I mentioned in one of my previous blogs that one of the concepts I have come across in recent years is thinking about fasting as “a date with God.” I like that analogy because it allows us to picture and understand fasting in a term that is practical and relational. A time of prayer and fasting is a designated time for you to spend time with God and for Him to spend time with you.
The second part of that process is powerful and significant: when we make time for God, He makes time for us. That is what makes prayer and fasting so significant.
Fasting is not just about diet and denial, but it’s also about desire, our desire for God. When we express desire for God, He always responds. James said, “When we draw near to God, He will draw near to us.” If fasting is just about diet and denial then it becomes self-focused and “works” oriented. Desire says, God my sacrifice is NOT about me, but about you. I desire you — to spend time with you, to talk to you, and to have you talk to me. This keeps God at the center of prayer and fasting.
The effect in our lives will be the same as it was in the life of the disciples as they spent time with Jesus. The people around them acknowledged it was obvious they had been with the Lord. See Acts 4:13. Long after the fast is over the residual effects of being in the presence of God will prevail.
Keep this fast simple: talk to God in prayer and worship, let Him to talk to you through His Word and by His Spirit.
If you are dreading this season of prayer and fasting you are in, it may be that you are not approaching it the best way. Time with God is not something to be dreaded, but something to be anticipated. We dread fasting when it’s about us; we anticipate fasting when it’s about God. That doesn’t mean we don’t get hungry, that doesn’t mean it’s not uncomfortable. It does mean: Lord, we love ________________ name your favorite food(s), but we love time with you more!
One of the reasons Satan fights so hard to keep us from praying while we are fasting is that he knows the benefits and results of this special time with God.
For the rest of the time think of iPray as a 21-day date with God!