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Closer: Prayer and Fasting

By Pastora Monique Lopez Ong

The New Year celebration was such a blast! Aside from the fireworks going off all around, people were revving their motorcycles, turning up the volume of their speakers and blowing horns to add to the noise. While everyone was welcoming 2022 with so much noise, God is asking you to spend time with Him in silence. And when everything subsided, all the smoke and noise, God’s presence remained.

Revelations 22, the last chapter of the Bible, verse 17 says, “The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.” When you search for the Lord’s presence, He will make Himself so evident and so present in your life and He will reveal so many beautiful things in your life too. After all the fanfare and festivities during the holidays, the Lord is desiring to be closer to you.

“I want to come closer to you. I want you to spend more time with me. I want you to encounter me. I want you to have the abundance of me,” says the Lord. May your spiritual ears be opened and your relationship with God be strengthened during this time. Sunday services are not enough. Reading the Bible is not enough. God is giving you His presence no matter what you are going through. He is with you always. May you be able to say yes to God more and no to the things of this world. Many are playing tug-of-war with God. Seek God and surrender everything to God so that He can take care of all of your needs. Commit and recommit to God and be fully focused on Him. This world has so many distractions and temptations, especially when everything in your life is going as planned. You are easily swayed and forget to spend time with God. As you come to a time of prayer and fasting, it is your time to commit to the Lord that He comes first.

This spiritual discipline is so important. It is your weapon against the works of the enemy. There is power when you pray. And every time the enemy has a plan for your life, let the power of God reign. This is also a good time to pray for family members who do not know God yet. Spend time with Him and let Him be known.

Do you know the story behind prayer and fasting? When and where did it start? In Exodus 24, God invited Moses, Aaron, Nadab, Abihu and 70 elders to “come up the mountain.” Moses was the only one to go much higher to get instructions for the 10 Commandments and he spent 40 days and nights with the Lord. They described that they saw the feet of the Lord and it was glorious. In the 40 days and nights Moses spent with God, He gave him instructions on how to build the Tabernacle, the Ark of the Covenant and detailed instructions about the 10 Commandments. During this time, the people below were growing weary and were losing patience. So they called Aaron to make a golden calf. The Lord was not pleased and sent Moses back down.

He broke the tablet containing the 10 Commandments and so many people died. Moses was asking for God’s presence during all this time, saying that they will not leave the place until God makes His presence known.

This is where fasting actually begins. The Lord gave instructions to Moses. Exodus 34:1-3 says, “The Lord said to Moses, “Chisel out two stone tablets like the first ones, and I will write on them the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. Be ready in the morning, and then come up on Mount Sinai. Present yourself to me there on top of the mountain. No one is to come with you or be seen anywhere on the mountain; not even the flocks and herds may graze in front of the mountain.” The Lord wants 100% attention.

How do you prepare to have a beautiful and prayerful encounter with God during this time? There are many ways to fast.

  1. Partial fast - skip 1 or 2 meals

  2. Daniel fast - purely vegetables and water diet

  3. Liquid fast - taking water, juices and clear soup only

  4. Full fast - total abstinence of food and water for a short period of time

  5. Object fast - no gadgets, social media and things

This is the preparation. When you prepare our heart, you are setting your mind to receive instruction from the Lord. Jeremiah 31:33 says, “This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel after that time,” declares the Lord. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.

Soul and Spiritual Preparation

  1. Prepare your heart

  2. Set your mind

  3. Be ready to listen and receive instruction for the Lord

What should you do while you are fasting?

  1. Feast on God’s word - instead of eating, read the Bible. Watch His word come alive in your life.

  2. Journal your fasting experience - when God tells you something, write them down.

What should you look forward to during this time?

  1. Expect to meet with God - if you seek Him, you will find Him. Exodus 34:5-7 says, “Then the Lord came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the Lord. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.” When you choose to spend time with God, expect that he will meet you. He will introduce Himself to you in the way that you need Him to be. He will make you experience Him.

  2. Worship the Lord - when Moses felt the presence of the God, he immediately threw himself to the ground and worshipped (Exodus 34:8). You will not be able to stop yourself from worshipping because He is that amazing. Do not make this a ritual. Immerse yourself until you feel His presence. Pray, speak in tongue, sing songs, declare who He is and call onto Him.

  3. Be filled in His presence - In Exodus 34:28, “Moses was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Commandments.” Jesus is the Bread of Life and the water to those who are thirsty for Him. Every time you come into God’s presence, you become full. The more you are with Him, the hungrier and thirstier of Him you become. The more you seek Him, the more you find Him. In the first month of the year, dedicate your time to praying and fasting and saying no to everything else. Make God your priority. Bask in His presence and all your worries, fears, and sicknesses will be restored.

  4. Completely changed - Exodus 34:29-30 says, “When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the covenant law in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the Lord. When Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, his face was radiant, and they were afraid to come near him.” The presence of the Lord may emanate from you. So many great things may change in you after days of prayer and fasting. He will put His imprint wherever you go and people will see Him in you. And when this happens, so many people will want to receive Him too.

Come to God with no agenda but to simply get closer to Him. Fast. Pray. Worship. Hear Him. Allow Him to rule over your life.


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