What’s your favorite thing to do?
What’s your favorite thing to eat?
What’s your favorite entertainment?
All of these things may take the most attention in your life from time to time but there are a time and place for it. Are you willing to give them up for a time to grow closer to the Lord? One way to do this is through fasting.
Fasting is the willing abstinence or reduction from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time. Fasting and prayer are very important in a relationship with God. Fasting is living a lifestyle of prayer, choosing God over your flesh, and allowing God to increase in your life as you decrease your fleshly wants. It’s like working a muscle. The more you do it, the stronger you become. I have found that when you fast, you are taking action through sacrifice. Making a conscious decision to choose God first is a wonderful thing always and fasting and prayer help you to do that.
40 days, 21 days, 10 days, 3 days. There is no set time of fasting as it is personal. The Bible gives us several examples of fasting to include the 40 days of fasting in the wilderness with Jesus or 10/ 21 days when Daniel fasted the delicacies of the kingdom or 3 days of fasting with Paul. Fasting can be done for prayer, peace, wisdom, direction and more. I view fasting as personal devotion to Christ.
“For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry.” Matthew 4:2 NLT
Even though Jesus was physically hungry, he knew that his spirit was stronger and could resist all temptation when he focused on the Lord. We can do this too.
The book of Daniel reveals that fasting not only makes you stronger spiritually but also physically.
““Please test us for ten days on a diet of vegetables and water,” Daniel said. “At the end of the ten days, see how we look compared to the other young men who are eating the king’s food. Then make your decision in light of what you see.”Daniel 1:12-13
All that time I had eaten no rich food. No meat or wine crossed my lips, and I used no fragrant lotions until those three weeks had passed.“Daniel 10:3
But fasting does not have to include food only, you can fast from things that are taking more of your attention: like social media, television, entertainment, different types of food, different relationships, certain types of music and many other different things. I have fasted from social media from time to time and it has been refreshing to not always have to scroll and be focused on everything else in the world. I was able to be productive in different areas. I was reminded that it is important to remember that having more time with God is a time of breakthrough in all areas of our lives.
How long and what ways to fast from as you grow closer to God?
M. Smitty 😇