FASTING – Why and How by Larry Stockstill

From a session today by Larry Stockstill he entitled The Pastor and Personal Fasting

GO AFTER GOD – get hungry for him! 

Read the book of Acts – you see that when they fasted, they heard – “The Holy Spirit said.” There’s a message on the radio now – we are not tuned in. 

How deaf are we to the Holy Spirit? 

God told him, ‘I don’t need decision makers I need hearers. I make the decisions.’ 

Why fast? Because we SERIOUSLY need to hear the Lord!

Why? Because…

We don’t know what we’re doing!

Admit it – I need to hear!

And when you fast, your spirit comes to the forefront and you fine tune the station. It goes to stereo, no static. This is when you start to love fasting, because you know SOON you will hear him more clearly. 

He was on a long fast. First time he did 21 days. Saw the door of the Governor’s house open (vision) – that led to 6 years of bible studies with the Governor and his staff every Wed night!

Don’t ever make a major move without a 3 day fast. You won’t hear God clearly enough without that. 

4 Great Reasons To Fast

DIRECTION

This is what Ezra did, Esther. They got clarity through fasting. 

Acts 13:2-3

CONSECRATION 

Luke 4:2f

The Lord has no sin issues. He was temptable but sinless. He had no reason to fast to conquer the flesh but he consecrated himself. He was led into the desert – this could be where he got his first messages from the Spirit as he grew in the desert and studied the Word. 

When you go somewhere to be with the Lord – don’t go to eat. Go away to hunger for God. Could you fast the first 3 days of every month, asking God to guide you? Pray through the month ahead. The services you’ll plan. The edge is here. The flow of the Spirit, you detox body mind and spirit. 21 day fast – about 10 days in you start to feel so much stronger. (Water only? Juice? Puree steaks doesn’t count…) You’ll find the Lord speaks so clearly you can’t write it all. 

PROTECTION

Ezra 8:21 

He didn’t want to ask for a bodyguard and shame God. He fasted. 

Esther asked ‘do not eat or drink 3 days we will fast too – then I will go to the king and if I perish I’ll perish.’ 

There are hindering spirits. Breakthroughs come through fasting. Against demonic opposition. Land contention. 

One day a week – Fri? Saturday – fast till supper time. When you have gone in fasted – people will see the difference. They will say ‘What happened?’ The point here is you’re praying for the weekend services. For power…

AUTHORITY

Luke 4:14 – the power of the Spirit. 

Boldness is a quality we have to have in our ministry. That’s not extrovert or introvert. Fast and be bolder. You are not relying on gifts but anointing. When there is a crisis – you don’t know what to do… STOP EATING. You need clarity. You will get it. By the hour. Go before the Lord. And you will have boldness. When you come out of the crisis you can eat! This is why the devil hates it. 

Try it for a few days then preach – see the difference! 

You will not die by not eating 3 days. It will ‘turbo’ your prayer life.

Q: If you can’t fast because of medical issues? Ask your Doctor.

Q. How do you teach that this is grace, not ‘you earn somethingfrom? – focus on consecration and direction. Paul did this – when they wanted to hear God. I don’t need to fast for my needs to be met. But I need to hear God for whether I should hire this person, what’s our theme for this year?

Q. How do you build this into the people? 

Start with… Media fasts? Phone fasts? Self denial…

Daniel fast? Can be way better eating! 

Do it all to SHIFT FOCUS –

  • Focus on the Bible, the family. Pray. Turn from the distractions. To get out of your orbit. 
  • This is NOT a punishment or self-flagellation!

If you get people want to fast long, 21 days – give health guidelines. AND get a meeting every day at the time you’d eat, to pray instead corporately…

Why fast? TO GO AFTER GOD! (tell the people this! It’s worth it!) 

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