“And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?” Luke 18:7 (NIV)
I spoke the last time we were together that God invited me to fast in the fall of 2017. Just like the saying for Spiderman goes, “With great power comes great responsibility,” and that’s how I felt going into that fast. I knew that while I was invited by God to fast this particular time, it wasn’t going to be easy. I had a feeling that God was getting ready to do amazing things in the life of my family, and I was ready, but I also knew from experience that when God is doing amazing things, the enemy doesn’t step aside and say, “Oh, let me get out of the way.” No, he tends to fight harder and make life more difficult… temporarily. Let me say that part again… temporarily.
This period of fasting was no exception. While the enemy has realized that resisting the actual food I’m fasting has gotten easier since the summer of 2016, he now uses other circumstances in my life to try and shift my focus off of God to give up. However, because I knew that God had invited me, because I was fairly certain God had great plans for our family this time, while the circumstances weren’t pleasant, I was able to stay focused on my commitment and not give up. However, I had to rely completely on God’s strength in order to accomplish that goal.
I had to stay focused on reading my Bible, praying consistently and almost constantly, be willing to be rebuked, corrected or reprimanded by God (listen to the warnings He gave me about various areas in my life) and then have a heart willing to change. It felt as though the enemy attacked our family in many different areas – I don’t think there was an area that wasn’t touched.
However, through it all, I had a choice. Continue to walk the journey to the finish line or give up because it was just too hard. Giving up isn’t an option. I’ve been waiting for this breakthrough for our family for years. God has been whispering to me about changes that He wants to give our family since the fall of 2015, and encouraging me to continue to believe even when it looks futile.
I don’t want to speak for God or put words in His mouth, but I believe He invited me to fast this time because the breakthrough is getting ready to happen. I want to make sure I do my part. Do I believe that by fasting, I’m the one who will create the breakthrough if it occurs? No, but I do believe by obeying God and stepping into this invitation fully committed, it shows my trust in Him to do His will, in His time. Do I believe a breakthrough is occurring? Yes, I truly do. Will God get all the glory when it happens? Absolutely!
But regardless of the blessings God chooses to give after the fasting period is over, it feels good to obey God for the sake of obedience. I feel honored to be invited to fast for my family… as the wife and thermostat of our home. I choose obedience to my Father because He’s my Father and I want to be an example to my children that when we are called to obey, it’s always the right choice, whether blessings occur afterwards or not.
© Cheri Swalwell 2018