After the revelation of the importance of The 40, it seems necessary to remind ourselves who God is. I have always been hardcore and radical about everything I do, and some people may mistake my intensity for harshness.
Exodus 34:6-7 And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, 7 keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin,
Here, God tells Moses He would show him His glory, and this is what happens. The nature of God that he saw was mercy, grace, patience, goodness, truth, and forgiveness.
During The 40, it is quite probable that you may mess up or give in to temptation at some point. I have even had a dream that I was eating meat. In the dream, I was horrified because I was supposed to be fasting.
Remember this, God looks at and judges your heart. When your heart is to commit yourself to Him in love and obedience, He forgives the mistakes and rewards your intentions. In contrast to this, the enemy will try to make you feel like a failure and use this tactic to pull you out of The 40. There is forgiveness in “failure” and grace in the mistakes.
If your heart is set to seek The Lord, do not let anything hold you back from seeking Him:
Hebrews 12:1-2 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
We are looking to Jesus in the middle of our struggles, sins, and failures; and He will reward our hearts.
I think it was two years ago that my Dad was having a lot of pain in his knee and was thinking about getting it replaced. God prompted me to volunteer to fast and pray with Him for healing. My Dad was a little reluctant and told me he wanted to pray about it first. About a month later, I found out that from that time, he had no more pain or trouble with his knee. This was a blessing for me to see how God honored my heart. Even though I did not really want to go through the fast, I was willing, and God worked because of that willingness.
I share this story as an encouragement to you that in the event any mistake might be made. Press on! Keep going! Do not give up on The 40! God forgives completely and can cause you to walk in the fullness of The 40 if your heart is to press in and please Him.
Please know, this also applies to those who are not physically able to go The 40. If you started on only water and have to shift your fast because of health issues, keep your heart right. In doing this, God will help you continue in the same power of The 40 even if it has to change.
Jesus, bless us with success and bring forgiveness for what others may see as failure. Help my heart to be set totally to praise, honor, and glorify You!
- Ask God to reveal any area of weakness and to strengthen you with His mercy.
- Any area of supposed failure to keep The 40, ask God to forgive you and recommit to press in to Him.
- Walk The 40 in full assurance that God is with you to help, strengthen, and even restore you if you fall.
May you be blessed to fully complete The 40 whether by God’s strength and sustenance or by forgiveness and restoration!!!
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!