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Pentecost Fast
January 22-31

Day 9 

 

The tongue and heart

Proverbs 18:21 The tongue has the power of life and death and those who love it will eat its fruit.

Death does not mean annihilation, but separation. A bad comment to your spouse will lead to separation and a good one can lead to a healthy connection. In the space of 12 hours, one of my sons told me he didn’t like me anymore, which crushed my heart and later on whispered to me “it's you and me forever daddy”, for which I felt like giving him a car.

There is something powerful about the things we say. I like to think that our words are either fertilizer or poison in our friendships, emotions, mental state, spirit; in everything.

What you’re saying will either build or destroy.

Proverbs 12:18 The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

Proverbs 13:3 Those who guard their lips preserve their lives, but those who speak rashly will come to ruin.

Proverbs 15:4 The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.

It's a basic concept I know, but if it were as easy as saying just “watch your mouth” or “talk better” we’d be done! But James 3:7 says that people can tame all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and fish, but no one can tame the tongue.

I believe no one can tame the tongue, mainly because well before anything rolls off your tongue there is something in your heart. If you’re trying to stop swearing, purity is a heart thing not just a discipline thing. If you’re pessimistic, faith is a heart thing, not a discipline thing.

Luke 6:45 “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of”

This means that those words didn’t just appear out of your mouth - they’ve come from somewhere; your heart!

When your heart is in a certain condition it is easy to diagnose, because your words are leaking it out. Our words can be seen as a thermometer to see our hearts' temperatures.



Question 1: What are your words like in different situations?

Question 2: What does this say about your heart's condition?

Question 3: In your time with God, ask Him to help you identify heart problems and how to see them transform.

PROVERBS 18:21 NIV

The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.

Fasting Basics

SIMPLY STATED, BIBLICAL FASTING IS REFRAINING FROM FOOD FOR A SPIRITUAL PURPOSE.

According to the Bible, there are three duties of every Christian: give, pray and fast.
Biblical fasting takes a lot of discipline and strength—strength which you can only receive from God. Your private discipline will bring you rewards in Heaven, says Matthew 6. When you give God your first through fasting, prayer and giving at the beginning of the year, you set the course for the entire year.

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?


BIBLICAL FASTING FOCUS

1 TIMOTHY 2:1-2
“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”

ROMANS 12:1
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service.”

MATTHEW 6:33

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

ISAIAH 58:6
“[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?”

We want to encourage you to target your prayers during the fast. Two specific areas we will be focusing on together are leadership and finances. The Bible instructs us to continually pray for our leaders (1 Timothy 2:1-2). When we lift up our leaders, here in the United States and around the world, we can expect God’s peace in our lives and in our nation.
Another great promise, from the book of Isaiah, proclaims that the chosen fast will “undo the heavy burdens and let the oppressed go free.” We are living in tough economic times and we know that so many people are under a financial burden. As we come together to fast and pray, we believe that your burdens will be lifted and that financial blessings will be released into your life!
We encourage you to seek the Lord in prayer and let your decisions about your biblical fasting come from Him. Ask the Lord to show you areas to target during your time of fasting and prayer. We believe that, as we pray and seek God and give Him our best at the first of the year, He will bless our ENTIRE year (Matthew 6:33)!

How to Begin
Start with a clear goal. Be specific. Why are you fasting? Do you need direction, healing, restoration of marriage or family issues? Are you facing financial difficulties? Ask the Holy Spirit for guidance. Pray daily and read the Bible.

Preparing Spiritually
Confess your sins to God. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal areas of weakness. Forgive all who have offended you and ask forgiveness from those you may have offended (Mark 11:25; Luke 11:4; 17:3-4). Surrender your life fully to Jesus Christ and reject the worldly desires that try to hinder you (Romans 12:1-2).

Deciding What to Fast
The type of fasting you choose is up to you. You could go on a full fast in which you only drink liquids, or you may desire to fast like Daniel, who abstained from sweets and meats, and the only liquid he drank was water. Remember to replace that time with prayer and Bible study.

What to Expect
When you fast your body detoxifies, eliminating toxins from your system. This can cause mild discomfort such as headaches and irritability during withdrawal from caffeine and sugars. And naturally, you will have hunger pains. Limit your activity and exercise moderately. Take time to rest. Fasting brings about miraculous results. You are following Jesus’ example when you fast. Spend time listening to praise and worship. Pray as often as you can throughout the day. Get away from the normal distractions as much as possible and keep your heart and mind set on seeking God’s face.

How to End
Don’t overeat when the time comes to end your fast. Begin eating solid food gradually; eat small portions or snacks.

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