Why are you observing a fast? Is it for the purpose of spiritual renewal? Are you looking for advice? For the purpose of healing? For the purpose of problem-solving? For extra grace in dealing with a challenging situation? Inquire of the Holy Spirit about what He wants you to remember from this time. You will be able to pray more specifically and strategically as a result of this.
Before You Continue...
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According to 2 Chronicles 7:14, we humble ourselves before God by fasting and praying in order for the Holy Spirit to stir our souls, awaken our churches, and heal our land. Make it a top priority during your fast.
What do you do spiritually fast?
So, now that you know what fasting is and why it's important, where do you start? Twenty various recommendations are provided here to assist you get started fasting and stay motivated.
Identify The Purpose
The first step in fasting for any Christian is to figure out why you're fasting. Do you want to empty your stomach through fasting? Do you want to improve your connection with God? Are you fasting to show your support for the poor? It's crucial to understand why you're fasting. It establishes a context for your experience.
Commit to a Time Period
The second stage in fasting is deciding on a certain time period and committing to it. When you're a newbie, it's not a good idea to go for a long period of time without eating or drinking anything.
Try to work out what is realistic, and keep your commitment fresh in your mind.
Find Your Weaknesses
Try to predict your weaknesses, or the times when you will feel the worst or most tempted to eat, before the fast begins. Pray for God to provide you with the strength you require when you require it, and He will.
Tell only a Few People
According to Acts 16, when a believer in Christ fasts in secret, he or she will be blessed. You should just tell two or three people that you're fasting. It doesn't matter if it's a spouse, a sibling, or a friend. They may also serve as a partner in terms of accountability.
How do you prepare for spiritual fasting?
I don't want to go without saying that fasting with someone is wonderful, but you don't have to do it. Fasting in seclusion with the father is truly commanded in Matthew 6:18. We are not to boast about our fasting or wear a mournful expression to make others feel sorry for us. So, if you're fasting with a group or just one other person, keep it hidden and only think of God.
Decide what Type of Fast you Want to Do
The various sorts of fasts have been explored previously. To summarize, there is a;
- Material Fasting entails avoiding material possessions or activities such as television, social media, and habits.
- A supernatural fast is one that can only be observed when under God's supernatural presence. Consider Moses, who went without sustenance for 40 days and nights.
When it comes to choosing a type of fast, there is no right or wrong answer. If you're new to fasting, I recommend starting modest. Cut out a meal and then fast for the rest of the day the next time. Then progress to three days, then a week. You must begin small and work your way up to strengthen your spiritual muscles.
However, the correct response boils down to one thing. What are you being led to do by the Holy Spirit? When people fasted in the Bible, the number of days they fasted wasn't the most significant factor. They concentrated on the reason for their actions and did what they believed God wanted them to do. So, what are your intentions and what do you feel compelled to do? That is what you should do.
Plan your Meals
For obvious reasons, you can skip this section if you're undertaking a complete or ordinary fast. However, if you're undertaking a partial fast, meal planning is critical to staying on track. Until I went on a fast without a plan, I didn't think it was that significant. You will be hungry and most likely experience little discomfort while fasting. There's nothing worse than getting to mealtime and realizing you don't have anything to eat since you can't just grab something as you normally would. That's a recipe for a hangry person.
Make a meal plan and a grocery list at least a few days before your fast. Get your meals ready ahead of time and out of the way. Fasting is all about focusing your attention on God. So don't let last-minute grocery shopping and dinner preparation consume all of your time. It will simply frustrate you and take you out of the mental condition you were in before to starting the fast.
How long should you fast for spiritual?
Fasting duration is also determined by personal inclination and ability. Fasting for long periods of time is not possible for certain people due to health issues. Others may fast for several days at a time. Remember, the purpose of fasting is to strengthen your relationship with God. It is not a question of how many days or how long one can fast. Fasting is a very personal experience with the Lord. As a result, there's no need to compare how long you've been fasting to how long others have been fasting.
Before you start fasting, I urge that you pray and ask the Lord how long you should fast for. If you're new to fasting, I recommend beginning with one meal or one day. You can continue for extended lengths of time after you are more conscious of and familiar with the topic. You may decide after the first day that you want to continue for a longer period of time. Keep track of how your body feels if this is the case. You may feel lightheaded and weak if your body isn't used to fasting. Once your body has become accustomed to fasting, you will be able to fast for extended periods of time without experiencing these symptoms.
The length of your fast is also determined by what you're fasting from. You should not fast for longer than two or three days if you are fasting both food and drink. Furthermore, if you are only fasting from food, you can fast for extended periods of time. Some people will abstain from eating and drinking, but will sip juice to stay energized.
Types of Fasting
Abstaining from social media, entertainment, sex, sweet meals, or a variety of other things is another type of fasting. You can fast for substantially longer lengths of time if you choose to fast from the following items. This is due to the fact that these fasts have no negative impact on your health. In fact, they may help you live a healthier life. Fasting from these foods for prolonged lengths of time is something I suggest.
