By Dr. Chuck Hetzler
In the last two weeks of August, 3,884 believers from across the United States prayed, repented, and cried out to the Lord when they participated in CU Day and Night’s “Return to Me” fast.
The ultimate focus of fasts hosted by NYC-based CU Day and Night is an increase of God’s presence and power in our nation. These prolonged fasts may be the closest way the church in America can come to fulfilling our part of 2 Chronicles 7:14 in a modern context – “If my people will humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways.”
In the Bible fasting literally means to be hungry and is a voluntary way for someone to humble themselves before God by refusing food and sometimes drink for a period of time. Fasting is a biblical requirement for Christians, and this act of humility, when done in coordination with repentance and obedience, has great power before God. For these reasons, Christian Union Day and Night sponsors two extended fasts each year, once at the beginning of the academic year in August and once at the beginning of the calendar year in January.
Many participants in our August fast experienced greater degrees of God’s conviction as well as answered prayers. Here are some of their comments:
Bert B from Maryland: “Thank you for leading this repentance and fasting period. I am immediately sensing the working of the Holy Spirit and hungering to be made whole again. Lord, I want your outcome in everything! I am also sensing the importance of the timing of this fast and repentance in my life and that of my family. Thank you so much for having a heart for God and to be fully His!”
Debra from Missouri: “God has been moving already in my family as one of my daughters has decided that she needed to read her Bible from cover to cover. She grew up in church, but has not had a personal encounter with Him since…until 3 days ago. God is stirring a hunger in her heart! Thank You Jesus. Do more in her heart and in her life.”
Chris T. from Montana: “Through this season of fasting and prayer the Lord has shown me the offense of my sin, my sinful heart and the cost of my complacency and duplicity. I am staggered by these truths. God is holy: God is not satisfied with my ‘fire insurance’ heart toward salvation and obedience to his Word. The hope of eternity, the hope for our nation and for the world is that God will be honored and obeyed and that I will turn from my sin, that I will pray and that I will be faithful to speak the truth to others in love. So much more and I thank you for the invitation.”
George from Massachusetts: “Thanks for heading this up—very worthwhile and much appreciated! I prayed last week for a friend (a Harvard graduate), who has neck/spinal issues due to past injuries. He was unable to move his neck, turn his head, etc. After prayer, he said he is one-hundred percent improved! I believe God is answering prayers in a powerful way—and seeking believers who will simply pray in faith.”
Cory Lotspeich, CU Martus (University of Pennsylvania) Ministry Director: “Thank you for leading the charge of holiness over the past few weeks, I can honestly say that it has awakened my heart for the Lord in greater ways, re-dug dry wells in my life, and has called me to the stature of which I should be living.”
“High hopes for the days ahead!”
While CU Day and Night rejoices at God’s work in the lives that were impacted and the nearly 4,000 who joined, there is an understanding that many, many more American Christians need to join efforts like these.
What would be the spiritual impact if 40,000 signed up to repent, pray, and fast? What if 400,000 took part? Only God knows the answer, but CU Day and Night’s sense of calling from God is to mobilize 2-3 million American Christians to seek God in order to see the kind of change our nation needs. As more and more Christians join these initiatives, our prayer and expectation is that God will then “hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
Most of the 4,000 individuals who signed up for this fast found it through social media advertising. The generosity of our Cornerstone Partners enabled CU Day and Night to use online paid ads to invite Christians around the nation to join the free fast. CU Day and Night is looking both for Cornerstone Partners who want to expand the numbers of American Christians seeking God as well as participants to pray, fast, and repent during fasts and who join a dedicated prayer team for national revival. All this information and more can be found at the ministry’s website, http://www.cudayandnight.org, along with more of the testimonies from “Return to Me.”
Dr. Chuck Hetzler is the executive director of Christian Union Day and Night, a ministry that promotes spiritual strengthening in Christians across America, helping them thrive in order to make an impact in an increasingly secular culture by covenanting together for successive spiritual initiatives.
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