One great result of fasting is the ability to help us focus on hearing the voice of God. Understanding what God is telling us is an essential element of having a thriving relationship with Jesus. Listening is a learned skill and it can be frustrating. If you have children, you can probably understand the struggle of listening. I’ve repeated myself a few times before I’ve gotten the requested behavior. Truth be told, however, sometimes I’m the worst. My wife has repeated herself a few times before she’s gotten the desired behavior. :& Over the years I’ve had to learn to remove distractions to listen more effectively.
I’m a guy. I can not multitask. I have a habit of continuing on what I’m doing while my family is talking to me. This almost always results in me getting partial information or missing altogether what I’m being told. Sorry family. :-( Maybe you can relate. I am learning though. It’s a conscious decision to remove distractions and focus. In fact I have to tell myself, “Listen Justin.” When I do, I get much more out of the conversation.
The same is true when communicating with God. It takes focus and intention to hear God’s voice. Quiet yourself down, Focus on Jesus, Listen for spontaneous thoughts, and Write them down. These 4 steps will help you hear God more clearly. Remove distractions and be intentional. This is where fasting will be a huge benefit. It will put you in a place to hear easier because you’re already making a conscious decision to sacrifice some comfort for Jesus. Sacrifice and obedience will lead to closeness. Find a time or place where you can focus. I realize this is hard with kids, but your kids seeing you pursuing God will go a long way in their relationship with Jesus. If they see He is a priority in your life, they will be more likely to make Jesus a priority in their life.
Check out these verses in Ephesians. They are a great reminder of what Jesus can do through us as we fast and hear His voice.
“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” (Ephesians 3:20-21, NIV.)
I’m looking forward to hearing what God will and is speaking to us through this fast. Stick with it!
P. Justin Werven
New Life Worship Center