Fasting is abstaining from food and drinks, this post is why and how to fast according to God.
Fasting is more than depriving yourself of food, If we do not fast with the right intentions, we will not have the expected results. For example, if you see fasting as a way of begging God to fulfill your desires, you are wrong. God is not impressed with your sacrifices; what He wants is your heart, your obedience (1 Samuel 15:22). Your fasting will not force God to fulfill your desires. If you decide to deprive yourself of food to show God how desperate you are to have what you want, it is nothing but a hunger strike, and God does not allow Himself to be manipulated.
Why do we do fasting for God?
The reason we fast is to give us more time to seek the face of God. If you choose to skip meals, but don’t replace that time with prayer, you are just dieting. All it will produce is weight loss! But you won’t get any spiritual results.
Fasting on food allows you to make the analogy between your physical hunger and the hunger of your mind. This is partly why food fasting is so popular. Also, since we usually spend a good half hour eating a meal, that’s a good amount of time to give to God.
But you can also fast on things other than food. You can choose to sacrifice occupations to which you devote time. For example, you can fast from television, and replace that time by reading your Word. Or, you can fast from your social media: every minute you spend reading your friends’ messages, you can spend with God. Some people decide to fast for one hour of sleep. They decide to get up an hour earlier to have more time with their Lord.
Once you have chosen your fast, you must decide to do it with good intentions.
In Isaiah 58, God instructs His people to fast. We are not talking in this passage about fasting for a change in social status, but certain principles quoted here can teach us how to dispose of our hearts during our fast.
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“Untie the chains of wickedness, loosen the bonds of bondage, set the oppressed free” (v.6 KJV).
During your time with God (a time you have because you are fasting), take the opportunity to forgive, not hold grudges. It is a way to let go of those who have hurt us and to free our hearts from all spiritual pollution (bitterness, resentment, desire for revenge, sadness, etc.)
“And let every yoke be broken” (v.6 KJV).
Several times in the New Testament, especially in the epistle to the Romans, it is said that sin is slavery. Why not take time during your fast to ask God what sin should leave your life; what bad habit should be given up, what are these obstacles in your own life that prevent you from receiving divine blessings?
“Share your bread with the hungry…” (v.7 KJV).
You want to get married, have kids, a better job, that’s fine, but God saved you for more than that. During your time with God, take the opportunity to ask Him where He wants to use you. What service would He like you to work in? What’s your call? We are sometimes too focused on our desires. When we fast, it’s the perfect time to pause in our thoughts and put our priorities back in the right place.
When we fast in this way, taking this time to humble ourselves and to ask God to transform and guide us, our prayers will be answered. Here are the promises God gives to His people who fast in the right way:
“Then your light will break like the dawn” What could be more attractive than a Christian who shines with the radiance of God!
“Your Healing Will Sprout Quickly” What could be more attractive than a Christian who is emotionally healed!
“Your righteousness shall go before you, and the glory of the Lord shall follow you.” What could be more attractive than a Christian with a good reputation!
“Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; You will cry, and He will say, Here I am!…” Isn’t this what we all desire?
“The Eternal will always be your guide” We need His direction in our life and that in all areas.
“He will satisfy your soul in dry places” There are many dry times when we are Christians. What a privilege to have that promise then, right?
“And He will restore vigor to your limbs; you will be like a watered garden, like a spring whose waters never dry up.” Fasting also forces us to rest, because it is downtime. With this rest comes new strength, a new vigor, which will be useful in the face of painful or trying times.
(Isaiah 58.8-11 KJV)
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5 Reason why we Pray and Fast
Some feel that we waste our time and our lives praying and fasting, on the other hand, others want the whole world to know that they are fasting. That is not our aim.
Why we Pray and Fast
1. We pray and fast to express our helplessness without God (Heb. 4:16)
Prayerlessness is a subtle confession of arrogance
2. We pray and fast to express our dependence on God (2Chron. 20:12)
3. We pray and fast to express our confidence in His willingness to hear us and answer us (Ps. 65:2; 1John 5:14-15)
4. We pray (and fast) to connect Divine resources – wisdom, ability, and supplies (Phil. 4:19)
5. We pray (and fast) to strengthen and consolidate our relationship with our Maker (Matt. 6:9-10)
The strength of the relationship determines the solidity and guarantee of the request
The Outcome of Prayer and Fasting
1. Definite answers to prayers (Jer. 33:3)
2. Access to revelation and insight (Jer. 33:3; Isa. 58:6, 8)
3. Spiritual buoyancy, intensity, and vibrancy (Luke 9:29)
4. Spiritual authority and force (Matt. 17:21)
5. Spiritual vitality and strength (Isa. 58:8)
How do we pray and fast effectively?
1. Proceed with focus (Jam. 5:16)
2. Possess passion (Jam. 5:16)
3. Maintain clear conscience (Ps. 66:18)
Fasting can make all the difference, provided you do it for the right reasons and with the right dispositions of the heart.