START THE YEAR OFF RIGHT AND DISCOVER THE REWARDS OF PUTTING GOD FIRST!
 
Join us as we begin 2019 by fasting for 21 days. Fasting in January is much like praying in the morning to establish the will of God for the entire day. When we put God first in our lives, in our families, in our finances – in everything – I believe that He will bless and multiply those areas. If we will pray and seek God and give Him our first and best at the beginning of the year, He will honor that sacrifice and bless our ENTIRE year!
 
Starts January 7th – January 27th.
 
 
WHAT IS FASTING?
Fasting is defined as denying oneself something that is common, normal, and necessary. It is abstaining from food or other things with a spiritual goal in mind. We empty ourselves in order to fill it with God’s presence and experience greater communion with Him. Throughout the Bible and in the early church we see prayer and fasting was a common practice. Scripture gives us examples of both corporate and individual fasting. Moses, David, Daniel and Jesus, all practiced individual prayer and fasting. We see corporate prayer and fasting at various times throughout the Old Testament by the Israelites, such as in 1 Samuel 7 and Nehemiah 9. We also see the early church practice prayer and fasting in the New Testament in Acts 13. Jesus spoke of prayer and fasting as an expected discipline of the Christian faith in Matthew 6.  
 
WHY DO WE PRAY AND FAST?
The primary reason we pray and fast is to draw near to God. Fasting tenderizes and sensitizes our hearts, driving us to focus solely on God and in return to hear what God is saying and pray the prayers that He is praying. He is a God that loves to answer prayer and He loves when we set aside time, push away distractions, and willingly posture ourselves to be before Him. We do not pray and fast to manipulate or earn God’s favor. Instead, prayer and fasting is an act of humility, an admission of desperate dependence on God (Ezra 8:21). In addition to drawing near to God, we can pray and fast for a variety of secondary reasons – to bring about both personal and corporate revival, for emotional and physical healing, for protection against the enemy, and for a greater release of God’s power and presence here on earth.
 
HOW DO WE FAST AND PRAY
There are different types of fasting and for varying lengths of time. In the Bible we see Daniel fasting from “choice foods” for 21 days (Daniel 10:3) and Moses went on what is considered a supernatural fast for 40 days, having no food or water (Deut 9:9). Fasting can take various forms. One can fast by abstaining from certain food such as sugar or caffeine. A common method of fasting is by abstaining from one meal, typically lunch, and instead spending that time in prayer. While fasting is typically related to food, you may choose to abstain from something such as media and technology, using no television, Internet or social media for a period of time. People pray and fast in a variety of ways.
 
PRE-FAST PREPARATION
  • Pray. Ask God for the grace and strength to successfully fast and pray.
  • Examine your heart and motives before God.
  • Plan your day ahead of time. Do your best to minimize any appointments and strenuous activities.
  • Be prepared to mentally fight temptations to eat and hunger pangs throughout the day
  • Get a good night’s rest.

DURING YOUR DAY OF PRAYER AND FASTING

  • Arrange time throughout the day to be in prayer. The best time to do this is usually during your regular meal times. Fasting is not just denying yourself food. It is exchanging the needs of the physical body for those of the spiritual. Instead of eating, spend time in prayer.
  • If you must be around people during meal times, politely say “I have other plans for lunch today.”
  • Whenever you face discouragement or temptation to eat, go immediately to God in prayer. Ask God to give you the strength and perseverance to press through difficulty.
  • Drink plenty of water. It’s best to avoid caffeine, sodas, and milk.

  DURING YOUR PRAYER TIMES

  • Find a quiet place, away from distractions.
  • Turn off your cell phone while you are in prayer.
  • Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide your prayer time
  • Follow the Prayer Guide, beginning with a time of Adoration
 
Remember, the primary purpose of prayer and fasting is to draw near to God. Stay focused on seeking God, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit with all of your heart. The more you align your thoughts, motives, and desires with His Word, the more powerful and effective your time of prayer and fasting will be. Enjoy your day of prayer and fasting; it is an act of worship!
 
Blessings,
Pastor Young