why fast?

Is this a question you've been wondering about? 

Prayer & Fasting 

Why and for what purpose do we fast?

Fasting was a practice among Christians that can be found in the Old and New Testaments. Consider the case of Moses. Twice, he  went 40 days without eating as recorded in the Bible. When Jesus was in the wilderness for 40 days, he fasted. He taught His followers to do the same thing. He used the word "when," not "if," when referring to fasting.

What is Fasting?

Fasting is another word for abstaining. It can include refraining from food, social media, and entertainment, among other things. Whatever you give up, it should be something you are accustomed to having; so that, it stretches you when you give it up. Here's the point. Giving it up for a period enables one to focus on God. For example, when those hunger pangs happen, instead of turning to get something out of the fridge, you should turn to prayer. When you usually watch your television shows, open your Bible to read and pray instead. Fast from social media or watching sports so you can focus on God. The point is you don't want to make what you do eat or don't eat, how you entertain oneself or don't become the focus. Your focus should be on drawing closer to God. The point is to disconnect enough from your regular patterns and habits to connect more intimately with God.

Is Fasting Safe?

As you begin your fast, you may hear from concerned loved ones and friends who urge you to protect your health. And they are right. You should protect your health. But we want to encourage you that if correctly done, fasting will not only prove to be a spiritual blessing but a physical blessing as well.

However, if you have a physical problem that would make fasting unwise or dangerous (Disorders like tumors, cancer, blood diseases, diabetes or heart disease) and you still want to fast it's important you include your doctor in on your decision and on how or if you should fast food. Also, if you are using any medication, you may want to talk with your doctor before changing your regiment.

Don't forget you have options. If giving up food is a problem for you, then consider fasting TV, Facebook, reading (other than the Bible), or shopping. There are many distractions and ways that we use to stay in control that we could eliminate from our daily routine. If you can identify such other things, maybe you can give those up instead of food.

Are There Different Ways to Fast?

In the Bible, there are several instances where people fasted, but their approach was different in each case. The region of Susa along with Esther and her attendants fasted three days and nights without eating or drinking when confronted with the annihilation of their people. After hearing that the exiled people still living in the province were in bad shape, Nehemiah the prophet  kept a strict fast and prayed to the God of Heaven. Elijah, fasting for forty days and forty nights was made possible by God's provision of supernatural sustenance.  The Prophet Daniel fasted twice in the Bible, according to the book of Daniel. Daniel 1 says that he only drank water and ate vegetables, and Daniel 10 says that he did not eat any rich (or choice) foods, red meat, or wine. However, the passage does not give a detailed list of what Daniel ate. We can see from these two verses and the preceding fasting examples that different people approached fasting in different ways.

 When it came to Daniel's fast, he relied primarily on fresh produce. Even so, your dietary requirements may lead you to choose a different course of action.

"How about juice?" you might ask. A "Juice Fast" consists of consuming only vegetable and fruit juices and water instead of solid food. Many people also include whey protein in their liquid diet. Even if you do not want to make your entire fast liquids-only, substituting one or two meals for liquids could be a good option.

Fasting in a safe way is what's most important.

How will we fast?

We will break the fasting and prayer into 7-day increments. We will be using the ABC method for the fast:

Absolute: Absolute fasting is for those who are able and willing to go without food or beverages from sunrise (6 a.m.) to sunset (6 p.m.)   During these 12 hours, the emphasis is on drawing closer to God while enduring a time of purposeful sacrifice through scripture reading, prayer, and exclusion of nourishment and specific entertainment.

Beverages: This level of fasting is for those that are able and willing to go without solid food but will take in fruit juices, broth and beverages of various kinds from sunup (6 AM) to sundown (6 PM). During these 12 hours, the focus is to draw close to God while enduring a time of purposeful sacrifice through reading scripture, praying, and denying oneself of specific nourishment and entertainment.

Concessions: This method of fasting is for those that want to consecrate despite their need for meals or other nourishment due to health issues or other concerns. Food and beverages are acceptable to maintain consistency with doctor’s recommendations, food needs with medication and or diet.  During the 12 hours from sunup (6 AM) to sundown (6 PM), the focus is to draw close to God while enduring a time of purposeful sacrifice through reading scripture, praying, and denying oneself of specific entertainment.

benefits to fasting that you should know

Benefit One

  • Fasting and prayer can restore the Lord as your "first love" and will result in a more intimate relationship with Christ. And what's more, fasting is a Biblical way to truly humble yourself in the sight of God (Psalm 35:13; Ezra 8:21). Consider what King David said, "I humble myself through fasting."

Benefit  Two

  • Fasting enables the Holy Spirit to reveal one's true spiritual condition,  resulting in brokenness, repentance, and a transformed life. You can count on the Holy Spirit to go to work. He will awaken the Word of God in your heart, and His truth will become more meaningful to you.

Benefit Three

  • Fasting can result in a dynamic personal revival in your life - and make you a source of refreshing to others. When you fast, you will find a brand-new humility coming from your spirit to God. You will discover more time to pray and seek God's face. And as He leads you to recognize and repent of unconfessed sin, you will experience extraordinary blessings from Him.

Benefit Four  

  • Fasting can transform your prayer life into a richer and more personal experience. Prayer is a practice every believer should acquaint themselves with. It was one of  the things the disciples of Christ expressed real interest in. Jesus' followers understood the power and  peace that came with communing with God. So, they ask him an important favor: "Teach us how to pray."

Common Questions & Thoughts

Below are the answer to other common questions people
often have when they are fasting.

Is there something  else I should do?

Accompany your fasting with daily praying and reading of God's word.  At the end of each day and 7-day segment, write down three things from the scripture that speaks to your heart that will transform your life. Meditate on these scriptures daily and at the end of the week. Repeat the process for the entire 21 days.

Are there scriptures I should give my focus?

Adding Bible reading is always a good addition to your fast regiment. Add to your reading relevant scriptures, which complement the areas in which you seek growth or knowledge. Meditate, pray and confess success over the areas.  You can also add books and other materials that will can help enhance your knowledge and spiritual intimacy with God.

Can we fast as  a family?

Although fasting is a solitary experience, you can always invite others to join you in your quest for closer communion with God through it. A strong family is one that prays, declares God's word over its members, and fasts together. So, by all means, go for it! Inviting your loved ones to join you during this time of spiritual growth is a good idea.

I've never fast before - What do I do if I get hungry?

Remember that God is with you. Ask him to lead and guide you. Be led by his Spirit. He will show you what to do and give you His peace in the process. The goal for this 21 day fast is that you would experience a new intimacy in your relationship with God. As you prepare to begin, we encourage you to prepare your heart spiritually. The foundation for fasting and prayer is repentance.

Is there a wrong way to fast?

While you are fasting  your friends or family members may question why you are doing what you are doing. They may even suggest a methodology that they believe is more appropriate or even Biblical. Again, it is important to mention that there is nothing inherently spiritual about one fast as opposed to another. The point of fasting is to abstain from one thing to gain another.  Ultimately your goal is to make yourself available to God that you may grow closer to him. 

How can I become a Christian

REPENT: to repent means to turn around, to go in a new direction. [Acts 2:38]
BELIEVE: What is it that we must believe? We are to believe Christ rose again from the dead and is alive today. [John 1:12]
CONFESS: With the mouth confession is made unto salvation. What is it that we say? We must say what we believe—that Jesus is our Savior. We must say what the Bible says about us—that God is our Father and we have become His children. [Romans 10:9]