This post was inspired by Ali’s latest words shared on her blog. The title comes from a partial verse in Isaiah 58.
For me this scripture speaks of hypocrites who let others know they are “fasting” but they change nothing in their character. They continue on with their normal routines and don’t seek the Lord during this time.
The Lord knows our hearts and we can hide nothing from him! If we are fasting to obtain an answer and are not listening to him via the Holy Spirit, why would we expect to get our prayers answered? Are we willing to listen and obey what we are being told?
Sometimes we may be told to do something that seems odd to other people. We don’t need to seek approval from people when we are truly listening to what the Lord is telling us to do and we do so in obedience. Did Noah get approval from people while he continued building the Ark in obedience?
Do you think the Lord is happy when we go about celebrating all of these “Religous Holidays”, but change nothing in ourselves? Seek the Lord in all things and ask to be delivered from everything you know is holding you back from the truth. You can’t hold onto things such as unforgiveness, and expect the Lord to overlook that can you?
“Cry out loudly, don’t hold back!
Raise your voice like a trumpet.
Tell My people their transgression
and the house of Jacob their sins.
They seek Me day after day
and delight to know My ways,
like a nation that does what is right
and does not abandon the justice of their God.
They ask Me for righteous judgments;
they delight in the nearness of God.”
“Why have we fasted, but You have not seen?
We have denied ourselves, but You haven’t noticed!”
“Look, you do as you please on the day of your fast,
and oppress all your workers.
You fast with contention and strife
to strike viciously with your fist.
You cannot fast as you do today,
hoping to make your voice heard on high.
Will the fast I choose be like this:
A day for a person to deny himself,
to bow his head like a reed,
and to spread out sackcloth and ashes?
Will you call this a fast
and a day acceptable to the Lord?
Isn’t the fast I choose:
To break the chains of wickedness,
to untie the ropes of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free,
and to tear off every yoke?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry,
to bring the poor and homeless into your house,
to clothe the naked when you see him,
and not to ignore your own flesh and blood?
Then your light will appear like the dawn,
and your recovery will come quickly.
Your righteousness will go before you,
and the Lord’s glory will be your rear guard.
At that time, when you call, the Lord will answer;
when you cry out, He will say, ‘Here I am.’
If you get rid of the yoke among you,
the finger-pointing and malicious speaking,
and if you offer yourself to the hungry,
and satisfy the afflicted one,
then your light will shine in the darkness,
and your night will be like noonday.
The Lord will always lead you,
satisfy you in a parched land,
and strengthen your bones.
You will be like a watered garden
and like a spring whose waters never run dry.
Some of you will rebuild the ancient ruins;
you will restore the foundations laid long ago;
you will be called the repairer of broken walls,
the restorer of streets where people live.
“If you keep from desecrating the Sabbath,
from doing whatever you want on My holy day;
if you call the Sabbath a delight,
and the holy day of the Lord honorable;
if you honor it, not going your own ways,
seeking your own pleasure, or talking too much;
then you will delight yourself in the Lord,
and I will make you ride over the heights of the land,
and let you enjoy the heritage of your father Jacob.”
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.
“10000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)- Matt Redman (Cover by Shirin George/ Daniel George/ Joshua George)”