We, as a church, are beginning the new year with prayer and a 21-day fast. Fasting in January is much like praying in the morning to establish the will of God for your entire day.
We believe that if we will pray and seek God, and give Him our first and best at the beginning of the year, He will honor that sacrifice and bless our ENTIRE year!
If you are one of those people who sense God has more for your life, take the first step and believe for more of Him. Start the year off right, and discover the rewards of putting God first! We look forward to what God will do in our lives and in our land as we seek Him together. Make fasting a priority and a “lifestyle”!
Sunday, Jan. 20 at 5:30p - OKC Campus, Main Auditorium
Kid’s Ministry, infant through 5th grade, will be having their own time of worship and prayer as well.
Monday thru Thursday, join us for prayer at either the OKC or Edmond Campus in the Main Auditorium from Noon-1:00p. If you can’t join us at the campus, we will be streaming on Church Online and Facebook Live.
Saturday Corporate Prayer at the OKC Campus only from 8a-9a in the VSM room; enter through the VKIDS lobby
There is Life… and there is living … are you ready to start really living out God’s plan for your life? Because there’s more to life…more to faith…more to you—God gives you the formula for success. It boils down to two words: God first. That’s where God began. Look at your Bible. What are the very first words written?
“In the beginning, God…” — Genesis 1:1
God first! That is the priority that should rule our lives.
“Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.” — Jesus speaking in Matthew 6:33
How do we seek Him first? Through fasting and prayer.
Fasting is a discipline that helps to shift our priorities. It puts Him first and allows us to hear His plan, receive His direction, and His blessings. If you want success in your life, in your marriage, in your work—putting God first is the key.
When God is our first priority, He can use us to help others. God hears the cry of the oppressed and the unsaved. The words of Isaiah 58:6-14 give us insight into how significantly God views the power of fasting.
Simply stated, Biblical fasting is refraining from food for a spiritual purpose.
Fasting doesn’t change God, but it changes you. Our reasons for fasting are for our own humility. It is to remind our minds, spirits, and bodies who and what we worship: God Himself. By denying ourselves for a time, we encourage our spirits to rely more on God. We become more receptive to His guidance and it helps us to remember the true source of our joy.
Most people would agree that food is a good thing. If you're unable to fast but chose to abstain from something else, such as a hobby or technology or entertainment, those can also be good things.
All good things come from God, but the human heart is inclined to worship God's gifts rather than God himself. Fasting helps our hearts look past these gifts and look to God, who blesses us despite ourselves.
Genuine, purposeful fasting is a powerful discipline that can play a part in literally transforming our lives.
“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.” — 1 TIMOTHY 2:1-2
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service.” — ROMANS 12:1
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” — MATTHEW 6:33
“[Is] not this the fast that I have chosen to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?” — ISAIAH 58:6
We want to encourage you to target your prayers during this fast. Specific areas we will be focusing on together are church leadership and staff, leadership in our nation, and finances. The Bible instructs us to continually pray for our leaders (1 Timothy 2:1-2). When we lift up our leaders, here in the United States and around the world, we can expect God’s peace in our lives and in our nation.
Another great promise, from the book of Isaiah, proclaims that the chosen fast will “undo the heavy burdens and let the oppressed go free.” We are living in tough economic times and we know that so many people are under a financial burden. As we come together to fast and pray, we believe that your burdens will be lifted and that financial blessings will be released into your life!
Fasting is the act of willingly abstaining from something that is important to you in order to direct your focus on God. It tells your body that God is in charge, and allows you to get away from distractions. It positions you to focus on God so that you can hear from Him. What you choose to fast will depend on you and what your work schedule and health allows. So before you begin, pray about it and ask God what He wants you to fast. Ask Him what is distracting your life and what is hindering you from giving your focus to Him.
Prayer and fasting does not change God, but fasting changes us. God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. God has never left you nor forsaken you, but what happens is this--when we fast, it changes our mental, emotional, and spiritual posture.
Drink only liquids (you establish the number of days).
Eat no meat, no sweets, and no bread. Drink water and juice. Eat fruits and vegetables.
A partial fast can be from 6:00am to 3:00pm, from sunup to sundown, or for the full 21-days. Give up at least one food item.
FOOD AND BEVERAGES
ENTERTAINMENT AND TECHNOLOGY
In preparation for this special time with God, examine your heart, and confess your sins. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal areas of weakness. Forgive all who have offended you and ask forgiveness from those you may have offended (Mark 11:25, Luke 11:4, 17:3-4).
There are many reasons to undertake a fast, but the bottom line is to align your heart directly with His. The immediate purpose for a fast can vary. So the first step for any kind of fast is to declare your immediate purpose. Why are you fasting?
The type of fasting you choose is up to you. You might need to consider your work schedule and what your health will allow. Fast as long as you’d like, but use wisdom and ask the Holy Spirit for guidance.
Although fasting is primarily a spiritual discipline, it begins in the physical realm. You should not fast without specific physical preparation. If you plan on fasting for several days, you will find it helpful to begin by eating smaller meals before you abstain altogether. Resist the urge to have a "last big feast" before the fast. Cutting down on your meals a few days before you begin the fast will signal your mind, stomach, and appetite that less food is acceptable.
When you fast your body detoxifies, eliminating toxins from your system. This can cause mild discomfort such as headaches and irritability during withdrawal from caffeine and sugars. And naturally, you will have hunger pains. Limit your activity and exercise moderately. Take time to rest. Fasting brings about miraculous results. You are following Jesus’ example when you fast. Spend time listening to praise and worship. Pray as often as you can throughout the day. Get away from the normal distractions as much as possible and keep your heart and mind set on seeking God’s face.
We encourage you to seek the Lord in prayer and let your decisions about your biblical fasting come from Him. Ask the Lord to show you areas to target during your time of fasting and prayer. We believe that, as we pray and seek God, and give Him our best at the first of the year, He will bless our ENTIRE year (Matthew 6:33) – remember to always keep HIM FIRST!
“When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men they are fasting. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen: and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward in you.” — Matthew 6:16-18 (NIV)