Friday, January 11, 2013
In January, there are many Christians who are setting aside time to fast and pray. Some are doing Daniel fasts (fruits and vegetables for 21 days), some are fasting from any food for a set amount of time and some are doing some sort of self-defined fast, like abstaining from media or sweets or hot sauce. Whatever the fast is, or for however long, people are creating space in their lives for God to speak to them or intervene in some way.
Centerpointe Church takes the first full week to fast and pray. It always makes a difference in the spiritual temperature and atmosphere of the church. For me, I feel refreshed and re-invigorated. It gives me clearer vision and passion.
Fasting is also a time of humbling ourselves before God and asking him to cleanse us from sin. Like our physical bodies benefits from this time of detoxing, our spiritual life also needs a time of cleansing.
I have already recommended people to get the book Second Chronicles Seven Fourteen Journey. It is a 28 day journey in prayer that will help guide you in your days of fasting. Others are reading Mark Batterson's book Draw the Circle. This is a 40 day prayer challenge. Hey, anything Mark writes I highly recommend.
Here is another. My daughter got it for Christmas and I picked it up today. It is Craig Groeschel's Soul Detox, Clean Living in a Contaminated World. I have only read the first chapter, and I recommend it already.
"The Bible consistently reminds us to check our spiritual diet for toxins. Proverbs 25:26 says, 'Like a muddied spring or a polluted well are the righteous who give way to the wicked.' How muddy is your water right now? Is your well polluted by all the cultural toxins seeping in? Or does your spiritual well draw on Living Water as its pure, thirst-quenching source?" (pg 17)
During your time of creating space for God, allow Him to speak to you about the areas of your life that need correction. This is no laughing matter. As society intentionally pushes us toward dysfunction, let's go counter-cultural and draw near to God.