11 February 2010

21 Day Fast for 2010 – Part 1

Like I always say, there’s nothing more powerful than prayer and fasting! It causes you to focus on what really matters, it makes you disciplined and fasting allows you more opportunity to truly gain wisdom and answers to your prayers you’ve been struggling with for so long. The lessons I learned and the answers to prayer were really unexplainable and completely supernatural! If you’ve never prayed AND fasted, you really have NO idea the level of intimacy with God you can truly have!

In January, I completed a 21 day corporate church-led fast. Since this was less time than my original 40 day fast, I decided to make this one water-only. Well, to be perfectly honest it was only 18 days of water-only. On the 18th day mark I started drinking V8’s. Then the days following the V8, I had a potato and added a salad. Since this was a corporate church-led fast, the others who were fasting decided that we all wanted to go eat Carrabas for what I call our “First Supper”. Honestly, I struggled a little with the decision because I wanted pancakes badly! However, hardly anyone showed up for my first meal on my 40 day fast, so I certainly didn’t want to be alone this time. So, Carrabas it was!

I had my personal reasons to not complete my water-only 21 day fast. If I wanted to really enjoy my fine Italian meal, I had to be sure I built my digestive system back up to be able to eat more food on the final day. I also didn’t want to watch everyone else munch on pizza or chicken alfredo while I was stuck with a single lonely potato. ~:-( This is why I started including safe, fasting recovery foods towards the end. Small potatoes with only butter are perfect for breaking your fast slowly and safely (doctor’s orders…thanks Julie!). However, there was another reason I decided to slack off. I noticed towards the end of my fast that I might be too prideful about completing the whole water-only deal. I don’t know anyone else that’s ever fasted with water-only for so long. I finally came to the conclusion that it’s not about the numbers or the “works.” I didn’t want to become all puffed up with arrogance or have the slightest chance of it happening. So, I made sure I didn’t by cutting it off early (but keeping it in bounds according to a Daniel-type fast).

Ok, enough about the minor details. Let’s now dig into what really matters…answers to prayer!

I made a list of 5 major things I was praying for (in a nutshell):
1) God would take me to that next level x2
2) God would send me a good wife
3) I’d have more faith and trust in Him
4) He would save and bless my family
5) Any friends that God would lay on my heart to pray for

Please understand that this is the short no-details list. If I’ve learned anything about prayer it’s that God wants us to pray very specifically. And, I did just that. I would pray for every detail that I felt was important. Sometimes the Holy Spirit would lay on my heart one thing one day, but something else the next. I also discovered that God wanted me to pray “Big.” That was the theme for this fast for me. I just knew I needed to pray “Big” and specifically. I began to see how God wanted me to pray and learned that it’s ok to be myself.

You all know how goofy and weird I can be about anything. I blame that on the creative juices God’s blessed me with. ~:-D Well, I finally realized that it’s ok to talk to God in my own special way. You don’t understand the revelation I had when I finally woke up and realized that God made me this way for a reason! And, He wants me to be real with Him and talk to Him like I would anyone else. I didn’t have to be some superstar prayer warrior that prays hours a day on his knees, crying passionately and quoting scripture every 5 seconds. We all have an image of that prayer guru in our lives that’s over the top and goes way beyond the norm. That’s great for that guy, but it’s not necessarily the way He wants me to respond to Him. Don’t get me wrong, I found myself praying more than I ever have (even compared to my 40 day fast). I realized that just thinking about how awesome He is and how much He’s done in my life is prayer. Man, the freedom that comes from just being you is amazing! Nobody sensible uses “How Great Thou Art” language in their everyday life, so why bother!

To be continued…

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