growth.
- What YOUR PART is in what God wants to accomplish this year at the X.
Jesus said there’s power when we agree in prayer. (Matt. 18:19)
HOW should I fast?
There are many models of fasting you can follow from Scripture. One popular fast is the Daniel Fast — a temporary diet consisting of only water, fruits and vegetables. You can read the whole story of Daniel in the Bible and you can even buy Daniel Fast cookbooks at bookstores. Some people choose to do a bread-and-water fast. Some simply give up soft drinks or sweets. The point is laying something physical down to pick something spiritual up. And like King David from the Bible, we don’t “want to offer a sacrifice that costs nothing.” If you don’t like chocolate, chocolate is not the thing to fast! Choose something that will be a challenge!
Also, while fasting traditionally involves food, it can also involve setting aside something else that would usually take up your time and/or affect your spirit. Some people fast secular music, Netflix, sports, social media, etc. and replace that instead with more time to connect with God through reading Scripture, study, prayer or worship.
All that being said, while it’s important to be committed on a fast, the power isn’t in what we abstain from; it’s what we incline our hearts and attention towards. The heart of a fast — whether a private one or like this corporate church one — is Jesus. The point is not to get bogged down so much in the legalism of the fast that we don’t seek and enjoy Jesus! The point is not just to not eat. The point is to replace the flesh with the Spirit through more Scripture, more prayer, more journaling, more time with God. If we don’t eat and don’t spend time with Jesus, we just starve ourselves both physically and spiritually — and that’s no fun for anyone!
While fasting is a discipline, it was never meant to be a heavy, legalistic chain around our necks. On the contrary, if you’ve never fasted before, we hope you find it to become an exciting, life-giving, future-shaping new tool in your spiritual arsenal. You may never be the same! Let’s seek God together and watch Him move!
- Grab a 21-day “Pursuit” devotional from The Shop.
- Digital Guide – If you have the YouVersion Bible App on your phone, you can find several 21-day fasting devos to supplement your journey. One that we recommend is “Less of Me/More of Him” by Pastor Jentezen Franklin.
- Join us for moments of gathered prayer! We gather in room 168 every Sunday morning from 7:30 – 8:30 to spend time in prayer. During these 21 days specifically, we’ll also be meeting each Tuesday evening from 6:30 – 7:30 for a time to seek God together.
Let us pray with you and celebrate with you! E-mail us at email@example.com with any questions, prayer requests or praise reports as you watch God MOVE during these 21 days.