One of the major components of fasting is prayer. We are not simply skipping meals, or setting aside things our flesh desires but we are creating time within our busy lives to pray. If I am fasting a meal it is not so I can get more work done but it is to spend the time I normally would be eating in prayer. With prayer being a primary focus it is important for us to realize that there are certain things God says matter when we pray. Over the next few days we will be looking at a few of these to make sure our prayers are not being hindered in any way. The first thing I want you to see is that our relationships with other people matter when we pray. Look at what Jesus says here in Mark.
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”
He is saying that if you are praying and you remember that you holding something against someone and have not forgiven them you should stop right there and ask God to help you forgive them, so that He would in turn, forgive you.
The book of 1st Peter takes it even further.
7 Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.
Our relationship with our spouses matters when we pray. We need to treat each other with love, honor and respect so that nothing hinders our prayers.
As you spend time in prayer today make sure to ask God if there are any relationships in your life you need to work on or pray about. Then whatever He reveals to you make it a priority in prayer.
Pastor Brad Davis