Prayer With Fasting

I’m learning. I’m learning that ministry without prayer is futile. (Are you learning this too?) God answers prayers that are prayed, but prayers that are not prayed are not answered. We can do a lot of good things in service to God, the church, and the world at large, but without a backdrop of prayer, these good things accomplish very little, if anything, of genuine spiritual significance.

Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not (James 4:3).

I’m also learning something else. I’m learning that prayer with fasting makes a particular difference. God answers prayer. That is certain, and I’m learning this more clearly than ever before. And God answers challenging prayers when they are mixed with fasting. I can’t explain this, and I have a lot to learn. But when I fast and pray, God always intervenes in some distinct and particular way, one way or another. And His intervention tends to be noticeable and obvious. Are you learning this too?

Prayer with fasting makes a particular difference.

So He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting” (Mark 9:29).

A lot of books have been written about fasting and its relationship to prayer. To be honest, I can’t say that I’ve read many of them, and I’m certainly not prepared to write my own. All I can say for fasting is that the Bible encourages me to consider it and do it.

Fasting seems to be a serious kind of prayer. It seems to sharpen my spiritual focus, deepen my spiritual desire, increase my awareness of God, and enlarge my anticipation for Him to act. I can’t explain why these things are so, but they are so nonetheless – that’s certain.

Fasting seems to be a serious kind of prayer.

It seems rather simple. When I desire to draw near to God and for Him to intervene in a particular way, I should fast and pray – not just pray. And when I fast and pray, it seems that God does indeed intervene – in a noticeable manner, overcoming spiritual obstacles and winning spiritual battles that otherwise appear unbending. What unbending spiritual obstacles are you facing? Perhaps you should consider fasting and prayer. That’s what I’m learning.

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