Friday, September 11, 2020

Please Fast and Pray with Me

 "If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."  2 Chronicles 7:14

Today, our hearts are saddened, as we recall what happened 19 years ago and we remember the fallen.  I remember where I was that day and what I was doing.  Do you?  Chances are, you do.  I will never forget the shock and fear, nor will I forget the aftermath and how sobered hearts turned to God and filled church pews.  It didn't take long for that to change, did it?

Today, 19 years later, never before, in our lifetime, have we seen such a need for repentance and revival, not only in our nation, but in our world.  My heart stays heavy over the spiritual decline and moral downward spiral we are witnessing with our very eyes.  

"All our enemies have opened their mouths against us.  Fear and a snare is come upon us, desolation and destruction.  Mine eye runneth down with rivers of water for the destruction of the daughter of my people.  Mine eye trickleth down, and ceaseth not, without any intermission, till the LORD look down, and behold from heaven."  Lamentations 3:46-50

Kevin and Zach have taken to calling me "Cheremiah."  I so relate to Jeremiah's burden for his people.  I love America.  I cry when I see images of our precious, blood-preserved flag burned in the street, our American statues pulled to the ground, and our President mocked and publicly disgraced.  I cry when I think of the founding fathers and how, even the "unbelieving" among them, chose to unite and found our great nation on Judeo-Christian, Biblical values and tenets.  I cry when I see images of the unthinkable ~ God's written Word being burned on American soil.  

"How did we get here?" we ask ourselves continually.  It isn't rocket science.  For a full explanation, please read my last post.

I don't believe a presidential election has ever been more important than the one we currently face.  Regardless of who wins, GOD is our only hope, but the constant cry of my heart is that He will have mercy on us one more time and allow the candidate win who is most supportive of life and our Christian values.  

"I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; for kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty."  I Timothy 2:1-2

As you may have read here or on our other blog, I began a season of intermittent fasting on July 25th.  I began this practice to rein in my flesh and lose excess physical weight.  What I didn't factor in is this daily time of fasting for 16 hours has drawn me in to that sacred, coveted, heightened sense of God's presence that I have experienced through the years while fasting.  It happens every, single day, as I enter into that daily 16-hour span.  I am eternally grateful for this precious communion and intensified fellowship with Jesus each day, and oh, my, it is so much more beneficial than the physical food I am "sacrificing!"

"The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much."  James 5:16

Adding fasting to our already fervent, effectual prayers brings an accelerated element of intensity that will absolutely arrest the attention of Almighty God.

Concerning a particularly powerful satanic stronghold, Jesus said, "Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting."  Matthew 17:21

All through the Bible, God's people entered into a time of fasting when they were faced with extreme threat and difficulty and when they needed fresh revelation, guidance, and help from God.

Ezra's Fast

"Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river of Ahava, that we might afflict ourselves before our God, to seek of Him a right way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance.  For I was ashamed to require of the king a band of soldiers and horsemen to help us against the enemy in the way: because we had spoken unto the king, saying, The hand of our God is upon all them for good that seek Him; but His power and His wrath is against all them that forsake Him.  So we fasted and besought our God for this: and He was intreated of us."  Ezra 8:21-23

Esther's Fast

"Then Esther bade them return Mordecai this answer, Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish."  Esther 4:15-16

Jehoshaphat's Fast

"And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.  And Judah gathered themselves together, to ask help of the LORD: even out of all the cities of Judah they came to seek the LORD.  And Jehoshaphat stood in the congregation of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the LORD, before the new court, And said, O LORD God of our fathers, art not thou God in heaven? and rulest not thou over all the kingdoms of the heathen? and in thine hand is there not power and might, so that none is able to withstand thee?  Art not thou our God, who didst drive out the inhabitants of this land before thy people Israel, and gavest it to the seed of Abraham thy friend for ever?  And they dwelt therein, and have built thee a sanctuary therein for thy name, saying, If, when evil cometh upon us, as the sword, judgment, or pestilence, or famine, we stand before this house, and in thy presence, (for thy name is in this house,) and cry unto thee in our affliction, then thou wilt hear and help."  2 Chronicles 20:3-9

Daniel's Fast

"In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed unto Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar; and the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision.  In those days I Daniel was mourning three full weeks. I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled."  Daniel 10:1-3 

Early Church Leaders' Fast

"There were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away."  Acts 13:1-3

When God's people humble themselves, pray, seek His face, turn from their wicked ways, and fast, His heart is moved.  He hears, and He answers, as He did in all of the above examples and many others.  He is a faithful God, and He will do the same for us as He did for His other children down through the years.  

