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Choosing to Fast

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“I’m Proud of You, Son”

My friend Anthony Pelella is a pastor of a church on Long Island, NY. He is a body builder and has worked to maintain his health even through cancer. He says that as a kid he enjoyed it when his friends and kids from the neighborhood would stop at his house to watch his father and his father’s friends lift weights. His father would flex for the kids to their delight. Anthony would feel pride in his father’s strength.
Anthony’s father taught him to lift weights. Eventually Anthony competed as a bodybuilder. Although he didn’t place at the top, he received his greatest reward. His father called him after the competition and told him of how proud he was of Anthony’s hard work.
Have you ever thought about it? Our Heavenly Father is awesome in power and might. He has provided us with powerful tools to become more like his son and be about the work of the Gospel. Have we become strong? If so, what a wonderful thought to realize that He is proud of us! Have we neglected the hard work of spiritual maturity? How does that make Him feel?
Over the past several weeks we have discussed the discipline of prayer, study of the Word of God, and today I’d like to discuss fasting. I believe that as we begin to exercise these disciplines in our lives, we will become stronger, develop a closer relationship with the Lord, and become a more powerful witness.

Transition (God):

We have as much of God as we actually want.”–A. W. Tozer
Why should I fast?
Are you in need of healing or a miracle?
Do you need the tender touch of God in your life?
Is there a dream inside you that only He can make possible?
Are you in need of a fresh encounter?
Do you desire a deeper, more intimate and powerful relationship with the Lord?
Are you ready to have heightened sensitivity to the desires of God?
Do you need to break away from bondages that have been holding you hostage?
Is there a friend or loved one that needs Salvation?
Do you desire to know God's will for your life?

Spiritual habits promote spiritual MATURITY.

Hebrews 5:14 NIV
But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.

Spiritual habits develop spiritual POWER

Spiritual habits develop spiritual POWER.

Acts 4:13 NIV
When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.

Spiritual habits produce spiritual FRUITFULNESS.

Spiritual habits produce spiritual FRUITFULNESS.

Deuteronomy 5:33 NIV
Walk in obedience to all that the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess.

Spiritual habits lead to personal and spiritual FREEDOM.

Spiritual habits lead to personal and spiritual FREEDOM.

Psalm 119:45 NIV
I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts.
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