Living a Fasted Life In Times Like This
“Be ready for service and have your lamps lit. You must be like people waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet so that when he comes and knocks, they can open the door for him at once” (Luke 12:35-36).
To walk in the path of the Lord Jesus Christ, calls for our complete attention and obedience to Him and Him alone. It is a call to follow Him completely – to be ready at all times. A following that demands our complete attention and concentration or we lose sight of Him through unpreparedness. You do not follow someone successfully if you are the one dictating the route. The whole idea of following someone presupposes the fact that we do not know the way, but we know whom we are following: “Jesus told him, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me’” (John 14:6). When the rich young ruler thought he was well on his way to perfection since he had kept the commandments of the Lord from his youth, the Lord replied: “If you want to be perfect…go, sell your belongings and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow Me. When the young man heard that command, he went away grieving, because he had many possessions” (Matthew 19:21-22). To follow Him is not a journey of us receiving and being blessed alone or of self discovery, self-ownership, self-indulgence or acquisitions, but a journey of self-sacrifice and blind devotion to the Master: “When they looked up they saw no one except Him – Jesus alone” (Matthew 17:8). Except we walk in this manner we will be powerless against the onslaught of the enemy of our soul.
We are admonished to live a life of preparedness so as not to be lured away by the antics of this enemy. These battles he wages against us are not only to deprive us but to mostly entice us away from the righteous path of following the Lord Jesus Christ. So many succumbed to this and they turned away from the Only path of Life, to the present world; “For Demas has deserted me, because he loved this present world, and has gone to Thessalonica” (2Timothy 4:10). The reality is, as long as we are in this body living on this earth, we are in constant battle with the enemy of our soul: “For our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the world powers of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavens” (Ephesians 6:12). This is why we must live intentionally (a fasted life) fully kitted with the full armor of God at all times.
To show us how to live like this, the Bible tells us: “Summoning His 12 disciples, He gave them authority over unclean spirits, to drive them out and to heal every disease and sickness” (Matthew 10:1). However, a few chapters down the line, we saw the disciples unable to cast out a demon: “’Lord’, he said, ‘have mercy on my son, because he has seizures and suffers severely. He often falls into the fire and often into the water. I brought him to Your disciples, but they couldn’t heal him” (Matthew 17:15). Does this mean the authority they received was not true? It was true, but they did not have faith that it could be done. To have faith in God is to purposely seek Him out and believe Him no matter the conditions and situations around us: “Now without faith it is impossible to please God, for the one who draws near to Him must believe that He exists and rewards those who seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6). Jesus telling His disciples that this kind of demon does not come out except by prayer and fasting, points to the fact that we must live a lifestyle centered on prayer and fasting: A lifestyle that is solely depended on God through prayers and self-denial (A fasted life). Daniel, Paul and countless others lived in this manner and their lives were a great testament to the wonder working Power of God.
Beloved, what is your life a testament to? Is the testimony of your life based on the things you had acquired, and the knowledge of God you had received though your Pastors and mentors? Then you are not different from the rich young ruler. A life that thinks he is rich in God but in reality is poor, blind and wretched (Revelation 3:17): “But Ephraim says: ‘How rich I have become; I made it all myself. In all my earnings, no one can find any crime in me that I can be punished for!’” (Hosea 12:8). This is a terrible self-delusion and the end result is eternal damnation! Beloved, do not get deceived or entangled with the lusts of the eyes, flesh and with the pride of life, but humble yourself under the mighty Hand of God and allow Him to lead you. The truth is, without Him, we truly do not know the way and neither can we find it! Search Him out daily for yourself beloved, just like the Berean Christians. Let your knowledge and experience of Him not only be based on what you had been taught but on what you had seen and heard for yourself through the studying and meditating on His Word. That manner of experience is life changing and permanent: “What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have observed, and have touched with our hands, concerning the Word of life – that life was revealed, and we have seen it and we testify and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us” (1John 1:1-2). This was the conviction of the Disciples/Apostles and they were ready to go through and did go through, joyfully, the mocking, beatings and killings, because they knew Whom they have believed! May the Lord bless you by opening your eyes to see what He is saying. May your heart be strengthened in your knowledge of Him as you daily live a life of sacrifice (fasted life) to Him in times like this, in Jesus Christ name, Amen!