What is fasting?
Fasting is simply defined as going without food for a period of time, either entirely or partially. It is a spiritual discipline that has many benefits.
Please note: If you have any health issues (including diabetes and stomach ulcers) please be sure to contact your GP or health professional for advice before committing to any fast, including the Daniel, partial or liquid fasts.
Why would anyone starve themselves?
Fasting is a spiritual discipline that has been out of vogue in many churches in the Western world for over a century. So why do we take the time to fast?
We are a church that seeks to not just live a Christian lifestyle, but see our lives, our family, friends, neighbours and co-workers affected by the life and power of Jesus.
We want to become the kind of church God has in mind, the kind of church we read about in the New Testament where times of fasting resulted in a channel of God’s power. Fasting disciplines a person’s spiritual appetite, aligns their soul with the will of God and opens a channel of God’s life and power that perhaps no other activity can.
We want to build momentum, we want to see the Lord move not just in each one of our lives, but the lives of every person that we have the opportunity to influence.
Throughout the Old Testament we see people fasting for a variety of reasons:
- For mourning (Nehemiah 1:4, 1 Samuel 31:13)
- For repentance (1 Samuel 6, Nehemiah 9:1, Jonah 3:5)
- To hear from God (Ezra 8:21)
- To provoke God to move on their behalf (2 Chronicles 20:3, Esther 4:16, Daniel 9:3)
- To petition God (Acts 10:30) To seek the mind of God (Acts 13:2)
- To prepare for ministry (Matthew 4:2, Acts 13:3)
- For spiritual power (Matthew 17:21)
What are the benefits of fasting?
Fasting has many benefits but it’s not a way to earn God’s blessing, or ‘get’ God to answer our prayers. We need to be obedient, humble and surrender to God’s will and purposes in every situation.
- Fasting brings direction from God (Acts 10:30, Acts 13:2-3, Judges 20:26)
- Fasting brings the power of the Spirit (Luke 4:14)
- Fasting brings answers to prayer (Esther 4:16, Nehemiah 1:4)
- Fasting brings action from God (2 Chronicles 20:20-21)
- Fasting brings a spiritual breakthrough (Matthew 17:21)
- Fasting deepens humility (Ezra 8:21, 1 Peter 5:6)
As you begin your fast, focus on the souls of those close to you who need salvation. Do not be discouraged but persistent. Keep praying!
Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Hebrews 12:3)
Fast and pray for:
- God’s grace and favour on your life.
- His hedge of protection on your future.
- Supernatural wisdom and discernment in your life.
- Open windows over your life and family.
- New discipline on handling money.
- Breakthrough in work, career and vocation. God’s hand on your marriage, family and friends.
- An abundance of souls through your own life.
- Obedience in giving your tithe, offerings and first fruits.
- Financial strongholds to be removed.
- Faith to be a faithful giver in all times and seasons.
- God’s grace over your children and future.
- Employment favour.
- Freedom from greed and poor choices.
My Prayer for you in 2017
1. He will rescue you
For he rescues you from every trap and protects you from the fatal plague. He will shield you with his wings! They will shelter you. His faithful promises are your armor. (Psalm 91:3-4, TLB)
2. No fear in your life
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day. (Psalm 91:5, MEV)
3. No sickness
Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. (Psalm 91:6, NLT)
4. No leaking money
You have planted much, but gather little. You eat, but there is not enough to fill you. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothing, but no one is warm enough. You earn money, but put it into a bag with holes. (Haggai 1:6, NLV)
5. He will reach everyone you pray for
See, the Lord’s hand is not so short that it cannot save, and His ear is not closed that it cannot hear. (Isaiah 59:1, NLV)
6. God will expand the work of your hands
Make your tent bigger. Spread out the curtains of your home, and do not hold back. Make your ropes longer and your tie-downs stronger. (Isaiah 54:2, NLV)
7. The Lord will fight your battles
He said, “Listen, all you people of Judah and Jerusalem! Listen, King Jehoshaphat! This is what the Lord says: Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s. (2 Chronicles 20:15, NLT)