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Some times it feels like a “Christian diet,” or maybe a way of getting God’s attention so He will  pay more attention to our prayers. Yes its that time again, time for what has become part of our pattern at New Life Christian Fellowship, time to start the New Year with a fast. Next Monday we will begin our 21day fast for 2012. Of course it’s not a weight loss program or an attention getting device neither is it something only for those who are especially spiritual. We do it to be obedient to the words of Jesus in Matthew 6. As part of His Sermon on the Mount Jesus speaks of “when we give” v2, “when we pray”v5 and “when we fast” v16 . But why does Jesus say this is so important?

I believe God gave us a clue on January 1 when we thought about the way Joshua challenged the people of Israel to choose who they would serve Joshua 24. That choice is every bit as important for us today as it was then. If we are going to serve Jesus it is imperative that we set aside time to listen to Him and our time of fasting is just that, to free up time to give God our undivided attention.

To help in this process we have prepared a booklet, which gives some practical suggestions about how to prepare. At the end of this blog there is a list of additional programs and materials that you could use. The prayer meeting in my office each Wednesday provides a great opportunity encourage and pray for each other. There will be additional times when folk can pray and be prayed for at 5:30-6:30am in the “cry room next to the sanctuary (enter by the outside office door) and at the Quartermaine’s home (1336 Crespi Drive) each evening (except Wednesday) 7:30-8:30pm. Whether you come for 5 minutes or the whole hour is not important , they are times to help us focus on the task in hand.

I cannot emphasise enough the NEED TO PLAN. If you do not make a clear and specific plan truthfully it probably will not happen! IT is also very important to share with anyone who will be effected by any changes you make in your schedule so that it does not come as a surprise.

“Not often, but every once in a while, God brings us to a major turning point—a great crossroads in our life. From that point we either go toward a more and more slow, lazy, and useless Christian life, or we become more and more on fire, giving our utmost for His highest—our best for His glory”. Oswald Chambers

It is my prayer that these three weeks will be one of those “major turning points” for each of us as individuals as well as our church fellowship.

Books and Additional Resources

“Fasting” and “The Fasting Edge” Jentzen Franklin

Awakening, 21 days to revolutionize your relationship with God” Stovall Weems

(A limited quantity of these books will be available at the Information Table for $10)

http://www.markbatterson.com/uncategorized/21-day-prayer-challenge/

http://www.awake21.org/

The You Version Bible app has a 21 day fasting reading plan: http://www.youversion.com/reading-plans/21-day-fast

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Posted January 12, 2012 by jolm15 in Uncategorized

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