Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. (Matthew 17:21)
When I blogged consistently, Wednesdays would be “Fasting and Prayer Wednesday”. Though I stopped blogging about it for a while, I still tried my best to fast every Wednesday. I have other days that I fast for other things for e.g., I fast one day for my husband and his ministry, I fast another day for God to open doors regarding a burden he has placed on my family’s heart, but I can’t seem to get away from my church’s general Wednesday fast. I guess its just so ingrained in me from childhood.
Since I’m testing my toes in the sea of blogging again, I want to encourage you to fast. The scripture referenced above is taken from a passage where “Jesus rebuked the devil” out of a concerned father’s son, and immediately “the child was cured from that very hour.” (Matthew 17:18) His disciples had tried before but to no avail, and Jesus was a little impatient with them, “and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you?” (Matthew 17:17)
Feeling discouraged, the disciples took Jesus to the side and asked, “Why could not we cast him out? And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed , ye shall say unto this mountain, remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Howbeit, this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.” (Matthew 17:19-21)
This was definitely a challenging situation, this need was urgent. The demons were throwing the young man often into the fire and often into the water. So the father needed help for his son and he needed it fast! His son’s life was in jeopardy!
Somehow it seems that the situations we face today are ALL so challenging, so urgent. Similar to a woman, who is about to be delivered of her baby. She is feeling contractions and they are coming fast, right on the heels of each other.
Our challenges are coming fast and forceful because of the time. The church is about to be delivered out of this world and the enemy is throwing his strongest blows. God has allowed it because we need to be built up in faith, we need to remove the dross that is buried deep in our hearts that even we are not aware of. Until a forceful situation arises in our lives and we respond like the drunk down the street. We are surprised because we think we are “perfect” but God is not surprised, he knows that our “heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked: who can know it.” (Jeremiah 17:9)
If we intend to survive, we have to take authority over these challenging situations and utterly destroy them, I mean cut its head off. But we will not be able to do that unless we are strong in faith. Unless we build up our faith muscles through prayer and fasting. Fasting doesn’t remove the situation; but it strengthens US, that we have faith to defeat it. Remember when God told Moses to go up and posses the land, the people were weak in faith – they didn’t trust God, so they said we can’t go up because there are giants in the land. But after forty years, Joshua said let us go up and because the people believed God, they went up and took the land. They had faith in God and God honored their faith!
When WE are strengthened through fasting and prayer – our spirit grows, our faith in God is secure, and our flesh is buffeted. Woe be to that demon that tries to mess with us or our family. We speak destruction upon the enemy’s devices in faith and God backs us up!
So I encourage you, pull out your fasting and dust it off. Let us strengthen the church, through fasting and prayer.