We're learning that fasting has rewards (Matthew 6:17-19) – “and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.”
Reward #4: To break every yoke.
A yoke is a bondage or a bad habit that you cannot seem to break and leave behind you for good. When you fast, bad habits ARE broken. They absolutely are! Addictions to various foods or drinks are broken when you fast.
In addition to substances (food, alcohol, drugs), any and every yoke (addiction or dependency) can be broken.
Behaviors (self-pity, critical spirit, self-condemnation, gossip)
Emotions (anger, rage, lust, excitement, neediness, jealousy, envy, suspicion)
Activities (entertainment, games, TV shows, Facebook, golf, gambling) — and there are many more.
Humans can be addicted to almost anything.
We want to be yoked to the Lord, not addictive substances. Years ago, Christian artist Carman had an album “Addicted to Jesus.” That’s a yoke we can LIVE with! “My yoke is easy and My burden is light,” Jesus said in Matthew 11:30.
YOGA Means “YOKE”
Believe-it-or-not, there are many addicted (yoked) to the practice of yoga, not realizing it is Hinduism and thus yoked to a different god. In fact, the postures in yoga are “offerings to the 330 million Hindu gods” (see “Why a Christian ALTERNATIVE to Yoga?” ). I did yoga for 22 years (ages 7-29), so I understand its pull, lulling mind-numbing effect and pride-based deception.
Thank God there's PraiseMoves which incorporates the Word of God with movement, thus enhancing our relationship with the Lord and building on Faith AND Fitness!
Comfort Food vs. The Comforter
ANYTHING that we turn to for comfort which does not include THE Comforter, the Holy Spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ, can become an addiction. We need our “fix” – and the sad part is, nothing and no One but Jesus can “fix” us.
Addictions to sugar, nicotine, caffeine and unhealthy food portions are broken by fasting. We’re consecrating ourselves — walking in the spirit more and not fulfilling the lusts of the flesh. We know we can do it now. God can work in and through us more easily. We can hear His still, small voice more readily. When we leave the fast, the opportunity then comes to “LIVE THE FASTED LIFE” and not go back to the way we were.
Wait a minute…YOU break every yoke? Who, ME?
Notice the scripture says, “And that you break every yoke“? YOU break the yoke? How?
I heard a Bible teacher once say that when he realized the hold that Coca-cola had on him, he decided he would never drink it again. And he never did. “I didn't want to let anything have that kind of hold over me again. That was 30 years ago. I recently found I was a little too fond of iced tea, so I stopped it for a few weeks, just to prove I could. Now I have it every so often, but it doesn't have a hold on me — I don't HAVE TO have it.”
That's important. Those *little* addictions can lead to big open doors for the enemy. I'm thinking more about my treat or my golf game than I am investing time in my relationship with the Lord. I'd rather watch TV or chat with friends online–and perhaps the Lord wants me on my FACE before Him, not Facebook.
YOU determine to do it, and ask the Lord to help you. Fasting gives you the strength to follow-through.
Please pray with me–Declare Out Loud: “Lord, this is the fast that YOU have chosen for me. Thank You for loosing the bonds of wickedness in my life. You have undone every heavy burden. I am no longer oppressed, for You have set me free. And now, I declare that the power of every yoke, every bondage, addiction and unhealthy dependency is BROKEN, OBLITERATED AND DESTROYED from my life. The anointing of the Lord is upon me by His grace — His anointing is the “burden removing, yoke destroying power of God.” You have set me free, Lord God! I am free indeed and I walk in newness of life, and I will never be the same again! I'm yoked to Jesus – and His yoke is EASY and His burden is light! I'm FREE! Glory to God, thank You, Father God!”
Now continue to thank God throughout your day today. Thank Him that you ARE free (you ARE!!!). You are moving more into the image of Jesus Christ — from glory to glory (and from there to more glory and GLORY — all to the glory of the Lord!).
“Christ in YOU, the hope of glory!” (Colossians 1:27).
Please share your comments below – and share/like this post if it’s been helpful to you. Think it may help someone else, too? I hope so!
Radio Interview with Pastor Jentezen Franklin (author of “The Fasting Edge”)
DAY ONE – Delight in the Lord (instead of food?)
DAY TWO – Loosed from Wickedness
DAY THREE – Undo Heavy Burdens NOW
DAY FOUR – DO and then Feel
DAY FIVE – Oppressed, Go Free!