I am asking all who read this to please join me in a time of intercessory prayer and fasting for our nation.  I will, by God's grace, continue the intermittent fasting, and I encourage you to seek God's will about how or what He would have you to give up during this time of earnest prayer.  I am not a doctor, nor am I suggesting anyone go without food if they have a medical condition that inhibits fasting.  But, if you are physically able, and you feel called by God into this time of special sacrifice and prayer, please, please consider joining in.  

Through the years, God has called me into many different types of fasts.  Sometimes, He has led me to fast for up to 10 days with no food, only a liquid concoction.  Other times, He has called me to a juice-only fast.  In January of this year, I joined in with our church for a 21-day Daniel fast.  Sometimes, He has led me to give up just one meal during the day.  One time, my dear Dad was critically ill, and I was so burdened for him.  I was at work, and someone had brought in donuts.  I started to pick up a donut, and the precious Holy Spirit whispered, "Would you be willing to give up eating that donut to see your Dad healed?"  Can I just tell you how quickly I put that donut down?  God healed Dad and added time to his life.

My point is this - only you and the Lord know what your personal sacrifice of fasting should look like, and only He and you know how much your physical body can withstand.  The main point is to humble yourself low before Him in a state of repentance for your own sins and for the sins of our nation, to plead for His mercy in the upcoming election, and to lay aside food as much as you are able.  As you can see in the above examples, there were different time frames and manners of fasting implemented - 21 days, three days, unspecified duration, etc.

This is my plea today, and I trust with all my heart you will prayerfully consider it.  SO much is at stake, and if God doesn't have mercy on us, we are without hope.

A friend of ours sent this to me, and I felt led to include it here.  I am eternally grateful for the ways God's people are coming together during this critical time!


May the Lord draw our hearts in to a place of intense worship and repentance before Him.  In 52 days, the Presidential election will take place.  Please, please pray with me, dear friends, and please vote.  May God bless each one of you.
  

22 comments:

  1. QUERIDA CHERYL: HOY ES UN DIA MUY TRISTE, NO SOLO EN TU PAIS, SINO TAMBIEN EN EL MIO, ¿SABIAS QUE EN EL ATENTADO A LAS TORRES, MURIERON 5 ARGENTINOS? 5 PERSONAS, QUE DEJARON FAMILIAS, HIJOS, PADRES, MADRES, AMISTADES, TENIAN CARRERAS, ALGUNOS SERVIAN L LAS PERSONAS, UNA VIDA DESTRUIDA TEMPRANAMENTE, ¿QUE TRISTE NO TODO ESTO? VEO LA MALDAD SIEMPRE, EN TODOS LOS NIVELES, NADA HA CAMBIADO DESDE ENTONCES, SIGUE HABIENDO MUERTES EN MI PAIS Y EN EL TUYO, SIGUE HABIENDO ODIO RACIAL EN TODOS LADOS, LA MALDAD VA EN AUMENTO, LO DICE EL APOSTOL PABLO, Y LO ESTAMOS VIVIENDO DIA A DIA. TE ENVIO UN GRAN ABRAZO A LA DISTANCIA, SOLO NOS RESTA ORAR PARA QUE DIOS HAGA LO QUE TIENE QUE HACER. AMOR EN CRISTO JESUS.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Seguro que lo entiendo, dulce hermana. Seguramente la venida del Señor se acerca, y tenemos que mantener nuestros ojos en Jesús. Él es nuestra única paz. Les envío mucho amor y abrazos a través de las millas y les agradezco por mantenerse firmes en la verdad.

      Delete
  2. I sure remember where I was. I remember my father-in-law telling me a plan had hit the World Trade Center and we thought it was a terrible accident until the next play hit. I remember I was still nursing my youngest daughter and my oldest daughters were at preschool and Christian school and all I wanted to do is go get them. I thought Jesus would return that day. I can't fast from food but I can fast from Instagram and definitely pray. Oh how our has gone off the deep end. Thanks dear for this post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw, bless your heart, I can only imagine how scary it was that day to be apart from your children. Thank you for being willing to fast from Instagram. Great, great idea. May God bless our efforts and hear and answer our earnest prayers. I am so burdened. Much love and gratitude to you, sweet friend.

