Book Reviews · Knowing Him

Why Should I Fast?

You know those moments when the Lord reveals something to you that is so awesome that it covers your arms with goosebumps, fills your eyes with tears and puts a lump of excitement in the base of your throat?!?

Yea, I had one of those moments recently…

The Lord has been pressing on me that I need to be fasting – something I really don’t enjoy doing and I can think of many reasons..excuses why I shouldn’t:

I’m a young mom and need my energy to keep up with my kids
I don’t like feeling hungry
There’s a potluck at church today
Not a good day cause I’m meeting so-and-so for lunch
I’ll do it tomorrow
I don’t like feeling hungry
I’m too busy
I need to go grocery shopping (you should never go grocery shopping when your hungry, right?)
I don’t like feeling hungry
Not a good day cause we are having guests for dinner
(insert any excuse that comes to mind here)

However, God is so good. He always manages to provide the encouragement I need to carry out what He’s nudging me to do.

I came across a book by Derek Prince entitled “Fasting” in my church library. In this Prince discusses why we, the church of Christ, should partake of this COMMAND (Matt. 6:17) to fast.

I’m not going to go into each reason he gives, I just want to highlight one.

Before Jesus began His earthly ministry He was baptized and went into the wilderness to be tempted.

Luke 4:1 says:

“Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led around by the Spirit in the wilderness

When Jesus came out of the wilderness in Luke 4:14, it says:

And Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about Him spread through all the surrounding district.

***I looked up a couple of these words in their original language.***

This word ‘full’ in it’s original language means to fill, to be fulfilled, to be filled; replete, or covered over; by analogy complete:- full

This word ‘power’ it it’s original language means force (literally or figuratively); specifically miraculous power (usually by implication a miracle itself): – ability, abundance, meaning, might (-ily, -y, -y deed), (worker of) miracles, power, strength, violence, mighty.

What I gather from this…

it’s one thing to be filled with the Spirit – it’s another to be filled with His power.

So what happened in the wilderness that transferred Jesus from Spirit filling to Spirit empowering?

If we read Luke chapter 4, we see that He spent 40 days in the wilderness…

..fasting!!

Fasting that led to victory!!

“Through His fasting, He emerged victorious from that first conflict with Satan. This illustration would seem to indicate that fasting is essential in our lives if we are to be victorious over Satan. If Jesus had to practice fasting for victory, I do not see how any of us can claim to achieve victory without the same practice.” – Derek Prince

 

A pastor of mine explained something in one of his sermons many years ago that I will never forget:

A person is made up of three different sections:

The Spirit: that which is eternal
The Soul: the mind, will and emotions
The Flesh: temporal earthly dwelling

But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. (Galatians 5:16-17)

We have been given the Holy Spirit but we must walk in it! We must allow the Holy Spirit to reign over our soul (mind, will, emotions), leaving our flesh surrendered to Him.

“If we are to come into submission to the Holy Spirit, and if the Holy Spirit is to operate through us with freedom, then the carnal nature must be brought into subjection to the Holy Spirit.” – Derek Prince

“When you fast, you serve notice on your body and your carnel nature: “You don’t control me. I’m not subject to you. You’re my servant. You’ll obey what the Spirit of God in me declares I have to do.” – Derek Prince

Fasting is a way we humble ourselves before the Lord and put to death our flesh so that the Holy Spirit may have the power to freely carry out God’s purposes in and through us.

This knowledge has brought MUCH encouragement but also accountability. Now that I understand the importance and power of fasting, I can not deny practicing it.

 

6 thoughts on “Why Should I Fast?

  1. I really needed to read this post. I have been feeling led to fast but like you, keep making excuses. My pastor even taught on it several months ago and even discussed the importance of Jesus needing to fast…yet i have still made excuses. No more excuses tho…I am going to start fasting

  2. Even hearing the word makes my stomach begin to growl. 🙂 Great post though Megan and a good reminder for myself. You really have challenged me to take a day to fast this week!

    1. I know..I did it this past week and got to a point that I almost gave in. But I managed to push through; so glad I did. There’s definitely a blessing when we deny our flesh for the sake of drawing near to Him.

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