WHAT IF HUNDREDS OF CHRISTIANS FASTED AND PRAYED FOR 40 DAYS FOR THE SPIRITUAL CLIMATE OF ONE CITY?
A group of pastors in Austin, Texas believe God can change one of America’s most secular cities. They are calling for 40 days of prayer and fasting for the Greater Austin area.
How would it happen? What difference would it make? Why now? Who else is doing it?
The Unceasing Prayer Movement in Austin, Texas was meeting for prayer and planning when Will Davis, Jr announced he thought calling a 40 day fast would be the right thing to do. Immediately everyone wasn’t so sure, but after praying about it, the rest of us agreed. Therefore, we are calling on Christians everywhere in the Austin area to join us.
Fasting and prayer always precedes breakthrough. Consider the biblical examples.
Moses experienced breakthrough on Mt Sinai during a 40 day fast when God suddenly and personally engraved the 10 Commandments onto two stone tablets.
Elijah was defeated, discouraged, disillusioned, and ready to die. But, near the end of a 40 day fast, God appeared to him, spoke to him, and recommissioned the prophet for some of his most effective ministry yet.
Daniel fasted 21 days and received a vision of the coming Messiah and the end of time.
Ezra called an entire people group to a 3 day fast to seek God’s physical protection for a long journey across a dangerous desert. It was granted. God heard their prayer and kept them safe.
Jesus began His public ministry in a 40 day fast gaining victory over the enemy. Nothing about Jesus’ life was ever the same again.
The early church was fasting and praying when the Holy Spirit intervened and sent Paul and Barnabas on the first mission trip to win Gentiles to Christ. That single action changed history.
In biblical examples and in personal experiences we note that big breakthroughs follow periods of fasting and prayer. What breakthrough have you been hoping for?
We do not expect everyone to personally fast for 40 days (although some may choose to do so). We are encouraging a “relay fast” where Churches sign up as many as possible to fast and pray for spiritual breakthrough in our families, our churches, and especially our city. This fast is for spiritual awakening in our hearts, in our homes, and for our City.
Some may fast only 1 day per week. Some may block out a few days or week for fasting and prayer. Whatever we do we want to do it together so that someone is fasting and praying everyday and night during the 40 days. You can sign up for a day- or as many days as you want- at hpbc.org/40days. You will find practical guidelines there too!
Fasting is refraining from food for a period of time to feed your soul on God’s Word and prayer. The Greek word for fast would be translated literally “no eat.” In Hebrew, the word fast translates the ancient word meaning literally, “shut mouth.” That’s pretty clear!
If you’ve never fasted before you might start with half a day by fasting through breakfast and lunch eating nothing until the evening meal. Or, you may fast 24 hours. Either way, avoid any solid food or dairy, and all sugary drinks. Instead, drink water and 100 % fruit juice. (If you’re a coffee drinker you might drink a cup to avoid headaches associated with suddenly stopping coffee.)
If you take a medication that requires you to eat, but you want to fast, eat only the minimum needed to take the meds and spend more time worshipping God through prayer. You can do this.
Throughout the 40 days, keep your focus on God, being obedient to His Word, and especially pray, pray, and pray some more. You’re not alone. I will be writing frequently to encourage you on the journey.
Hundreds of other Christians are fasting with you. Don’t lose hope- this is how breakthroughs happen!