“When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men they are fasting. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:16-18
God has blessed me since the day I was born, but its a special kind of blessing I have received since December 29th of last year. These are blessings of being in His will, being in relationship with Him, and allowing God to move in your life as you step back. That day, I began my first fast, only intending to fast 6 days. God had me run into a booking on fasting by Jentezen Franklin, and as I read that I immediately extended my fast to 40 days. I wanted to end and begin my year honoring God by giving up something I struggled with. I gave up sweets and fried chicken, doing a modified Daniel fast, and some days a full Daniel fast. I wanted to receive God’s vision for my life for the year, and make a permanent change in my life and family tree. And I can truly say that God has done nothing short of that.
I received the vision only 28 days into my fast. It helped to solidify that I would never start another year without fasting. I would never end another month or begin another month without fasting and praying–and giving, giving Him those days in prayer, praise, and worship. It was God’s vision that I get a new car, and so I fasted 3 days before going to the dealership that God move major mountains for me to get a car. And sure enough…I had that car home that Saturday. It was officially my car on Monday by signing the dotted lines. God saved me over $4500 on a brand new car. And now, I started fasting this past Saturday, but beginning my fast for my needs on Sunday. ONLY 5 days into my two-week fast if I include Saturday, God answered everything I came in prayer to Him for–over and beyond my expectations. He even had my neighbor apologize to me for wronging me last year. I’m gonna keep going because I want to receive everything He has for me.
Fasting does three things: 1. It stretches your faith by expanding your vision. You don’t see what you want to see in the natural only, but God enlarges your sight by blessing you and revealing to you the secret things. In the scriptures above Jesus tells us that God honors what we do in secret!! 2. It draws you into deeper relationship with God and teaches you to rely on Him in expectation of your prayers. God had my good friend and soror Jasmin to text me Saturday before I went to work and so I sent her my email address. When I went on my lunch break and read her testimony…it reassured me of God’s faithfulness to our obedience and the grace that He gives us in between. 3. It forces you to witness His goodness! I don’t know any person that has been blessed in the midst of a fast who does not share it with someone. I’ve told every person I know about the blessings I have received from God, but more importantly, I am a living testimony in every area of my life. From my health and healing, relationships with family, friends, and loved ones, to finances, and everything you can think of, God has continued to make provision in excess of my expectations.
God is calling us to be a nation of people who honor Him in every area of our lives. Fasting helps us help God because we consecrate ourselves through going without to gain from Him. It helps us help God because we essentially step out of our own way and let Him get to work. I can’t wait to see what else He has in store for me. He has already opened up more ministry opportunities for me–I have a weekly bible study with my brother in Christ and *ministry partner* (calling things as though they were) that I have been greatly blessed by, and just having my own domain to make sure I reach many. Fasting pretty much pulls the string on the bucket to tip the waters over into your life like a flood. This is one thing I know that works, and if you don’t believe me, trust His word that tells us to test Him out! Try God and see that you won’t be greatly blessed when you fast!
“I will make them and the places around My hill a blessing. And I will cause showers to come down in their season; they will be showers of blessing. Ezekiel 34:26 NASB