Prayer Guide Day 3 – Fast for Others
Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?
Is it not to share your food with the hungry…?
— Isaiah 58:6-7
Isaiah warns that we may slip into a pattern of doing right things yet miss the power of the action. Fasting has been considered a deeply spiritual act throughout the history of the church, but we can loose sight of its purpose when fasting becomes just an individual discipline.
As Christ followers, when we deny ourselves for a period of time, we are reminded that we are called to a life of sacrifice and service to others. That lifestyle creates space to respond to the needs around us. The family and the church are two institutions that are to care for each other and also care about others — ministering to both their spiritual and physical conditions.
Isaiah writes later in Chapter 58 that when we take time to care for those in need, God’s light will shine through us, and our night will be like the noon day. May God’s light shine through us to our neighbors across the street and across the ocean, so they may also see his beauty and hope.
Congress announced a budget-cut for its feeding program several decades ago. Congressman Tony Hall and his wife became Christians prior to these cuts. Mrs. Hall showed the congressman Isaiah 58 and said, “Well, do we believe this or not? If you want to feed the hungry, fast until something happens.” So Tony announced he would not eat until something was done about hunger. Ten days into his fast, over nine thousand high schools had students participating with him.
Tony’s campaign went viral before the internet existed. As a result of one person’s obedient fast, countries from around the world joined the United States in giving over $500,000,000,000 (not a typo) to feed hungry people.
“I never felt closer to God than during that fast. Fasting so that hungry people can be fed and to know that Jesus is powerful.”
— Ambassador Tony Hall
Dear Jesus, you modeled a life that included fasting and generosity. Please give me the strength and discipline to sacrifice things in my life so that others who have less, may have more.
Hunger is still a life and death issue. Over 10,000 children still die everyday from hunger related issues.
— Poverty.com, OXFAM, UNICEFDOWNLOAD PRAYER GUIDE