Encouragement During a Week of Prayer and Fasting

This week, Jan. 13-19, 2014, our church is joining with other Foursquare Churches across Canada for a week of Prayer and Fasting.

prayer and fasting

If you are joining us to pray and fast, I’m curious – what are you fasting this week? What miracles are you believing God for?

I’m not doing a total food fast this week, but rather a fast like Daniel did in Daniel 10 – a fast of ‘pleasant bread’ – no sweet treats this week (no chocolate, cookies, cakes, Boston Cream donuts – my favourites!). Also, I have made the decision to fast from Facebook as well. I like Facebook and spend a lot of time on it, so I’m taking the time I would normally be on Facebook and using that to seek the Lord in prayer and Bible reading instead.

This week, I’m reading through the Old Testament book of Isaiah. Today, I read chapters 11-19, and here are some of the verses that really stood out to me:

  • “There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, And a Branch shall grow out of his roots. 
  • The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him,
  • The Spirit of wisdom and understanding,
  • The Spirit of counsel and might,
  • The Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord. 
  • His delight is in the fear of the Lord, And He shall not judge by the sight of His eyes, Nor decide by the hearing of His ears.” (Isaiah 11:1-3).

One of the benefits of fasting is to be able to more clearly hear God’s voice (see Isaiah 58:6-12, especially verse 11). Do you want to learn to hear God’s voice more clearly? This coming Sunday morning, we’re going to talk about how we can know God’s will and be led by the Holy Spirit in our lives. God wants to lead and guide us daily, and give us wisdom and understanding for our lives!

As you’re fasting this week, I want to encourage you to spend time seeking God in prayer and Bible reading as well. Write down what things you’re believing God to do in your life – what kind of breakthrough do you need for yourself and your family? If you live in Beausejour or area, come and join us at the church on Wednesday from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm for a time of soaking prayer in God’s presence in the church sanctuary. Then come and celebrate this coming Sunday morning and share with us what God did in your life this week!

Please know that our church elders and prayer team are agreeing together with you in prayer, believing for you to experience an awakening, revival and supernatural breakthrough in your life and family this week.

FASTING INFORMATION:

(Taken from the Foursquare Canada Website).

In Matthew 6:16-18, Jesus said: 16 “When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.17But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

Andrew Murray wrote: “Prayer needs fasting for its full growth… Prayer is the one hand with which we grasp the invisible; fasting, the other, with which we let loose and cast away the visible. In nothing is man more closely connected with the world of sense than in his need of food, and his enjoyment of it. It was the fruit, good for food, with which man was tempted and fell in Paradise. It was with bread to be made of stones that Jesus, when hungered, was tempted in the wilderness, and in fasting that He triumphed.”

PREPARE YOUR HEART

The preparation of your heart and the knowledge of God’s purpose for this spiritual discipline are just as important as what you will be praying during this time of Prayer & Fasting. Your motive must be to glorify God and draw closer to Him. Bill Bright wrote “The very foundation of fasting & prayer is repentance. Unconfessed sin will hinder your prayers. Here are several things you can do to prepare your heart:

  • Begin your time of fasting and prayer with an expectant heart. Heb.11:6
  • Confess every sin that the Holy Spirit calls to your remembrance and accept God’s forgiveness. 1Jn 1:9
  • Seek forgiveness from all you have offended, and forgive all who have hurt you. Mk.11:25; Lk.11:4
  • Ask God to fill you with His Holy Spirit according to Eph. 5:18 and His promise in 1 Jn. 5:14-15
  • Meditate on the attributes of God, His love, sovereignty, power, wisdom, faithfulness, grace, compassion, and others. Ps. 48:9-10; 103:1-8, 11-13
  • Do not underestimate spiritual opposition. Satan sometimes intensifies the natural battle between body and spirit. Gal. 5:16-17

EXPECT RESULTS

If you sincerely humble yourself before the Lord, repent, pray, and seek God’s face; if you consistently meditate on His Word, you will experience a heightened awareness of His presence (John 14:21). The Lord will give you fresh, new spiritual insights. Your confidence and faith in God will be strengthened. You will feel mentally, spiritually, and physically refreshed. You will see answers to your prayers.”

REASONS FOR FASTING

The most important reason to fast is to draw nearer to God. Fasting will ignite your prayer life and lead you to a deeper, more intimate relationship with the Lord. Other reasons are:

  • Experiencing a desert time, feeling distant Luke 4:1-2
  • Responding to a message from God Jonah 3:5
  • Repenting Joel 2:12
  • Needing clarity, direction, revelation from God Daniel 9:3-4
  • Making important decisions Acts 13:2-3
  • Preparing for spiritual warfare, demonic battle Mark 9:29 KJV
  • To be humbled Psalm 35:13
  • To have God hear you 2 Samuel 12:16, 22
  • To loose bonds of wickedness, lift burdens, break bondages, set the oppressed free Isaiah 58:6
  • To minister to others Acts 13:3

Lots of love & prayers,

Pastor Chris Jordan

Note: To all of my Facebook friends: When I publish this post, it is automatically tweeted on Twitter and posted to my Facebook account. That’s why you can see it there, even though I’m not on Facebook this week!

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About Chris Jordan

Husband. Father. Author. Pastor. Guidance Counsellor. High School Teacher. Follower of Jesus. And I enjoy a good cup of coffee!
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One Response to Encouragement During a Week of Prayer and Fasting

  1. I am fasting this week, from all but a few blogs (the title of this post made it obvious it was one of those that was okay to open), Facebook, TV, and a few other electronic type things, and doing a similar style with food. In the process, I am reading Ezekiel.
    I am seeking guidance more than anything, but also seeking more of Him!
    Naturally, I am praying for all of you as you proceed!

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