January 4, 2023

2023 Fast

“O Lord, I call upon You; hasten to me! Give ear to my voice when I call to You! Let my prayer be counted as incense before You, and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice!”

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭141‬:‭1‬-‭2‬ ‭ESV

Our prayers are like a pleasurable aroma before God and our worship is more pleasing than a sacrifice. The theme for 2023 is “Incense Arise.” This year the Lord is calling His church to renew its priority as a house of prayer, lifting a continual incense before Him. As we accept this calling, Wellspring is launching 2023 with a week of fasting and prayer.

Why do we fast? We were designed by God to be His living, walking, talking vessels. Now is the time to make sure that we’re not carrying and distributing things that are not from Him, including our mindsets and attitudes. We want Him and only Him. As we fast, we turn off all of the faucets of the world and we determine to be emptied of all of the corrupting waters. This is our dedicated week to cleaning our vessel and saying, “Lord, fill me fresh with Your living waters.”

From January 7th to January 14th, we’re turning off all of our entertainment faucets, including social media and video games, and we’re committing ourselves to worship, pray, and being filled with the Word of God. Also, we’re turning off our pursuits of the flesh by abstaining from food. I’m doing a liquid fast, so I’ll be abstaining from all food, but I’ll still be drinking water and the occasional coffee or juice or broth. If you’re new to fasting, commit to abstaining from just one meal each day. Take that time that you would be eating and set it aside for God. Pray and worship during that time.

One of our traditions during the annual fast is for each member, including children, to seek the Lord for a word for the year. Each person gets one word and a scripture that will be their word for 2023. On the last evening of the fast, January 14th, each member will write their word and scripture on a board and then share it with the rest of the congregation. My family hangs up each of our boards in our living room where we can see them and continue praying and meditating on them throughout the year. I’m excited to see what God has for each one of us this year!

Next week is going to be a wonderful week with many opportunities to gather together for worship and prayer:

  • Saturday, Jan 7, 5pm – I’ll share a message on being “Divine Filters” and then we’ll kick off the fast by worshiping together.
  • Sunday, Jan 8, 6pm – Wellspring and Freedom Place Church join together for worship and prayer.
  • Thursday, Jan 12, 7pm – Wellspring will have worship and prayer.
  • Friday, Jan 13, 7pm – Wellspring will have worship and prayer.
  • Saturday, Jan 14, 5pm – We’ll worship together and share our 2023 words.

Come and join us! Let your incense arise!

His love is better than life!

Matt Neese

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