I remember some years ago I decided strongly in my heart that I want spiritual powers, I was facing some challenges back then and I felt the devil was messing with my life a little too much so, somehow, I told myself I would be able to stop him if I could get some spiritual powers like some men of God I had around me.
There was this day I got angry at God for not granting my request despite my fasts and thirsting for it, yea, I had been speaking in tongues for some numbers of years, but to me, that was not enough, I wanted more. I wanted to tell demons to shut up and get out and poor me; I thought one must need a special spiritual power to do it.
‘My people perish because they lack knowledge’. They suffer too, I mean, the devil almost threw me out of the Christian race but thank God for holding me.
One day, in tears, I decided to give up all my responsibilities in my place of worship, how can I call myself a teacher of God’s words without powers? I had decided to give up quietly, have people do the important stuff while I remain at the background.
Then that night, I had a dream. I was somewhere when I saw a very popular man of God approaching, he was carrying a black polythene bag but I was hiding somewhere. He didn’t come to me or face me, but while I was trying to decide if I should go collect the bag he was carrying (as a good girl LOL), I heard him speak to me, but without opening his mouth.
He said ‘read your bible and pray’. I was wondering what he meant, but that was all I heard, maybe all I could remember that night. I woke up in the middle of the night and God spoke to my heart, (that is the answer you have been searching for).
I did not want to believe it, it was too simple. I mean, I wanted powers, you say I should read my bible and pray, who does that? But deep down in my heart, I knew the Lord had spoken and it was left to me to take heed or to not.
As days turned into weeks and weeks into months, I realized my mind was my problem and not lack of power. I also realized there was no time I was diligent in studying the scriptures and prayers that I had a ‘devil problem’.
Here is the point of my story and how it relates to the topic – Fast. So should a believer fast? Yes! But Why do you want to fast? To overcome satan? To steal all the enemies have stolen from you? To be successful in all your endeavours? If these are what you seek after, then no, don’t fast.
Jesus said, ‘your heavenly Father knows what you need’, so ask, if you ask and you don’t receive, then you either have a knowledge problem – you are asking amiss, or you have a faith problem – you need faith to receive.
If you’ve fasted because you needed something and you received it in the past, there is a possibility you will turn this to a doctrine or principle of some sort. But you see, it was not your fast that got you what you needed, it was your faith. The fast helped your faith; it made your faith stable to receive from God.
If you have not given yourself to prayers and study of the Word before, you may fast, pray and not receive, why? Because you had a very, I mean a very long way to go. It’s like training a student who has never participated in an inter-house sports competition for the Olympics in just 2 months. Such a person lacks knowledge of the track competition; also, the stamina to go through it is not there at all.
Jesus said ‘Abide in me and I in you’. When you abide, I mean, when you live a life of consecration through studying the scripture and praying always, how will you ask and not reactive? One, you will not ask amiss because your mind would have been renewed with the Word of God (Romans 12:1-2) and you will ask in faith because ‘faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word’.
The Problem is that a lot of people fast and pray so much at the beginning of the year then they scarcely pray the remaining months. It is a big problem if the only time you read your bible is when you are in church or when you needed to read some psalms over some bad dreams.
So when and why should you fast?
- To give yourself more to prayer (Especially WORSHIP) and study of the Word of God.
- To suppress the and discipline the flesh
- And more importantly, to long for Him. As John Piper, the Founder of DesiringGod.org said,” The heart of it (fasting) is longing. We are putting our stomach where our heart is to give added intensity and expressiveness to our ache for Jesus. We fast to express our longing or our ache for all the implications of Jesus’ power in the present moment that isn’t completely realized. We want to see people healed. We want to see people saved. We want to see marriages redeemed. We ache, and we long for this to happen; therefore, we ask Jesus to come by putting this exclamation point of longing at the end of our desires”.
Be sure you are not fasting to receive the things that have been made available for you as a SON, or you may fast ALL your life and still not know God.