If you're married, make sure you have an agreement on sex abstinence with your partner. “Do not deprive each other except by mutual permission and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer,” Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 7:5. Then get back together so Satan can't tempt you because of your lack of self-control.”
How do you fast and pray?
These are trying times that necessitate prayer and fasting. Disease is rife; the global economy is shaky; and peace and security are challenged at every step. Now it's your turn “We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). Regardless of the difficulties we endure, all of Christ's disciples are united “by him who loved us, we are more than conquerors” (Romans 8:37). Even Nevertheless, many of us are dealing with pessimism, loneliness, financial devastation, fear of violence, disease, and mortality in greater numbers than ever before. When Christians experience hardships like these, the Bible instructs us to seek God's help via prayer and fasting. When Jesus left his disciples and ascended into heaven, he stated, “They will then fast” (Matthew 9:15).
Fasting is defined in the Bible as the self-denial of some or all food or drink as a means for believers to convey their deepest worries to God during specific times of prayer and worship. It was used in both private and corporate settings, and for both short and extended periods of time. Fasting was practiced in numerous places during the Bible's time. Fasting was used by God's people to mourn the loss of loved ones (2 Samuel 1:11-12). They fasted in order to be ready for special times of rejuvenation in God's presence (Numbers 29:7). Fasting allowed the faithful to demonstrate real contrition for their own sins as well as the misdeeds of others (Ezra 10:6). They fasted as they called out to God in times when they needed God's help the most (2 Chronicles 20:3). It's no surprise, then, that Christians have always turned to God in difficult times through prayer and fasting throughout church history.
Unfortunately, many modern evangelicals have forgotten about God's merciful provision of fasting. We bear the weight of believing that the faithful will be content, even pleased, regardless of the horrible circumstances that may befall them. As a result, we deny ourselves the chance to express our deep sorrow for sin, our terrible need for Christ, our hunger for church renewal, and our burning desire to see Christ's merciful and just Kingdom extend across the world. However, as our terrible days make us realize how desperately we need God's mercy, we must once again humble ourselves before Him through prayer and fasting.
First and foremost, participating in a day of prayer and fasting is a spiritual decision. The Bible does not tell us exactly what we should do or say. As James stated, “God will approach near to you if you draw near to him. Purify your souls, you double-minded, and cleanse your hands, you sinners” (James 4:8). Above all, we must seek out ways to humble ourselves before the Father in the name of Jesus Christ and by the power of the Holy Spirit.
This can be accomplished in a variety of ways. If you have children, you can simply lead your entire family in special prayer sessions during one or more meal times while fasting. The children may be cared for by one parent while the other spouse spends time alone with God. Throughout the day, couples might alternate between praying alone and praying together. You might be able to meet up with other Christians for a time of prayer outside of your home during the day. The many biblical instances show that God gives us a lot of freedom.
Even so, I've noticed throughout the years that many evangelicals now find it difficult to devote an entire day to prayer and fasting. So, here are two straightforward options.
- Plan Scripture, hymnal, or prayer book readings for each time of prayer.
- Read aloud from the Scripture passage, hymnal, or prayer book you've chosen. (duration: 10 minutes)
Excerpts from Richard L. Pratt, Jr.'s book, Pray with Your Eyes Open, by Third Millennium Ministries President Richard L. Pratt, Jr.
Does God reward fasting?
Fasting is a spiritual discipline that the Bible recommends. Fasting is something Jesus expects His disciples to do, and He claims that God praises fasting. According to the Bible, fasting is defined as purposefully reducing or eliminating food consumption for a certain period and purpose.
Can I drink water while fasting and praying?
Solid foods lead your body to enter the fed state, which lasts for several hours as your body breaks down and digests your food ( 1 ). Water, on the other hand, has no effect on blood sugar or insulin levels. As a result, you can safely consume it when fasting intermittently.
What do you eat when fasting in the Bible?
Daniel fasted twice, according to two Bible scriptures. To set himself apart for God, he fasted for the first time, eating only vegetables and water. Daniel stopped eating meat, wine, and other rich foods during a second fast, which is addressed in a later chapter.
Pastors throughout the country are inviting their congregations to join in similar fasts or diets inspired by these texts to help them lose weight and deepen their faith.
The First Presbyterian Church of Honolulu in Ko'olau in Hawaii runs an annual 21-day “Daniel Fast” for worshippers to encourage good eating while also helping people maintain their faith by refocusing their attention on their food.
Pastor Dan Chun of the First Presbyterian Church of Honolulu wrote on his diet support website, “We believe the Fast will help recalibrate your spiritual compass, which can grow rusty and out of tune because of ordinary cares and anxieties.”
The Saddleback Church, which has over 20,000 members, has developed a website and book, co-written by head pastor Rick Warren, to advocate a long-term version of the diet dubbed “The Daniel Plan.”