While most of us attribute fasting to simply be about giving up food, there are far greater benefits to a fast than controlling our wills to abstain from favorite foods for a set period of time.
When we choose to sacrifice what we would prefer to eat and put our desire for food behind our desire to seek God through prayer, God honors it. This reordering of our priorities draws us closer to God and Him closer to us. We become more attuned to His voice and His direction. This is the amazing benefit of a fast and why it is necessary for Christians to do!
As noted, a popular option for fasting is the Daniel Fast, which, pertains to eating mostly fruits and veggies. See more at http://daniel-fast.com/portfolio/foodlist/. Regardless of the type of Fast, the following are some suggestions for maximizing a fasting experience.
1. Focus more on your Source than on what you’re ‘giving up’.
– While hunger pangs (for food, or anything else from which you might fast) are normal, they should never be allowed to usurp the focus. Allow them to serve as a reminder of just how much you really need the Lord in every area of life.
2. Limit distractions.
– If fasting in order to hear from God, it’s a good idea to take inventory of other things in your life that may be distracting from that same goal. Some music, TV/film and even possibly relationships could be working against the goal and vying for your attention – seek God about what might be best to hold off from until after the fast. You might be surprised by what the Holy Spirit recommends.
– Just as sometimes we forget to listen for the Holy Spirit during prayer, we can also forget to listen during fasting. God is almost always speaking, but it’s usually our distractions that keep us from hearing. Now that you’re focused and positioned to hear, stay attentive. Part of the Holy Spirit’s job is to tell us things we don’t know; now’s the time to listen.
Enjoy the time. God’s faithful – eagerly expect for the Holy Spirit to reveal new things, and bring greater understanding in a variety of areas. Join us each week night from January 2 – January 13 at 7pm at either the Smithfield or Fall River campuses for a time of prayer.