Zechariah 7:4-5 ERV; I received this message from the Lord All-Powerful: “Tell the priests and the other people in this country this: ‘For seventy years you fasted and showed your sadness in the fifth month and in the seventh month. But was that fasting really for me?”
Christians everywhere are taking the first week or month of the new year to fast and pray. Each person is fasting various things, from all food to media. Some have fasted breads and sweets, others are doing the ‘Daniel’ fast. Each person has their own reasons for fasting. Perhaps you need to hear from God about something specific you’re believing for. Perhaps you need wisdom in a decision that’s up and coming. Whatever your reason, you may be surprised to hear that fasting, according to the Lord is never about you, it’s about Him.
Isaiah 58:6 tells us, “This is the kind of fasting I have chosen: Loosen the chains of wickedness, untie the straps of the yoke, let the oppressed go free, and break every yoke.” When Jesus went into the wilderness to fast, it was to prepare for just this. That period of fasting was doing what the Father has chosen; set the captives free. During his time of fasting, he communed with the Father, getting his plan, meditating on the Word. He didn’t take all the scrolls from the temple, no. At a young age, every boy had to memorize the entire old testament. Some didn’t make it and were sent home to learn their fathers trade, but those who did became teachers. He had the Word of God hidden in his heart and that time in the wilderness was spent getting Gods plan.
What are you doing during your fast to get Gods plan for you. One pastor friend of mine from Nigeria said it so well; “Make sure you stay in the word and prayers during your fasting and prayers. If you don’t pray, you are just observing mere hunger strike.” Are you doing this for Him or for you? If it’s for you, go eat a meal and be satisfied. He doesn’t need your pity fasting, doing it just because others are doing it. He wants communion with you. Fasting allows us to put down our flesh and increase our spiritual sensitivity. It is primarily to tear down strongholds and release captives. Isn’t that what being a Christian is all about? Carrying on what Jesus started?
Father, I repent of fasting failures. I admit, I did this because I need to hear from you clearly on some very important decisions I need to make, but that’s not why you want me to fast. You are more concerned with others being set free and that’s where my prayers should be too. Father, I declare freedom to the captives, deliverance to those in bondage. I pray that Your Kingdom come and Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Allow me to be your voice in the earth. Allow me to be your hands to those in need. Allow me to continue what you started. I thank you that when you start a good work in me, you are faithful to complete it. It’s in Jesus’ Name I ask this. Amen