Friday, February 26, 2010

Fasting + Prayer & Lent

(Author: Elliot Grudem and Bruce Benedict "Why Bother With Lent?")

Fasting and Prayer
Fasting and prayer are two traditional focuses of Lent.
Fasting, joined with fervent prayer and reading of Scriptures, is a spiritual discipline of humbling ourselves in abstinence before God to turn away some tragedy, or for obtaining of some special blessing. Fasting is traditionally the act of willingly abstaining from some or all food, drink, or both, for a limited time. Some people give up a certain behavior or habits during the season.
We fast (not just during Lent) because Jesus told us to do so (Matt. 6:16, Mark 2:20). We fast because we continue to see the pattern of fasting practiced in the church (Acts 13, for example). We fast because it is one of the means God uses to break the power of sin in our lives, prepare us well for prayer, and humble us before him (for unlike God, we need food to live).

The act of self-denial can be a helpful tool in your Christian growth. There is nothing magic about it; however it can be a helpful reminder of your deep need for Jesus and the way that Jesus meets and satisfies your every need.

So as you pray, join the Psalmist in praying, “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!” (Ps. 139:23-24).
Very insightful look into fasting & prayer:)

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