On Sunday, Pastor Jeremy Johnson began a new series, “As For Me and My House,” and encouraged us to serve the Lord wholeheartedly by realigning ourselves through prayer and fasting to begin the new year.
God desires us to fast and pray not to get His attention, but so that we can be realigned past the hurt and pain the world has caused us. We have treated our past as treasures on our mantle for too long. As said in Isaiah 61:4, it is time to rebuild, restore and renew what has been ruined in our lives. The enemy would love nothing more than for us to be free through Jesus, yet not actually be free. We must draw a line in the sand and retune ourselves to the blessings God desires us to live in.
Joshua 24:14-15 says, “Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. 15But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”
To fear the Lord is not to be afraid of Him. It is about giving reverence to Him above anything else. When you give reverence to Him above everything else, you won’t have to fear anything else. We have other options just as this scripture references, but if we want to live out the life of freedom as God has called us to and so freely gave to us through Jesus, we have to draw a line in the sand. We have to make a choice that we will serve the Lord, above everything else. It is in making that decision that the devastation in our lives can be rebuilt and we can begin to be restored and renewed. Prayer and fasting is a pathway to seeing that kind of breakthrough in our lives. As said before, fasting is not about swaying God to do something. It is about realigning ourselves with Him and His leadership. If we focus on the dos and don’ts of fasting, we are focusing on the wrong thing. As in anything the Lord asks us to do, the Lord’s desire is for us to get closer to Him. He wants to take us out of religion (do this, don’t do that) and bring us into relationship with Him. He emptied Heaven so that we could be in relationship with Him. So when you are fasting from something, spend the time you would use on what you are giving up to pray and hear about the amazing plans God has for you.
Draw the line in the sand today and ask the Lord what has been holding you back from pursuing Him wholeheartedly. As a church, we are beginning a fast on January 8, 2018 to realign ourselves for the new year. Look on our website for the details and ask the Lord if there is something He would like for you to give up for a period of time. You do not have to bring what happened in 2017 into 2018. Start fresh and begin walking in the freedom God has designed you for!