Prayer and Fasting
Prayer and fasting
Didn’t that go out of style a long time ago? That is so old testament, people just do not do that anymore.
Fasting is just as relevant today as it was in the past and it can be a powerful tool in your prayer arsenal. It is a way that we can turn our focus to God and know that he will provide for you. Surrendering our desires to strengthen our relationship with God. It also allows us to demonstrate humility before God. Sometimes we can get caught up in ourselves and we need to take ourselves down a notch or two, since we are very small compared to Gods greatness. When we are humble before the Lord the Holy Sprit is free to work in us.
Many people also use a fast to examine their conscience. Look to places where sin may be dragging them down. Asking the lord for forgiveness and guidance that we may follow him freely. Surrender to Jesus that you may become a powerful tool to proclaim his love through your actions and your words.
Fasting is mentioned several times in the Bible. “He was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he neither ate bread nor drank water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the ten commandments. (Exodus 34:28, NRSV)”. Forty days and nights Moses was sustained solely through Gods providence while he received the law that would guide his people.
When you have decided that you what to give fasting a try remember the words of Jesus. “And whenever you fast, do not look dismal, like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces so as to show others that they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that your fasting may be seen not by others but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you. (Matthew 6:16 – 18, NRSV)”. We do not need to broadcast to everyone that we are fasting. Your choice in fasting is between you and God. No one needs to know, and no one should be able to tell by your attitude or appearance.
Do not be afraid if you think that it is to large of a commitment for you. You do not have to be in constant prayer and meditation when you are fasting. Just take some time out during the day to spend with the Lord. During the rest of the day continue to do your regular work or chores.
Anyone can fast for their faith. Try to skip a meal and spend the time that you would have used in preparing the meal and in eating in prayer and reading the scriptures. I was part of a group many years ago. What we would do was to fast during breakfast and lunch and then have a bible study and go out for a community meal afterwards. I found this to be extremely rewarding since the fasting would help to focus us on the word of God and the meal would be a great time for fellowship.
Prayer and fasting are not a quick ticket to have our prayers answered. We must pray and fast so that his plan will come to fruition. Are you praying for something that will honor and glorify God? Always ask for Gods wisdom that you are praying so that you may always seek to glorify him. “ If any of you is lacking in wisdom, ask God, who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly, and it will be given you. (James 1: 5, NRSV)
Some people also chose to give up other worldly things during their fast such as Television, tea or coffee, computer games or social media. If you are going to do this remember to give up something that is difficult for you to go without. It needs to be a sacrifice.
If you are pregnant or have other medical conditions, please check with your doctor before taking part in any fasting. You do not want to sacrifice your health for the sake of fasting. If you have any concerns at all, please consult your doctor first. Always be responsible when you are fasting, if you are not feeling well please stop. Also, do not try to attempt fasting for a long period of time since it can cause medical problems.
Always remember to drink water during your fast you can become dehydrated very quickly especially during the summer heat. IF you have fasted for more than a day remember to start eating slowly. Have a few crackers to start, if that sits with you then have a little it of soup or some salad. This is so you do not shock your system.
I pray that your faith in Christ will continue to grow each day and that you will find strength in his words. Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to read my blog. If you would like me to cover a special topic in the future, please feel free to reach out to me by leaving a comment below or on Twitter @OurFaithBlog
Peace of Christ