Got this from Jentezen Franklin's fasting blog. Thought it was really good you can check out the fasting resources from Jentezen Franklin at jentezenfranklin.org/fasting. It's a great site for encouragement and information while you are fasting
As we conclude our first week of fasting I want to share with you a simple truth that the Lord made very real to me today. Let me start by saying that we must remember that fasting is an act of worship to the Lord. The scriptures say that Anna the prophetess, “served God with fastings and prayers night and day” (Luke 2:37.) In Acts 13:2 the scriptures say that a group of prophets and teachers “ministered to the Lord and fasted.” You see fasting is all about worship. I am not saying that we should worship on the fast; I am saying that fasting is worship.
In order for our motive to be right in fasting, we must remember this truth. The only way our rewards can be limited in the kingdom of God is if we have impure motives. The Lord spoke very clearly to my heart and said, “Up until today you fasted for yourself, but now it is time to fast for Me.”
Is it possible that we could be fasting for ourselves? By now we have shed a few pounds and we “feel” better about our spiritual condition, but those are only by-products of fasting. In Matthew 6 the Lord talks about 3 spiritual disciplines that should be a part of the life of every believer: giving, praying and fasting. His objective is not to encourage us to do them, but rather to instruct us regarding the posture of our hearts while doing them. His discourse on each discipline begins with, “when you give…, when you pray… and when you fast…” Through those scriptures we see it is possible to lose the rewards of fasting because of impure motives.
So then what should be the posture of our hearts while fasting? Simply that He is worthy for our entire lives to be laid before His feet. He is worthy of the sacrifice of 21 days. Look with me at Mark 14:3.
And being in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper, as He sat at the table, a woman came having an alabaster flask of very costly oil of spikenard. Then she broke the flask and poured it on His head.
For the first few days of the fast I have been asking the Lord to anoint me for the upcoming year. But my prayer is changing. Is it impossible that the Lord would allow me to anoint Him? I could imagine for three years the crowds thronged Jesus to receive miracles and healing. The disciples huddled around Him to receive special revelation of parables. This appears to be the first time since Jesus’ birth that someone entered His presence only to bless Him.
In John 12 the scriptures tell us that this woman is Mary and that the oil she anointed Jesus with was equal to, if not more than, one year’s income. In other words, she poured out an entire year upon Jesus. That is our motive for fasting. He is worthy of our entire 2011. We are pouring our lives out to Him in an act of worship because He is worthy to receive it.
Jesus responds to Mary by saying, “…wherever the gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her” (Mark 14:9). Jesus spoke to Mary’s destiny and future as a result of her worship. Isn’t that what we want, for our Father to speak His blessings over this entire year?
My friends we should not ask for His anointing until we have first anointed Him. We should not ask for His blessing until we have first blessed Him. Out of the entire universe we possess the only thing that God does not have and that is “ourselves.” Yes we belong to Him in an omnipotent way, but our affection and worship must be offered to Him willingly.
It is not wrong to ask Him for healing, wealth and favor for this year, because He is our Father and He desires to show His blessing in our lives. However, when we pour ourselves upon Him, He will pour Himself upon us and in Him is everything we need.
Mary is told that wherever the gospel goes, her story will be there too. As we pour out our lives to the Father, He will allow us to accompany the gospel. Where He is working this year, we will be there. There will be natural disasters, financial loss and major tragedies this year; as well as great salvations, revivals and miracles. Whether in disaster or revival it is those whose lives have been poured out that will be where He is working.
Anna and the group of men that I mentioned earlier ministered and served the Lord through fasting. Before we preach, prophesy or serve people; we are starting this year by ministering to the Lord. That is our ministry to people, to first minister to Him. When starting the year with fasting He anoints us to be where the gospel is at work!