Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Fasting -- Returning to a Foundational Discipline

Fast. What comes to your mind when you see that word? Some might think of it in terms of speed. Others will think of not eating. Our society is so fast-paced that we often times don't have time, or don't take time, to even think about taking time out of our schedule to seek God on a genuine fast. As Christians need to get back to the discipline of fasting. It is becoming a necessity if we want to be stripped of clutter that keeps us from hearing God's voice clearly. Sadly, many Christians have never even fasted one meal. Are we not willing to sacrifice even one meal to find the heart of God?

As I prepare for our women's conference coming up on January 31, God is stirring me to fast. The theme of the conference is Lighten Up! Going Deeper! What better way to get rid of junk that weighs us down and prepare to draw closer to God than to go on a fast? I'm not talking about merely skipping meals to show some kind of "super Christian" label. I'm talking about seeking God. In fact, this time God is leading me on a different type of fast. Rather than going on a certain type of fast, I am to seek Him each day for what to fast that day. It might be dessert or it might be the whole meal. It might even be the computer! This way the focus is not on the fast itself, but it is on merely seeking God and learning to hear His voice more clearly.

Isaiah 11:3-4 (talking about the Messiah) says, "...He shall not judge by the sight of His ears, nor decide by the hearing of His ears; but with Righteousness He shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth..." Jesus makes decisions with righteousness. Righteousness, right-standing before God, is extended to us. Prayerfully during this fasting time we will let go of some junk that has built up in our lives that keeps us from realizing that righteousness God offers to us. Then we will be able to make decisions with His direction--His righteousness.

Will you join with me on a fast? How many days? That's up to you and God. What will you fast? That, too, is up to you and God. I pray it will be a time that our focus will be on God and we will learn a new level of trusting God. Is. 26:3 says, "You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You." May His perfect peace be yours as you seek Him!

BTW, I found a great blog post about fasting at my friend Julie Ferwerda's website. If you click on the title of this post, you will be taken to it.

Also, if any of you ladies in the Atlanta area would like to come to the Lighten Up! Going Deeper! women's conference, go to my website to find out more information or to register.

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