The hidden power of prayer and fasting

I can’t help but see that fasting is a presumed action in the New Testament. It wasn’t an optional extra. I have thought about it many times and you won’t have to dig very far to see that I often refer to the Lord’s call on each of us to fast.

But I am again drawn to fasting, to understand more and to find the hidden power that it holds. And that is what it holds, a hidden power, keys for the doors that won’t open, release for the heart that is oppressed, breakthrough in the minds that are troubled, it has a hidden power for situations that will not be released unless we engage. But like all things with the Lord, it is not a prescriptive approach. Though we are expected to fast it must come from a living relationship with the Lord else it becomes an empty work. And even then we mustn’t elevate it to a divine ‘fix-all’, something magical or something to use when the Lord needs a heavy hand of persuasion.

Jesus said to the disciples: This kind will only come out by prayer and fasting (Mark 9:29). Fasting unlocks something that regular prayer won’t. I sense it has more power than we realise but for reasons we probably don’t grasp. We look on the outer practice and see that as the key element. Though it is an outward practice (and something not to publicise – see Matt 6:5-18), I think it has a lot to do with our heart and a re-alignment of body, soul and spirit. At the fall of man it was like our flesh became the lead, and people lived from then to satisfy the desire of the flesh. Before I became a Christian I didn’t have any temptations, I only had desires that seemed reasonable to pursue. Only once I became a Christian did a war start in my flesh! I was tempted with many things and had varying degrees of victory. As I began to read and practice fasting my observation was that it realigned the order of body soul and spirit and was effectively saying, ‘flesh, you are no longer in control but my spirit is, led by the Spirit of God’. And that is somehow the

There is a sense of obliquity about it. We tend to fast when we want to see the Lord move in a situation, and there is a truth to this (this kind will only come out by prayer and fasting Mark 9:29), but I think there is more