Charitable giving, as explained in Matthew 6:1-4, should not be done to be seen of man, but in private to God and He shall reward you openly. Regarding prayer, Matthew 6:6 reads, “when you pray, enter into your closet and shut the door, then pray to your Father in secret.” As with fasting, verses 17 and 18 of the same chapter read, “when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face that you appear not unto men to fast.”
Jesus fasted for 40 days in private, away from man. Just Him, God, and the devil. The devil tempted Jesus with food, but Jesus resisted him with the Word of God. During your fast, Satan will tempt you to eat against your vow, just as he tried with Jesus. The devil appeals to the human flesh to rob people of spiritual blessings.
Adam was robbed of his blessing when he ate the fruit Eve gave him from the forbidden tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Esau sold his birthright to his brother Jacob for a bowl of stew. For centuries, countless others have lost their blessings for food and fulfilling the lusts of their flesh, “for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage” 2 Peter 2:19.
Fasting helps cleanse us of corrupt thinking and of worldly things accumulated in the heart. It helps to make our heart receptive to God and sensitive to the Holy Spirit. When God sees man seeking Him in the secret place, He says, “Humble yourself, pray, seek my face, turn from your wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14.
With a contrite heart, say this prayer:
“Father God, order my steps in this new year. Reveal and take everything out of me that keeps me from you. I repent of my sins. Pronounce blessings on my entire family and on my children’s children. I want to leave a legacy so profound that it will outlive me and bring glory to your name. I pray that an abundance of souls will be saved in my church, community, nation, and around the world. Bless me with financial and spiritual abundance unlike I have seen before so I can bless others for your glory in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
Fast. Pray. Give. Seek God.