Week of July 17-21, 2017



Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high. Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the Lord?
Isaiah 58:4-5


Man chooses a fast and God chooses a fast. Many religions require fasting. It is generally accepted in religion that God requires a sacrifice. Many religions serve dead gods, so they must borrow ideas from the bible to find their way to their gods. Fasting is accepted as a way to afflict one’s soul, and is a way for people to feel worthy before their god. Pagan religions use fasting as a way to appease an angry god. They assume that their god will be pleased with them if they make self-afflicting gestures. This is not the fast that our God has chosen. Look at the Mardi Gras phenomenon. Initially thought of as a way to begin a season of drawing near to God, it has become a symbol of decadence and depravity. This is man-made affliction: it always leads to more ungodliness. Man always finds a way to do as he pleases, not as God pleases. God says if we continue in this, our voices will not be heard. When we obey the fast that God chooses, we will be heard and receive a breakthrough.     



            If you are in need of healing, there is good news!

                                 Proverbs 4:20-22 says:

My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings.
Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart.
For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.


So there is life and health in God's word. Since God's word is medicine, we must take it like we would a prescription. I suggest three times a day, like you would your food. Remember, healing is the children's bread. Consider this your "dose" for today.
Remember, read, and meditate three times a day the following:

Isaiah 58:8 ~  Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy reward.

"Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." 2 Tim. 2:15

If you've never studied the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, we invite you to join us as we read through the Bible in a year. Read and meditate on these chapters today:

**July 17 --- Joshua 24, Acts 4, Jeremiah 13, Matthew 27
**July 18 --- Judges 1, Acts 5, Jeremiah 14, Matthew 28
**July 19 --- Judges 2, Acts 6, Jeremiah 15, Mark 1
**July 20 --- Judges 3, Acts 7, Jeremiah 16, Mark 2
**July 21 --- Judges 4, Acts 8, Jeremiah 17, Mark 3
**July 22 --- Judges 5, Acts 9, Jeremiah 18, Mark 4
**July 23 --- Judges 6, Acts 10, Jeremiah 19, Mark 5


  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? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?
Isaiah 58:6-7  


God’s fast is more of a self-sacrifice. It’s the kind that allows others to reap the benefit of our sacrifice. God’s fast is one in which we forgive those who have offended us. It allows the oppressed to go free. It breaks yokes, which increases the anointing available for ministry. When the anointing comes in, all things are possible. People begin to share their goods with those who have little. We see reconciliation in our families because forgiveness and love reign. When man puts down his own way and doing what he pleases, God sees this as the type of fast that He has chosen. God is love and when we cease doing things our own way we demonstrate His love to others. We begin to let God loose in us. We are born again, but it is only when we yield to the Spirit of God who dwells within us that we see the manifestation of His work. Doing things our own way keeps God bottled up and bound within us. When we begin the fast that He has chosen, we cease doing what we please and seek to please Him.          


Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy reward. Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity;
Isaiah 58:8-9 


The breakthrough of God will come upon you suddenly when you afflict your soul by giving your food to the hungry. Is giving to others an affliction of the soul? Think about it. If God tells you to invite somebody off the street into your home for a meal, think about the mental strain that it puts one under. First we want to say it’s not God because it may not be safe to do this. Then we don’t want to be rejected. They may not want to accept our hospitality. We can go on and on for days in this type of affliction. Even after we have obeyed God we may find that we torment our own souls with thoughts of misgiving, self-doubt and fear. Your healing comes when you forget about yourself long enough to glorify God. The lines of communication with God become instantly open. He answers you speedily, even before you call. You will receive revelation, wisdom, and understanding. The heavens open up and the glory of God follows you. You can have what you say in a new way because your righteousness breaks forth. Righteousness makes everything you think, say and do in line with God’s will. The type of fast that He has chosen makes you right before Him. You have no doubt that you please Him.             


 And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday: And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.
Isaiah 58:10-11


Do you need to come out of trouble, darkness, illness, or debt? If you will give food to the poor, you will come out of darkness. If you will cease oppressing others by blaming, faultfinding, pointing the finger at them, God will send water to you even in a drought. Is your water bill out of control? Try allowing God to supply water to you by being kind and allowing people around you to make mistakes without pointing the finger and making a big deal out of their weaknesses and faults. Has somebody been unkind and unjust toward you? Perhaps you tried everything you knew to keep the relationship on good terms, and it seems they never responded in kind. You want to blame them for the fact that they did this. It is difficult for you to let it go. If you will put that away, and allow God to use you, and do something for someone else even when you feel misused, God will reward you greatly. This is the fast that He has chosen.      


And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in. If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.
Isaiah 58:12-14


The joy of the Lord is found in this type of fast. By living a life of sharing what we have with others and loving others, we find that we delight ourselves in the Lord. When we do that, He gives us the desires of our hearts. We allow ourselves to grow in His grace and divine purpose by letting go of selfish and fleshly things. If we put away strife, debate and selfishness, then we and those whom we touch will be known as peacemakers, repairers of breaches, and we will be a delightsome land. Others of like character will spring up from us. God will cause us to grow and multiply. This type of fast is not too difficult for us. It is possible in God. When we do these things, we can see God’s heart and know His ways. His ways are higher than ours, and we have access to a higher place in Him. Should we fast? The answer is obvious to me. The fast that He has chosen is worth it.                 


"Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee." 
Psalm 143:8

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August 19, 2017
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