Matthew 21:21-22(The Message) But Jesus was matter-of-fact: “Yes—and if you embrace this kingdom life and don’t doubt God, you’ll not only do minor feats like I did to the fig tree, but also triumph over huge obstacles. This mountain, for instance, you’ll tell, ‘Go jump in the lake,’ and it will jump. Absolutely everything, ranging from small to large, as you make it a part of your believing prayer, gets included as you lay hold of God.”
The Dictionary of Bible Themes states it this way; “God promises to hear and respond to the prayers of his people, when they pray in the name of his Son and according to his will. God expects his people to make requests of him in prayer”.
That’s what “laying hold of God” means. It’s coming to His Throne, grabbing His feet and not letting go until He answers your request. Just remember that “Wait a while” and “No, I have something better for you” are also answers. Sometimes to His grief, and yours, He will allow what you ask for to teach you something you need to learn. Remember the axiom, “Be careful what you ask for, you may get it!”
A good way to lay something important to you before God is through fasting. Now before you stop reading, let me give you a recent example.
Pastor Matthew Hagee of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas gave a great sermon on “The Power of Fasting” on GETV.org. He said “Fasting is not about giving up food. It’s about giving up something that’s important to you. If what you are fasting (giving up) is not important to you, your fast will not be important to God!”
There are different kinds of fasts you can choose. I chose Daniel’s 10 day fast as found in Daniel 1:11-13”But Daniel appealed to a steward who had been assigned by the head of the palace staff to be in charge of Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah: “Try us out for ten days on a simple diet of vegetables and water. Then compare us with the young men who eat from the royal menu. Make your decision on the basis of what you see.”
Being a diabetic, giving up food entirely was not an option but there were some items I could give up. My home-brewed Caribou coffee (sigh) and other favorite foods, leaving me with beans, eggs and peanut butter for protein and fresh fruit and veggies and lots of hot green tea and water.
I also gave up Face book (gasp). This was the hard part as Face book is my main social connection while I’ve been dealing with Mono for the second time in my life, it’s been six months so far. (Side bar – Mononucleosis, also called “mono,” is a common illness that can leave you feeling tired and weak for months).
Back to my reasons for fasting, I determined there were four things I wanted to ask for and or commit to; to come under the Spiritual Authority of God and those Pastors whose care He has placed me under, the restoration of my family, healing my broken heart, and to make a way, where there seems to be no way, to get my outstanding bills paid.
The two biggest answers, so far, have been the healing of my heart and finances. During these ten days the scabs finally fell off of the wound in my heart. Oh, there will be scars, but they are no longer infecting my soul with its disease. As for the finances, someone cleaned up a mess they made in my name two years ago and is sending me a check for the amount they owe.
To me, these are the powerful results of my laying hold of God and I’m encouraged to do it again. I encourage you to try it, too. Just remember that whatever you give up or fast, must be important to you or it won’t be important to God.
(As a side benefit of fasting, ladies, I lost two pounds!) Also if you are going to fast food and have a medical condition check with your Doctor first. Gals who are pregnant should not fast food as both you and the baby need the nutrition.
God bless you and please let me know how your fast goes so I can join you in prayer.