Week of Prayer and Fasting
Church, the elders are inviting you all to join us in a week of prayer and fasting from April 2nd - April 8th. This is not a command, but rather a strong encouragement to join us.
There are many Scriptural examples for the following of this kind of focused spiritual discipline. In the Old Testament, God’s people fasted as a means of confessing and repenting of sin (Daniel 9:3-5), of mourning over their sin (Joel 2:15-16), as a way to seek protection and direction from the Lord (Ezra 8:21), and as a time to mourn over events in their land (2 Samuel 1:12).
In the New Testament, we see the church fasting as they were selecting elders and sending missionaries (Acts 13:2-3), as a normal act of devotion (Matthew 6:16-18), and as an act of worship while they await Jesus’ return (Matt 9:15).
We are calling for this time of prayer because we need God. God has called His people to seek His face (Psalm 27:8) and has given the promise of His presence for those who do (Jeremiah 29:13). Jesus assures us that when we fast and pray, the Father who sees in secret will reward us (Matthew 6:6, 6:18). And the great reward we long for is to know Him and love Him more.
To this end we are asking you to join us in a week of prayer and fasting. May God grant us to know more of Him and to love Him more.
Paul and Kelton recorded a conversation about this week of prayer and fasting for our Disciple SBC podcast, click here to listen to that!
We are asking people to set aside an hour each day during this week to pray. These times of prayer can be individual or with other brothers and sisters in Christ. To aid you in your times of prayer, we have supplied a daily prayer guide (see the picture above) that includes Scripture and related prayer focuses. Do not feel restricted to this prayer guide, but use it as much as it is helpful to you.
If you have specific areas of prayer you would like the elders to be lifting before the Lord, do not hesitate to email the elders directly, and we will pray for you.
On Wednesday April 5th, we will forgo our normal routine of family night and bible study, to spend some dedicated time during our bible study time (7-8pm) to pray with and for one another.
Fasting will look different for each of us during the week. Most will fast from food in some form or fashion. You may choose to fast from all the meals during the week, one meal a day, or a single meal. This is between you and the Lord.
If any of you have medical concerns, then please feel free to fast from something other than food, or please check with your doctor before making changes to your diet.
You may also choose to fast from things such as TV, sports, Social Media, or whatever else might normally consume your time.
The purpose of fasting is to deny yourself of something so that you can give focused attention to seeking the Lord in prayer and Scripture reading. Use the time you would normally be preparing or eating food to be praying / feasting on God’s Word.
As you get hungry, you can pray something like, “God, as my body hungers for food, make my soul hunger for You”, or “God, as I feel my need for food, make me more aware of my need for You.”
Here are some resources you might find helpful:
Introduction to Fasting from Desiring God
The Heart Behind Fasting from John Piper