Child Of God….

Pastor Steve TaylorFasting 2017

“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children
of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. 2 Beloved, now we
are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when
He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. 3 And everyone who has this
hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. –1 John 3:1-3 NKJV
God calls His people to fast as a sign of their longing and desire to come back into a close
relationship with Him. In the book of Joel, the Israelites had wandered far from God, and their
sinfulness had resulted in famine and pestilence in the land. Through the prophet Joel, God
called them to repentance, ordering them to declare a sacrificial fast, which along with mourning
and weeping, would show God the sincerity of their repentance. In return the prophet said that
perhaps God would “turn and have pity and leave behind a blessing” (v 14, NIV).
Fasting is not something we do to obtain forgiveness. Every wrong we have done and will do
was forgiven at the cross, and when we accept Christ, we get to celebrate the mercy and grace
given to us through our relationship with Him.
“8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners;
and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James 4:8 NKJV
Fasting is about drawing closer to God, surrendering at a deeper level and becoming
more like Jesus
As we walk with God, there are times that we feel far from Him or disconnected. Joel’s words
resonate with us, even if we live in a context of grace: “return to me with all your heart.” There
are times we realize that though we have chosen to follow Jesus, the flame of our love for Him
has grown cold.
Your time spent in prayer each day of the fast can result in a new richness, a rewarding
connection with the Father. No matter where you are on your journey with Jesus, you can
always take a step closer toward Him.
Bible Reading: Psalm 63
Prayer Focus: As we begin this time of prayer and fasting, let’s turn our hearts toward God.
Make a commitment to seek Him daily. Pray that your “hunger and thirst” (Matt 5:6) for God
Himself will be increased over the next twenty-one days.