As we approach a new season of worship and mission here with The Hallows Church, we do so with great expectations of our great God. We desire to be a part of a movement of the gospel throughout the wonderful city of Seattle. To that end, we are setting time aside this week to pray and fast for the magnification and the multiplication of the gospel in our church and throughout our city. We invite you to join us.
Prayer and fasting are often found holding hands in Scripture. We do not fast every time we pray, but we pray every time we fast. In fact, one of the purposes of fasting is to strengthen our pursuit of God’s glory, provision, grace, and guidance in prayer. John Calvin said, “Whenever people are to pray to God concerning any great matter, it would be expedient to appoint fasting along with prayer.” Calvin is simply recognizing and affirming the pattern of prayer and fasting found in Scripture. We want to accompany our prayer with fasting this week.
As we discussed in last night’s gathering, a biblical fast is a voluntary abstinence from food (or from some other legitimate, normal physical function) for a specified amount of time for spiritual purposes. The three key words here are voluntary, specified, and spiritual. Fasts are voluntary in the sense that we choose to enter into various seasons of prayer and fasting. We do not fast to gain God’s grace but to grow in God’s grace. Also, fasts are for specified amounts of time. A fast is not an open-ended exercise. We don’t start a fast saying, “It ends when it ends.” Such an approach lacks focus and discipline and may be confusing a biblical fast with a political hunger strike. In Scripture, we find people fasting for all different types of time frames (i.e. a part of a day, an entire day, three days, 1-3 weeks, or even forty days). Under the leadership of The Holy Spirit, determine how much time to set aside this week for prayer and fasting. If you do not have much experience with fasting, we encourage you to do a partial fast. Maybe go lunch to lunch or sunrise to sunset. You would miss two meals. In any case, abstain from food but not liquids. Please keep in mind that we fast for spiritual purposes. We want to press in and commune intimately and intensely with Christ as we seek His power, presence, and provision for our church.
Our week of emphasizing prayer and fasting will culminate on Sunday, September 30 when we will host a Fall Kick Off BBQ from 4 pm to 6 pm followed by a worship gathering from 6 pm to 7:30 pm. Both events will be held at 717 N 36th St (Fremont Baptist Church).
If you have questions about prayer and fasting, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 206.428.7644.