The season of Lent has begun. For whatever reason, I hear the Lord pressing me with a sense of urgency to take seriously His call to come and steal away with Him to a quiet place.
My time in prayer with Jesus the morning of Ash Wednesday was some kind of sweet. It was peaceful. It felt like God’s hand was holding mine. My breathing slowed. My heartbeat was calm. My prayer was His. I could feel my heartbeat lining up with His.
Oh, how the Lord desires us to spend time with Him. Silence the noise in your life. Shut off the television. Turn down the music. Put the smart device down. Surrender to Jesus and commence to prayer and fasting. Fasting can bring you to a place of intimacy with Christ, while prayer is having an intimate conversation with God.
I am reminded of the prophetess Anna, the daughter of Phanuel. She was eighty-four and worshiped night and day fasting and praying. It was Anna who gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to everyone who was looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. (Luke 2:36-38)
36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. 38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.
When I think about Anna, I think of expectancy—expecting a revival that will calm the land. Yes, I see in a vision where 2 Chronicles 7:14 come to pass. “…pray and seek His face…” When I read the passage of Scripture about Anna, I see God’s children living out their authentic purpose that God has assigned to each of us. It is as if together we humbly bow and submit ourselves to God’s call.
Imagine if we would begin praying God’s will at the same time. Wow! This is where we would witness God’s beauty and holiness. We are in a season of fasting and prayer.
Throughout the bible, fasting is mentioned sixty-nine times. Esther fasted. Paul fasted. Daniel fasted. Anna fasted, as well as many others. In Isaiah 58, we see an entire chapter devoted to fasting. So, I said to myself, “Fasting is necessary coupled with praying God’s will.”
As I reflect on my time spent with God the morning of Ash Wednesday, I see God’s people praying at a deeper level. True intimacy. Life transformation. Experiencing an encounter with the Lord. I can envision women and men serving in missions, engaging in outreach, and participating in bible studies.
During this season of Lent, let us pray for those experiencing economic challenges, job loss, foreclosures, credit issues, marital struggles, insecurity, trauma and torment, those who have suffered rejection and pain, international government, children, deliverance, healing, and an end to severe and deadly diseases especially the flu and the Coronavirus. God’s word calls us to pray without ceasing. [1 Thessalonians 5:16-18]. God’s word also says, “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” [James 5:16] Will you join me in a time of fasting and prayer?
#AffiliateLinks to help with ongoing ministry to women and girls. Fasting by Jentezen Franklin: Amazon
Prayer books by Gail go to: https://gaildudley.com/shop