3.13.13 {esther fast}

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3.13.13 {esther fast}

God is always loving and moving among the orphans of this world.

His plan cannot be thwarted, yet we can forfeit our part or participate.

our family is participating by calling an orphan our very own - making her a part of our forever family.

you are on this journey with us either by praying, advocating, giving or adopting.

i invite you deeper.

to hold a fast on K's behalf (our daughter). on behalf of all orphans.

join me on an Esther fast this weekend, March 15-17.

maybe you've never fasted before or have been curious about this spiritual discipline.

here's the backstory...

"'For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father's house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?' Then Esther told them to reply to Mordecai, 'Go, gather all the Jews to be found in Susa, and hold a fast on my behalf, and do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my young women will also fast as you do. Then I will go to the king, though it is against the law, and if I perish, I perish.'" Esther 4.14-17 {emphasis added}

here's how...

i'm growing in this spiritual discipline. i've come to learn and understand more in the past few years. as i have practiced this act of worship, i've grown to crave these intense, intimate hours of longing and desiring more of Christ. fasting is a personal act of worship. yet, i believe, fasting can be a personal discipline that can be used as a gift to another. my friend stacie and my brother-in-law, lee, fasted with us the week of the orphanage meeting that led to our referral. they fasted on our behalf. i can think of no greater sacrificial gift.

do this: check your motives. make sure this is about drawing near to Him and interceding on behalf of others. tell God you want to fast and pray. make known your heart to Him. ask Him to show you what you can give up for 3 days.

next: look at your calendar and be realistic. to fast, you must clear your calendar somewhat of busy, active activities. fasting requires you move at a slower pace than normal. make sure you are at a healthy place to fast from foods or drinks. you can fast from sugary foods or only eat fruits and veggies. you can also fast from web surfing or TV watching.

as a mom who has to be somewhat active with young kids, i find it best to do a liquid fast. i stock the fridge with protein drinks and smoothies. {you're probably good at making them! i buy them from the store!} these drinks give me the boost i need to care for home and family without getting groggy and mean. yet, the hunger pains come and go and that's what turns into prayers for God to act. my children see my dependence upon God. they witness my love for Him if done with a pure heart.

fasting is this prayer for me, "God, I declare my dependence upon You. Daily, I look to other things to satisfy and You are good to provide these: food, clothing, shelter, and love. Today, I give up my dependence upon food and ask that You would satisfy these hunger pains and use them as a reminder that I am nothing without You and need You to act on my behalf and on behalf of ___________. You are worth more than the satisfaction that comes from chewing, tasting, enjoying a meal. I give it up to gain more of You. In this act, I say You are better, stronger, and I and all creation are in Your hands. I beg You to act. I call on You to intervene. In Your powerful Name I pray. Amen."

here's the prayer requests...

these are from Brian Luwis, CEO of America World Adoption, our agency. he and the staff are praying this weekend as well.

Pray for foreign government officials to be convicted of the harm they are doing to orphaned and vulnerable children stuck in institutions with no opportunity to live in a family.

Pray for people around the world to speak up on behalf of orphans and vulnerable children who are

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hidden from the public and are crying out for a mother and father.

Pray for Haiti to lift or significantly increase their quota.

Pray for children and families stuck in the middle of Russia’s shutdown.

Pray for wisdom and guidance for our nation’s political leaders to proactively come to the rescue of institutionalized children who have the fundamental right to a family but are being denied by their government.

and I add, pray for CARA and our orphanage director to successfully and quickly upload & match us with our daughter's profile to the website for us to see her face and be able to move forward with paperwork.

here's what could happen...

Esther's uncle, Mordecai, throws this out there

in verse 14, "and who knows..."

who knows?

perhaps this is why you are reading this post.

perhaps this is why you're heart is stirring towards adoption.

perhaps your response to prayer and fasting will open your heart to what God is wanting you to do next.

perhaps we will see Russia open its doors again.

perhaps we will witness a miraculous increase in adoptions worldwide this year.

perhaps we will hear of countries changing their policies for the good of the orphans.

perhaps we will blessed to play a part...

we have this moment in history to play our part to make kingdom impact - to go before the King with courage
-to fast and pray on behalf of "a people."

join me in fasting this weekend. i and the orphans of the world are eternally grateful.

{the comment section is a safe place where we can dialog about fasting through the weekend, where you can leave prayer requests for adoption processes and orphan stories. consider your thoughts as you write and be sensitive to those who will read them. grateful for you. may we see God move...}