I love the sermon we had at church this Sunday. I was so inspired because I passionately crave closeness with my Lord. I love slow dancing through my life with Him. I deeply long for intimacy with Him. It’s more valuable to me than anything else. More than everything else.
We’re talking about less being more when it comes to gaining intimacy with GOD:
There’s a lie we’ve bought into that says: I’ll grow if I go. We believe that just going to church is all we need to do to grow. It’s great to go to church, but the point is transformation. The point is growing in Spiritual maturity. We need a crisis of transformation. Are we changing? Are we experiencing transformation?
What we need is intimacy with GOD. This should be our goal. This is more than just going to church. We’re talking about change. You can’t come away from an up close, intimate relationship with God and be the same. Are we changing? Growing more spiritually mature?
One way to gain intimacy with GOD is through fasting. We traditionally think of fasting as doing without something in order to pray and ask GOD for something we want.
Fasting is where less is more.
Fasting is voluntarily denying yourself of something in order to increase time and intimacy with GOD.
It’s denying yourself to provide yourself with this encounter with God.
We sometimes think GOD as a genie in a bottle where we ask Him for something we want and it stops there. But no. GOD wants a relationship with us. The goal of fasting should always be intimacy.
Jesus Himself fasted:
The Spirit then led Jesus into the desert to be tempted by the devil. Jesus fasted for 40 days and 40 nights. After this fast, He was, as you can imagine, hungry. But He was also curiously stronger when the tempter came to Jesus. Matthew 4:1-3
We grow and become transformed by fasting. We gain power and strength from this intimate time spent with Daddy. It’s digging in deeper with Him. It’s what our motive should be when we fast – to gain intimacy with God. This strength helps us in dealing with the enemy’s prowling around in our lives.
Jesus has a fundamental expectation that we are going to fast. It’s expected of us:
And WHEN you fast…. Matthew 6: 6-18 (Emphesis mine)
See that? Jesus didn’t say IF. He said WHEN. It’s expected.
Fasting also reveals a few things for us:
1. What really controls us.
Do not allow this world to mold you in its own image. Instead, be transformed from the inside out by renewing your mind. Romans 12:2
Beware of the way that culture shapes you. It’s difficult to see the ramifications of our own culture while we are in the midst of it. Think about the trends of our culure and how they are impacting you. Disengage so you can properly see how much. Once we let go of something, we become more aware of the hold we let it have on us. Skeptical? Try stepping away from Facebook or that online game you play and you’ll truly see it’s grip on you.
Fasting is paradoxical. In fasting, we embrace emptiness in order to experience fullness. When we get quiet and still, we get fullness in Him.
2. My abuse of time.
We’ll discover how much more time we have to seek intimacy with GOD when we disengage in order to grow more intimate with GOD. There are things we’ve allowed to use up massive amounts of time that is meant for us to spend with Him. We are wasting time. Period.
What helps you feel close to GOD? Whatever it is, when fasting, do that because the goal in fasting is more intimacy with GOD.
Human beings have an undeniable propensity toward become obsessed with things that ultimately have little meaning or value. We become obsessed or addicted to something that has little value. Don’t know of anything affecting you this way? Again—try doing without it to get perspective on it.
3. That more is not always better.
We think that more is always better.
Our biggest temptation is not the ridiculously evil–but the deceptively good. We get ourselves busy, busy, busy with more, more, more of all sorts of things that replace time of gaining more intimacy with Daddy GOD. We need less of something in order to have more of what’s most important.
You, GOD, are my GOD, earnestly I seek for you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. Psalm 63:1
You know you’re missing something. You know there is a void in your life. Did you know that’s your soul thirsting for GOD? This world – this life IS a dry and weary land. It can’t ever quench your thirst because it’s just shifting sand. It’s dry and weary. Why? There’s nothing here that your soul is longing for. It can’t satisfy that emptiness within you. You try to fill it with many things but it doesn’t help because you live in a dry and weary land and your soul thirsts for GOD. How much sand would it take to quench your thirst? More sand just compounds thirst and you’re never satisfied. You try and quench that thirst by relationships, sex, drugs, activity, people, and working. GOD is the only thing that quenches that thirst.
As you’ve read this, GOD has brought some things up in your heart that you need to do. Whatever GOD is speaking to you about right now, go and do it and don’t delay. If the enemy can’t get you to deny what GOD wants you to do, he will get you to delay what GOD wants you to do.
GOD, help us to embrace emptiness in order to embrace fullness. In You.
My pastor said it best. I love to take notes during church, but you can click here to hear this sermon directly from him with more detail. You’ll want to be sure and watch until the end because you will be so blessed by what’s there.
You can also subscribe to the feed from our church at this link, but if you’re in the area of any of the locations, drop by. You’ll be blessed.