Monday, December 5, 2011

Fasting...what exactly is it?

Let me start first with what fasting is not. It is not:

  • a diet for losing weight
  • a way to back God into a corner to make him give you what you want
  • something that will make you more holy than someone else
  • something to do for show
  • something only religious fanatics do
  • unhealthy
  • something you do to prove a point like a hunger strike

OK, so what is it? My personal definition of fasting is this: restricting myself from enjoying something so that I may instead focus on God. It works for me because every time I feel hungry it reminds me to pray. For me it is an act of worship and an offering of myself to God. 

Fasting can be total or partial and can be done in many ways. I'll be posting about that soon. Let me just say here that the most important element of fasting is prayer. PRAYER. I like to think of fasting as moving into a attitude of continuous praying: 1 Thessalonians 5:17 - "Pray continually."

Without prayer fasting is nothing more than starving yourself. 

Something about the spiritual discipline of fasting makes me continually aware of the presence of God in my life and I find myself quicker to turn to him in times of stress or trouble, but more than that, I find myself keeping a running conversation with him that is truly amazing.

Remember as you prayerfully consider fasting, it is meant to deepen your relationship with God. It should not harm you or make you sick. If you have health problems, talk to your doctor about a healthy way to incorporate fasting into your lifestyle. Making yourself sick and neglecting your health does not honor God. In fact it could be seen as poor stewardship of the gift he's given you. Be prayerful and sensible. One does not negate the other. 

If you are considering joining this fast begin keeping a journal. Write down your thoughts and questions, scriptures and the things you would like to know. Research, read, and talk to others who have fasted. 

Check out the page tabs at the top of the blog for resources and prayer requests. 

I hope you will decide to join us. It will truly be life-changing. Let me hear your thoughts. Post a comment below. 

I am praying for you. 


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