So Lord Jesus, we give you all the praise. It’s in your name. We pray. Somebody say amen. Secret sauce. What is the word? Secret sauce means it’s an element or a quality or ability or practice that makes something or someone successful. What’s your secret sauce? What’s your secret sauce to being distinctive or setting, setting you apart. It’s also called the essential yet largely unknown ingredient to one’s success here at Mt. Carmel Church.
If I was to talk about the secret sauce of Christianity, secret sauce of your relationship with Jesus, this part is very important. Two things I think are very important that we’re going to talk about today. Prayer and fasting. It’s a secret sauce. It’s something that I think helps us be a distinct Memphis, be successful. Our relationship with God, that if we subtract these things from our walk with Jesus, we’re not going to be as successful as he wants us to be. So what is about prayer and fasting? Prayer. We hear a lot about, you know, we should pray, you know, people talk a lot about prayer, a lot of sermons on prayer. We’re gonna talk about prayer. So come back and the next few weeks we’re gonna talk about prayer and how to pray boldly, how to pray specifically, what kinds of prayers we’re going to break it down.
So if you’re like, if you have trouble praying, if you have trouble knowing what to pray, there’s a time in my life where I was like, okay dude, God, um, helped me have a good day. And uh, as legitimate prayer, I’m struggling to figure out what else to say about how you pray. So if you’re struggling with know how to pray, if you never been able to pray for an hour, will you to start with praying five minutes, you’ll start with praying here at Mt. Carmel Church. Five minutes. We’ll break that down. So it’s not this week though. So don’t pay attention to that until next week. But then, but the other part that’s not talked about much is fasting. I was raised in church and I never heard any messages on fasting. Nobody ever taught me about fascinating. I thought it was some for weirdos to do. Why would you fast? Once I realized that fast wasn’t talking about speed, take a second.
Once I realized that fasting was talking about like, so you really don’t eat food, that’s what fasting means. I was like, I’m out. I’m out. Skip. You know how you got a song? You’re like, let’s, let’s listen to something like Alexa, skip. You know, that’s what I wanted to say. When you’re talking about fasting Mt. Carmel Church. I’m like, preacher, skip, skip. Let’s get on to somewhere where I can eat and love Jesus. That’s all I want to do. So, so what does it mean to fast? But notice what it says here in Matthew. Chapter six says, and when you pray, when you pray, and then in Matthew chapter six verse 16 and when you fast, so there is a time to pray and there’s a time to fast. So what is fasting? Let me tell you what fasting is not. Fasting is not merely going without food for a period of time.
That’s called starvation. That’s not what fasting is about. Nobody’s trying to starve anybody that’s not Christian. It’s not, doesn’t make you a more Christian. If you can see how long you can go without food, that’s not fasting in of itself. It’s not something done by just a bunch of religious fanatics. It’s not something done only on special occasions or once a year. Let me give you some types of fast. They’re there in your notes, but if you want to follow along different types of fast that you can be a part of it Mt. Carmel Church. One is that absolute fast. All these are found. The first three are found in the Bible. The fourth one we kind of added, but the first one, absolute fast. No food or water. Again, I don’t recommend that for a long period of time. A normal fast is no food but water allowed.
Only. The third one is a partial fast abstaining from some foods, some drinks or things, but also some people, Tom will include in there fast abstaining from certain things, whether it be TV, video games, social media, et cetera. So those are just different types of fast and we’ll talk about the purpose of the fast, but again, the biblical definition of fasting is abstaining from food for a spiritual purpose. That’s a key part. A lot of people leave that out when we talk about prayer and fasc and maybe we didn’t do a great job in marketing Mt. Carmel Church. You know, we talked about 21 days of fasting. Really it’s 21 days of prayer and fasting. 21 days of just fasting is called hungry bitch. But what we’re wanting to do is 21 days of prayer and fasting. In other words, it’s not just about what I’m subtracting, like I’m taking food or or TV or social media or something, whatever I’m trying to take out of my life, it’s what am I adding?
What am I moving towards? What am I getting more of? God. So we’re doing 21 days of prayer and fasting is not to focus on what I can’t have, but it’s talking about what God wants to pour into my life. Here’s a couple of things about fasting that I think it’s important. Fasting helps reveal Lordship. Fasting helps reveal Lordship. Who’s going to be the Lord of our life? Why do we fast again? Number one may be why food? Why, why? What is the big deal about food? There’s no other thing in my life. I don’t know about you. There’s no nothing else in my life that I say no to. That’s a bigger deal than saying no to food. Like for me to say no to TV. That’s admirable and that’s cool and maybe I need to do it a little bit, but food is something I have to have.