I see repeatedly in the Bible, in Church history, and in my own life that the prayers that get the biggest breakthroughs are the ones that I care the most about.

In the Book of Daniel, before it talks about the foods that Daniel did not eat, it says that he was “mourning”. What does that mean?

It means he cared about what he was fasting and praying for.

Burden comes before breakthrough. Vision comes before victory.

Daniel was burdened for his nation and had a vision for its restoration.

The same pattern is found in the Book of Nehemiah. This news came to Nehemiah about his nation:

“And they said to me, ‘The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.’” Nehemiah 1:3

What did Nehemiah do?

“So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days. I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven.” Nehemiah 1:4

That is what we are doing right now.

Are you burdened for your country?

What would you like to see happen?

What do you think is happening that grieves God’s heart? What is grieving your heart? Do something about it through fasting and prayer!

It was nothing for Daniel and Nehemiah to fast for their nation because their desire for change was greater than their desire for food.

Burden is where vision comes from. When you feel deeply about something that is not right, you go to places in your soul that you usually cannot reach. It is not a voluntary journey. It is painful. Gut-wrenching. A burden.

When that happens, it is time to fast and pray because it is usually something beyond you, beyond your control or ability to influence.

BUT, when you humble yourself before God in fasting and prayer, God moves. He first moves in you, then He moves around you.

That is exactly what happened with Nehemiah. He ended up being the leader that restored the nation.

We are the church! We are called to fast and pray to bind and loose the will of God on the earth. It will not happen without the Church’s partnership.

Jesus DOES NOT like what is happening in the world, and certainly not in our country. But something can be done about it – if we fast and pray and humble ourselves before God.

Do not think you have no influence. You have access to the very throne of God, the Maker of heaven and earth.

Fast, pray, and watch God move.

John