Pastor Mark E. Whitlock, Jr. of Christ Our Redeemer AME Church invited the faith community to join him in fasting for spiritual renewal and an end to gun violence.
Through the fast, which started Nov. 11 and continues until Jan. 21, Whitlock believes God will heal “our lives, our land, our churches, our communities, our nation and world.”
Among the incidents spurring Whitlock to action are the mass killings in Pittsburgh and Thousand Oaks as well as the recent murder in Las Vegas of the 25-year-old son of the Rev. Dr. Najuma Smith-Pollard, pastor of Word of Encouragement Community Church and a close friend of Whitlock’s .
“Fasting is one of the most powerful spiritual disciplines of all the Christian disciplines. Through fasting and prayer, the Holy Spirit can transform your life, transform family problems, and gain new power. According to scripture, personal experience and observation, fasting and prayer can also effect change on a much grander scale,” insisted Whitlock, a doctoral candidate who also serves as executive director of the USC Cecil Murray Center for Community Engagement.
“I am convinced that when God’s people fast with a proper biblical motive – seeking God’s face – with a broken, repentant and contrite spirit, God will hear from heaven. God will heal our lives, our land, our churches, our communities, our nation and world. Fasting and prayer can bring about a change in the direction of our nation, the nations of earth and the fulfillment of the Great Commission – this is powerful motivation in today’s unsettled world,” he noted.
“For those who desire both inward and outward impact, humbling yourself before God through fasting is a good place to start. God’s power can be released in and through you by the enabling of the Holy Spirit.”
Whitlock, who has completed five 40-day fasts in the past, encouraged believers to support the campaign through a one-day, multiple days or an extended 40-year fast. Acknowledging the fast as an “exciting step of faith,” he added that he is available to share the knowledge and fulfillment that he gained through the experience.
To learn more, contact Whitlock at firstname.lastname@example.org.