Fasting is one of the five pillars or obligations of Islam that each Muslim is required to participate in so that they are seen as living a good and responsible life. The 30-day fast during Ramadan helps fulfill this obligation. Through this time, Muslims make a commitment to obey, discipline themselves, fellowship with other Muslims, give to the poor and needy, appreciate the gifts of God, and become spiritually stronger.
As Christians, we understand that fasting is not meant to fulfill a religious requirement, but to grow in our relationship with Christ. The greater beauty of fasting represents a desire to draw closer to God because of our love for Him.
Through God’s eyes, we understand the deeper purposes of fasting. In Isaiah 58, we are reminded that in God’s view, fasting is not about being seen, heard, or noticed by Him. The sacrifice of fasting is about celebrating the freedom, compassion, confidence, righteousness, relationship, support, guidance, and flourishing that only a relationship with Christ can give. Jesus alone bridged the divide between God and man.
Also, through fasting we long for greater intimacy with Christ and for His return. When Jesus was asked why His disciples did not fast like the religious leaders did, His response was that they did not have to fast because He was with them. Jesus was kindly informing the religious ones that as long as He was physically present in their lives, He would satisfy them and give them joy. Through fasting, we experience Christ’s presence and the joy that fellowship with Him in prayer and fasting gives us, even as we wait for His return.
Fasting helps draw us closer to God, which in turn equips us for challenges in life so that others around us can be blessed, healed, delivered, and restored. Even Christ reminded His disciples that the ability to perform miracles and see freedom for others is only possible because of prayer and fasting. As Christians, we long to see Christ glorified in every human heart. And we long to see every captive soul set free.
As you pray and fast for Muslims during Ramadan, ask God to perform a miracle and reveal Christ to them. Pray that their hearts would be awakened to His love for them, and seek God for the freedom and spiritual strength that He alone can provide.
JOIN US AS WE FAST THROUGH JUNE 4th
All of us at GCM are fasting through the month of Ramadan, which ends at midnight, June 4th. Consider jumping in with us for the next 2 weeks if you haven’t already. Follow along with our prayer points in the prayer guide we have customized just for you!