21 January 2007
· “No room at the Inn” – Luke 2:7 – Greatest event in history, not recognised, ‘no room’.
· Jesus wept over Jerusalem – Luke 19:41 – Greatest opportunity for Israel – “No room for God”.
· Core meaning of “sin” – No room for God – serious eternal consequences.
· What room are you making in your life, relationship with God?
· Choice – “make room for God in your life, relationships, schedule, finances”
i) Make your relationship with Jesus your first priority – Time / Schedule
ii) Develop clear faith goals.
iii) Speak faith filled words.
iv) Cultivate vital relationships.
v) Pursue personal breakthrough.
vi) Step out of your comfort zone / cave.
· Matthew 6:16-18 - “Your Father which sees in secret shall reward you openly”.
· Life tends to become “cluttered”.
· Clutter = to fill or litter with things in disorder.
= a state or condition of confusion / chaos.
= a state of untidiness, messiness, disorder.
= unwanted echoes that interfere with observation on radar.
· Fasting is not: 1) A way to manipulate God.
2) A substitute for obeying the Word of God.
3) Missing a meal or two.
· Fasting is to increase sensitivity to the Holy Spirit and Word of God.
· Fasting is to change how we live/relate and to increase influence.
· Fasting is to bring focus and simplicity to your life.
· “Focus” = to centre your attention / activities on one point.
= to bring an object into clear detail by adjusting vision.
· Focus attention on Jesus Christ and His purpose and plans for you.
· Matthew 6:18 - …reward you openly”
· “Reward” = to return to you something that is owing.
3. Examples of People Rewarded:
i) Acts 10:30-31 - Cornelius rewarded – Visitation and Anointing.
ii) Acts 13:2-4 - Paul rewarded – Direction and Commission.
iii) Ezra 8:21-23 - Ezra rewarded – Family and Finances Blessed.
iv) Luke 4:14 / Matthew 17:2 - Jesus rewarded – Breakthrough in Problem.
· Each person had a focus – a point where they centre their attention on.
· Each person was rewarded – The spirit of God moved on their behalf.
4. Fasting with Focus:
a) Types of Fast:
i) Normal fast – going without food for a definite period.
ii) Absolute fast –going without food and liquids (short)
iii) Partial fast – going without certain foods / meals.
· People with hypoglycemia or other sickness.
· People who have eating disorders.
· Could fast off things other than food – e.g. T.V.
b) Focus – Matthew 6:22
i) Have a clear purpose: What am I fasting for? Be specific!
ii) Establish clear steps – what foods, how long, when to start and end?
iii) Establish a place and time with God, environment affect emotions.
iv) Plan out that time - worship, Word of God, Prayer.
v) Be prepared for reactions – tiredness, irritable, ‘aloneness’, discouraged.
This is a season of plouging and sawing – Galatians 6:9.
vi) Keep a journal – record scriptures / impressions / insights.
c) Fasting for Breakthrough:
i) Identify the issue, problem, besetting sin.
ii) Renounce ungodly control.
iii) Acknowledge pride and self deception.
iv) Forgive to overcome bitterness.
v) Submit to God’s authority- overcome rebellion.
vi) Take full responsibility for your actions / reactions.
vii) Reject consciously the sin / bondage.
- Confession – bold speaking to the issue to be rejected.
- Acknowledgement – bold declaring what the Blood of Jesus did.
- Meditations – picturing the bondage broken.
viii) “….He shall reward you openly”