Good Friday: Fasting Guide
by Mike Willis
Good Friday Fasting
In Mark 2:18-20, some people asked Jesus why others fasted but His disciples were not fasting. Jesus said it was because He was with His disciples and that His disciples would fast when He is no longer physically here. That time is now. We fast because He is not here, but He is risen! Jesus is not here but He hears. We lose our way, Jesus lights it. We cry for help, God is our help.
Fasting is a temporary time of not-eating in order to, 1) Commit typical meal prep, eating and clean up time to prayer and to, 2) Illustrate our dependence on God as our provider and sustainer. Jesus said, “When you fast” not “If” then taught us not to fast as some do, to be seen and to impress people, but in order to draw near to our Father in heaven (Matthew 6:16-18). Fast a meal or more today. Fasting creates space to pray and reflect, worship and love God. The goal is drawing near to God and God drawing near to us. If you fast the entire day, we will break the fast tonight with communion during our Good Friday worship service.
Read Matthew 26-27. Observe our Lord, His love and His Sacrifice.
Pray for 5-10 minutes starting all sentences with “Thank You Jesus for…”. Finish all of those sentences with who He is, what He has done, what He has said, what He is going to do, the things He has provided for you by His grace.
Pray for 5-10 minutes confessing your sin, really allowing the Spirit to reveal any unclean way within you.
Pray for 5-10 minutes being grateful that you have been washed clean by Jesus and your standing before God is all because of Jesus and not you.
Pray for 5-10 minutes about what God is showing you personally during this season of coronavirus. Let the Lord use this trial to produce in you steadfastness in your faith in Jesus Christ.
Pray for 5-10 minutes for your loved ones.
Pray for 5-10 minutes for our church family.
During the remainder of the day, pray for the following:
This pandemic is opening people’s eyes about many things. We feel them too. What is really precious in life? What is most important? Who is most important? What is most enduring? Who is most enduring? What is actually worthy of my worship and attention? Pray that people all over the world will recognize that Jesus Christ is the only rock and all else is shifting sand (Matthew 7:24-27). Pray that people would recognize that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow while all else is constantly changing (Hebrews 13:8). Pray that people would ask Jesus, who came to us, for forgiveness of their sins and new life rather than trying to work their way to God (Romans 10:9). Pray for specific countries you have heard about in the news. Pray for friends you have who are from other countries.
Tens of thousands have died from coronavirus. Many more than that are sick. Their loved ones are devastated and scared. Pray the God of all comfort (2 Corinthians 1:3-5) will be near to them and make Himself known as their Comforter. Pray they would feel that God is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18). Pray for economic recovery for nations and neighborhoods. Pray that eyes would be opened to needs in our communities to be addressed with our loving effort now and for years to come.
Wisdom for our Leaders
World leaders are faced with very difficult decisions about lives versus livelihood, both of which have terrible consequences if the leaders shift too much in one direction. Medical professionals and scientists are racing to create testing, treatments and vaccines while needing to yield to the wise timelines of safety. Pray that God, who appointed and gifted these leaders for such a time as this, will direct them (1 Timothy 2:1-4). Pray these leaders will pray. Pray these leaders will lead as servants.
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