      Delete
  3. Hi Cheryl, It was so interesting to see all the different Biblical accounts of fasting and the reasons behind those fasts - all powerful examples of how God is moved when His people fast and pray.

    Thank you for encouraging God's people to fast and pray for His name's sake for a nation that has turned their backs on God. There is soo much power when Believer's unite in prayer and fasting.

    Sending you much love and gratitude,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it truly is so interesting to read of the different fasting scenarios in the Bible. God was so faithful to do His part, when His people did theirs. Sending much love and gratitude to you and trusting all is well with you, sweet friend.

      Delete
  4. Cheryl, I am praying like never before for this election and for our country. We are definitely at a crossroads, and our future as a Christian nation teeters on the brink. Yes, may God's mercy shine on us and heal this broken land.
    Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, thank you, thank you for your faithful prayers and the burden you carry for our nation, my friend. "A Christian nation that teeters on the brink" - very accurate description. SO, so concerning. May God bless and help us all.

      Delete
  5. Oh Cheryl. How my spirit too has been burdened by the unrepentence, sin and hatred that is roiling within this great land of ours. I pray daily and I have been fasting two days a week, Mondays and Wednesdays both to lose weight and to pray for our nation. I'm going to join you in a daily fast of 18 hours a day. I will fast from 6:00 pm until noon the next day. I appreciate you asking us to do this and also giving all of the Bible passages regarding fasting. I plan to mark them in my Bible and read them daily.
    Wishing you peace in your heart my dear friend. God loves us with an everlasting love and our hope is ultimately in Him as you well know, not on the men of this land. Oh what a day it will be when we see Him face to face. I find myself envious of Karen, my SIL who passed from this earth last week. She is now with Jesus where she has longed to be for quite some time as the cancer destroyed her earthly body.

    Many Blessings and much love,
    Betsy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear, dear Betsy! How your words touched my heart! Thank you so much for fasting along with me and being willing to make this sacrifice for the sake of our land and all these burdens. May God hear and answer us and send the answers we seek from Him during this awful, turbulent season. I am so thanful for you and your dedication to stand up for the truth. Much love and blessings to you, too, my dear friend.

      Delete
  6. Thank you for writing such a heartfelt post, my friend. Oh my, the things going on in our country right now are so shocking. The disrespect and persecution that is given to our President is unbelievable. I started a 54 day prayer leading up to Election Day. I will try my best to do some fasting. God bless you on this journey. In Jesus’ name we TRUST.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, dear friend! You are so right. I have never seen a President so abused and disrespected. I am SO grateful to hear that you are fasting and praying so hard. You are such a dear, faithful child of God, and I am so thankful for you. Yes, in Jesus' name we trust - HE is our only hope. Much love to you.

      Delete
  7. Thank you for all the fasting references! I respect your call to fasting especially intermittent fasting which leads me to fill those hours with more of Jesus and less distraction as you say. Especially at this time!!!! God needs every one of us to pick up our spiritual weapons and fight for America and our freedoms. Shoulder to shoulder, arm in arm, sister...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES, dear friend, pick up our spiritual weapons and fight for America and our freedoms, we must. There is certainly a call to our Christian duty going out, and the burden rests continually upon my heart. SO thankful to fight shoulder to shoulder, arm in arm with you!

      Delete
  8. It has eaten four comments now. PRAYING sis as able

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am not sure what you mean about eating four comments, but I apologize for any trouble or inconvenience. Thank you ever so much for praying!

      Delete
  9. Cheryl, thank you for this most timely post. I am praying daily for our country...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So thankful you are praying, sweet friend. Oh, how we need to battle for the soul of our nation! God, help us all.

      Delete
  10. Dear Cheryl,
    Thank you for this call to prayer. I have been so burdened and praying for hearts in our land and in our world also. I wept as I watched Revival services and water baptisms on the streets of Chicago just last night. OH that hearts all across this land would hear HIM calling out to return to Him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES! I loved the link you shared on your blog. I recently heard about Sean and the work he is doing and have been so encouraged to know that there are great numbers coming out in the streets worshipping our precious Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Oh, He is SO worthy of our worship, even in these trying times. God, help us all. Thank you for your support and encouragement to me.

      Delete
  11. We are certainly living in a time He could shout or a time when our faith is going to be tested more then ever.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So, so true, Betty. May we all stand firm and keep our eyes on the Captain of our salvation.

      Delete