Irene Wintermyer: Fast Forward
But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.~Matthew 6:17 ESV
The anxiety of receiving a letter from the IRS is beyond comprehension. This unfortunate experience occurred over taxes submitted by an accountant.
The whole purpose of paying hundreds of dollars for a professional to do your taxes is so this doesn’t happen, right? But because I signed the documents in faith, believing the numbers were true, I was responsible.
When I reached out to the accountant, she didn’t respond to my calls, texts, or emails. As I prayed about the situation, God prompted me to fast for a day. After my morning Bible reading and prayer, I searched the internet for information and found an IRS advocate phone number. The person I spoke with was sympathetic, gave a few suggestions, and answered all my questions. She then recommended I speak with an IRS underwriter who could tell me about the error or errors made.
The underwriter, also truly kind, talked me through the red flag identified. I could have complained and threw blame on the accountant, but instead of venting, I chose to gain insight into the problem. On several occasions the gentleman said, “I’m sorry you’re dealing with this.” Before our conversation ended, he gave me a suggestion, one that might eliminate the penalties.
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.~John 16:33 ESV
After hanging up the phone, I had an overwhelming sense of peace. God answered my prayer by placing these kind people in my path. The underwriter even thanked me for not making the conversation about the accountant. All too often, they receive calls from people who refuse to accept any accountability for the errors and treat the IRS employees harshly. I’m thankful God gave me a humble spirit because the man may not have gone through the extra step of helping me construct a letter.
When I initially asked God for help, I wanted Him to make the problem go away. Instead, the Holy Spirit drew me to Mark 12:17, which tells us to give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s. Immediately my prayer changed to, “God, I know that whatever the IRS decides, You will help me through it.” He helped me discover peace in the situation.
We knew fasting and following our True God would ensure that He helped us travel safely to Jerusalem—and He did.~Ezra 8:23 The Voice
Fasting humbles our heart. When we take the focus off ourselves as we seek God, we hear and feel Him more clearly. Personally, I prefer to food fast, but some may fast from sugar, meat, bread, or even electronics. When we fast, it’s more than just abstaining. It’s replacing those things with God throughout the day.
I’m a true believer in fasting and have had prayers answered and seen miracles happen. Regardless of how or when He answers, God will reward our faith and obedience.
Do you have a request that requires fasting and prayer?
Father God, thank You for the hope I have in You. Give me the strength to know what to fast from, how long to fast, and how to draw closer to You. I want to feel Your presence in every situation I face, and to lean on Your mighty shoulders.
In Jesus Christ’s name. Amen.
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