Scriptures: Isaiah 58:6-11, Matthew 17:14-21
Last week we studied seven purposes for fasting, this week we will look at two more and also look at six benefits to fasting.
A purpose for fasting is for a more righteous life, the Word says "thy righteousness shall go before thee." This is asking for God to light a fire under us, desiring right living and passion in our walk with Him. The final purpose for fasting is: fasting to protect us from the evil one. "The glory of the Lord will protect you from behind," the Word shows us that God covers, watches and protects us.
Now we will look at the benefits of fasting:
1) More time to focus on prayer- times of fasting reminds us how important prayer is in our relationship with God.
2) Fasting makes our heart more attentive to God- we have a greater awareness to His voice and direction.
3) Fasting demonstrates to God that we are serious- "most of us live to eat, few eat to live." By showing we choose to control that desire we show God we are serious about a relationship with Him.
4) Fasting makes us look at our prideful nature- it opens our eyes to how we really are.
5) Fasting helps us to receive God's will with grace- we become more open and accepting of His guidance in our lives.
6) Fasting is choice not a command- its something we choose to do because we have the desire, not because of any obligation. It shows that we can make good choices.
Fasting, alongside prayer, opens many doors for us spiritually, mentally and physically. In our time of fasting lets continue to seek God for this direction, and make these changes into lifelong attributes.