I went to The Call in Washington, DC this past Saturday.
It's a 12 hour day of fasting and prayer for our nation put on by IHOP (not pancakes). It was hot, and it was hard, but so good at the same time.
Truthfully, I haven't fasted in forever. It's something I really feel the Lord calling me to these days and this event was a really good stepping stone back into that for me.
There is something amazing about denying your belly the food that it grumbles for, in essence, denying your flesh nature. As it says in Romans 8, we struggle so much between our flesh and our spirit. I feel this struggle daily, as I'm sure everyone does. So, when you are able to suceed in denying your flesh as you do in fasting, it feels really good. That momentary victory over your flesh is worth all uncomfortable feelings that happen when you are fasting.
Fasting is really effective for a lot of things. It focuses your attention on the Lord for one thing. When I fast, every time my stomach grumbles, I just use that as a reminder to pray and talk to Jesus. It's a sweet thing to walk hand in hand with Him throughout the day.
One thing that was talked about a lot from the stage was the topic of rebellion and the lack of discipline in our generation. I think that it's so true. I see it in my life, and I see it all around me in people my age. I find it so easy to get into a mindset of "taking care of myself", which really should be labeled, "doing whatever I want when I want with no regard to what the Lord wants". That is rebellion. When I ignore what I know the Lord would want me to do to satisfy an urge to do something that I want to do, it is rebellion. It says that my decisions and wants are more important than the Lord's. It shouts that I am in control of my life, when really the Lord should have that job.
I am a person who likes control. It's hard for me to bend my knee and submit to what the Lord wants me to do sometimes. I have this urge to plan my own day, make lists and forge ahead full steam in my own desires. It's not like any of the things I do on those days are bad things, they are just things that are done outside of the Lord's will for that day.
It takes a strong desire to fight rebellion in your heart. The first step is realizing it's there. The next is asking the Lord to take it from you and then bracing yourself to just stand as it's torn from you. It's often a hard process, because you must be broken to rip something out of you. Broken is when we stand before the Lord totally aware of our shortcomings and sin, yet still rest and bask in His glorious freeing complete love and acceptance for us.
There is a verse in the Bible, Exodus 14:13-15 that states "The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still". I think that it an excellent example of what happens when you are broken. You are empty of every thing you have to fight with, and so you just are still and the Lord fights for you. Beautiful. Simply sweet and beautiful.