The Power of Fasting
I've got to tell you, I am so spiritually dissatisfied right now! The more I press in, yield myself to the Lord, and feel His presence, the hungrier I get for the Shekinah Glory of God! There's always so much more of Him than we could imagine or experience. He's infinitely greater than our limited understanding can comprehend.
If this is how you are currently feeling, I encourage you to spend time praying and fasting. There are so many benefits to fasting. It shows God we are serious about what we are praying for and it moves His heart on our behalf.
In 1 Kings 21 it tells the story of King Ahab, whose wife, Jezebel, had a man killed so Ahab could get possession of his Vineyard. God sent Elijah to let him know He was about to destroy them for the evil they had committed. As Ahab humbled himself before God, repented and began fasting and praying, God's heart changed and He saved their lives. That is one of so many stories of God's heart being moved by the humble act of fasting.
In Matthew 17 the disciples tried to heal the sick, but had no power over the spirits that held their subjects captive. In this case Jesus told them they had little faith and the only way they would have power over these spirits and see the sick healed was by prayer and fasting. What does faith have to do with fasting? It crucifies our flesh, draws us closer to God and pushes back our weaknesses. It allows us to focus on Jesus instead of the many doubts and reasons we think He would never move on our behalf. We become able to see past ourselves and the blockages of the flesh and behold His love, beauty, power, and strength.
I can't begin to tell you how incredibly awesome and tangible His presence is during a fast, but I haven't scratched the surface. As the desires of the flesh are ignored, my soul cries out for JESUS and the touch of His Holy Spirit!
Salvation is free, but there's a price to pay for His Glory...less of me and more of HIM!! I want to be like Smith Wigglesworth who lived in the early 1900's. He spent so much time fasting, praying, and in the Word, that anyone that got near him would feel the power and presence of God, fall to their knees and say you convict me of sin! Think about Peter, the glory of God so permeated His life that His very shadow would heal the sick! I don’t know about you, but I’m not there yet!
There's a world He desires to heal, save, and touch and He wants to do it through us, let's pay the price to see that happen!
Acts 5:15-16 (NKJV) As a result of the apostles’ work, sick people were brought out into the streets on beds and mats so that Peter’s shadow might fall across some of them as he went by. Crowds came from the villages around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those possessed by evil spirits, and they were all healed.
Joel 2:12,15,18 (NKJV) “Now, therefore,” says the Lord, “Turn to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.” Blow the trumpet in Zion, consecrate a fast, call a sacred assembly; Then the Lord will be zealous for His land, and pity His people.
Mark 16:17-18 (NKJV) And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
Galatians 5:22-24 (NKJV) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
Matthew 17:15-21 (NLT) “Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water. So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him.” Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me.” And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour. Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”