Day 15 of 21 • This day’s reading
Day 15: When the Church in Antioch Fasted!
Two weeks completed and one more to go! By now, you may have discovered a momentum in your prayer and fasting lifestyle. Even though fasting is a personal journey, we’re a part of a larger body of believers who are also petitioning in prayer. We’ve discussed extensively the personal impacts of this season, but corporate prayer and fasting has the power to change situations and structures greater than ourselves, and potentially even beyond our time!
In Acts 13, we see a commissioning take place. It’s during the church’s fasting season in Antioch that Barnabas and Paul were summoned and sent out by the Holy Spirit. Further on, we’ll find that they preached the Gospel across countries, established churches, raised leaders, and provided teaching. While Jesus came to the Jewish nation, this church’s corporate prayer and fasting propelled an apostolic expansion of God’s Kingdom towards the Gentiles. Indirectly, the church in Antioch may have interceded for our salvation and ministry today!
These are fruits from a corporate culture of prayer, fasting, and worship. It’s through these seasons that early Christians received direction, wisdom, and power from the Holy Spirit. When churches intentionally incorporate prayer and fasting as a lifestyle, God speaks and leads. Unfortunately, churches can grow more concerned with their own agenda despite their good intentions. Without the Kingdom focus of prayer and fasting, our decisions may shift away from seeking God’s will for every season, and into positive acts without divine direction.
Every believer has a role in the Kingdom, and this season may help clarify your calling. Even Barnabas and Paul received their revelation of God’s purpose through collective prayer and fasting. Some of us may resonate with their commissioning to be cross-cultural missionaries and church planters. Others may be called to be leaders in the marketplace, hospitals, or schools. Wherever He sends you, He’ll equip you with the grace and power to fulfill that call.
But more importantly, prayer and fasting are first an internal expansion of God’s Kingdom in your life. Revival and breakthrough begins from the inside as we grow in Christ. Even if our feet don’t tread into new ground, prayer and fasting equip us to influence the Kingdom of God everywhere we go.
Content from: www.bible.com