Are You Missing What It Takes To Resist Sin?
By: David Hopkins
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I don't care how much you go to church or read your bible sometimes no matter how hard you try to resist sinning you end up finding yourself giving in to it anyway.
I know first hand because this has happen to me on countless occasions. I've found myself getting frustrated and even questioning my own salvation.
One time I even tried to give up, of course, the Lord brought me back to repentance, but the point is I didn't know what was missing from my life that could help me stay on the right track for good.
Jesus said to His disciples.
Matthew 26:41 "Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak."
But sometimes deep in your heart you feel the need to do more than just pray. Perhaps because you feel that your prayers are falling on deaf ears. You try to put your finger on what's missing but just can't seem to understand what it is.
Well I'm here to tell you that missing element in your prayer life is fasting.
Yes, fasting in combination with prayer will help to bring about the true repentance and a humbleness of spirit that you need and seek.
By fasting, you are able to turn fully toward the Lord in your hour of great need.
Do you have times that make you feel the need to seek the face of the Lord in a stronger more, profound way? In your darkest hour do you even know what your greatest need is?
Fasting and praying brings the Lord's comfort and the prayers you pray while fasting get surprisingly faster answers.
There is absolutely no debate Jesus expects us to fast.
Matthew 6:16 "Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward."
When one is crying out to the Lord with all of their heart and soul, it can do no less than touch the heart of the very Lord we pray to because fasting is the truest form of prayer.
Which type of prayer do you think God desires to hear? The gut wrenching, deeply sobbing passionate type that comes from a real heart full of sincerity, or the off handed casual prayer?
The self denial of physical needs, for a period of spiritual fasting is the key to producing deep spiritual growth because a person can get in touch with their inner self when they sacrifice their bodies physical need for food.
Serious prayer requires deep concentrated effort on the part of an obedient servant and that's why when a person concentrates their thoughts on the Lord rather than on food God's will and desires become known to them in a supernatural, profound way.
A person desiring to use the gifts of God with more Holy Spirit power and authority should fast, pray and get as deeply into the Word of God as possible. Eat His Word instead of food. Spiritual Fasting can bring great joy and blessings to your life.
Acts 13:2-3 "While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them. So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off."
Fasting also enables a person to resist the devil. Sometimes temptations become overwhelming and the only way to fight them is to go into a Spiritual Fast with heavy prayer.
Especially if you tried regular praying and still find yourself giving in to temptation.
What is the right reason to fast? Fasting should always be for spiritual purposes. The early church fasted, worshipped and prayed. That is the key to fasting. It should be a voluntary, private, worshipful and prayerful time between you and our Heavenly Father.
What's a bad fast? When you fast for the wrong reason or the wrong attitude in your heart. Whatever you plan to do, the main thing is to keep your mind upon spiritual growth.
I've personally experienced the greatest spiritual growth in my life when I fasted.
My favorite fast is a 7am-3pm fast in which I pray and read my bible for one hour during my regular lunch time.
This fast has helped me to stay focused on God's word and keep His commandments and not give in to the temptations of the devil.
When I do this fast I usually go 40 days in honor of Jesus' fast in the wilderness.
Matthew 4:1-2 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.
It is interesting to note that The Heavenly Man (Christian Book of the Year for 2003) contains the account of how Brother Yun in China endured a total fast (i.e. no food, no water) for 75 days. This sounds impossible but surely, with God, all things are possible.