King David said:. In your prayers, confess not only obvious sins, but less obvious ones as well. The sins of omission as well as the sins of commission experiences. Like physical breathing, Spiritual Breathing is a process of exhaling the impure and inhaling the pure. You exhale by confessing your sins immediately when you become aware of them, and you inhale by inviting the Holy Spirit to re-take control of your life. As an act of faith, trust Him to empower you.
During the fast, spiritual breathing—constant reliance on the Holy Spirit—will enable you to resist temptation, not only to sin but to abandon your fast. Although fasting is primarily a spiritual discipline, it begins in the physical realm. You should not fast without specific physical preparation. If you plan on fasting for several days, you will find it helpful to begin by eating smaller meals before you abstain altogether.
Cutting down on your meals a few days before you begin the fast will signal your mind, stomach, and appetite that less food is acceptable. Some health professionals suggest eating only raw foods for two days before starting a fast. I also recommend weaning yourself off caffeine and sugar products to ease your initial hunger or discomfort at the early stages of your fast. How long you fast, the kind of fast you undertake, and how you adjust your work schedule depends mostly on your occupation.
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Persons with office jobs, pastors, or homemakers may find it easier to continue their duties and fast for longer periods of time. In fact, on the basis of my personal experience, worldwide travels and the many letters, which I have received, I am confident that many, many thousands of pastors and lay men and women have already completed a day fast! Though there are many who engage in strenuous physical labor and have enjoyed their extended fast, if you are so engaged, you may wish to fast only one or more days of the week, limiting yourselves to partial fasting if you are so engaged.
Or you may look to weekends as the prime time to abstain from food. Remember, too, fasting during major holidays is not always a good idea. Families may be inconvenienced, and temptations to eat can be overwhelming. The first is physical. Throughout your fast, you may feel somewhat weaker than normal. During the first few days, you may feel tired and irritable. Lightening your workload and cutting down on strenuous exercise would be a very good idea to maintain your health and your morale. The second reason is spiritual.
Fasting is not just denying yourself food. It is exchanging the needs of the physical body for those of the spiritual.
While fasting, if you dissipate your energy on numerous errands or busy-work to the neglect of spending special time with God, you will starve both physically and spiritually. You will find yourself becoming discouraged and frustrated with your fast instead of being benefited and uplifted and blessed.
The more time you spend with God in fellowship, worship, and adoration of Him, and the more you read and meditate upon His Word, the greater your effectiveness will be in prayer and the more meaningful your fast will be. So I encourage you to arrange your schedule accordingly! Many people are reluctant to tell others that they are fasting so they will avoid the sin of the Pharisees: fasting just to gain recognition for themselves.
By isolating ourselves from the support of other Christians, we will be more susceptible to doubts and negative influences both human and demonic. We need the prayer shield of our Christian friends and family members to help us continue when we feel alone and when the enemy tempts us to give up Our Lord as he did Jesus Christ. Eventually, people will notice you are not eating. However, I have found that unless you see them daily, they do not consider your skipped meal much of a concern. If friends and family express concern for your health, ease their fears by telling them that you will stop fasting the moment you feel you are harming your body or if the Lord leads you to end your fast.
Fasting Unto God
There is usually no reason for telling strangers or casual acquaintances that you are fasting. If you do, they may subject you to a lot of questions that you may not want to answer. Arranging special time each day with God is absolutely crucial in attaining intimate communion with the Father. Read His Word and pray during what were mealtimes. Meditate on Him when you awake in the night. Sing praises to Him whenever you please.
Focus on your Heavenly Father and make every act one of praise and worship. As you enter this time of heightened spiritual devotion, be aware that Satan will do everything he can to pull you away from your prayer and Bible reading time. When you feel the enemy trying to discourage you, immediately go to God in prayer and ask Him to strengthen your resolve in the face of difficulties and temptations.
The enemy makes you a target because he knows that fasting is the most powerful of all Christian disciplines and that God may have something very special to show you as you wait upon Him and seek His face. Satan does not want you to grow in your faith, and will do anything from making you hungry and grumpy to bringing up trouble in your family or at work to stop you. Make prayer your shield against such attacks. My major reason for fasting is for personal revival, revival for our nation, for the world and for the fulfillment of the Great Commission.
But praying for our own needs and interceding for others are also important reasons to fast and pray. Bring your personal needs before the Lord, intercede for your loved ones, your friends, your church, your pastor, your community, your nation, and the world. By your prayers of humility, as you fast, you will help the Great Commission be fulfilled.
However, do not become so caught up in praying for yourself and others that you forget about simply reverencing and praising God. True spiritual fasting focuses on God. Center your total being on Him, your attitudes, your actions, your motives, desires, and words. This can only take place if God and His Holy Spirit are at the center of our attention. Confess your sins as the Holy Spirit brings them to your attention and continue to focus on God and God alone so that your prayers may be powerful and effective. A renewed closeness with God and a greater sensitivity to spiritual things are usually the results of a fast.
Many people who have successfully completed extended fasts tell of feeling a nearness to God that they have never before known, but others who have honestly sought His face report no particular outward results at all. For others, their fast was physically, emotionally, and spiritually grueling, but they knew they had been called by God to fast, and they completed the fast unto Him as an act of worship; God honored that commitment. Your motive in fasting must be to glorify God, not to have an emotional experience, and not to attain personal happiness.
When your motives are right, God will honor your seeking heart and bless your time with Him in a very special way. I know the prospect of going without food for an extended period of time may be of concern to some. But there are ways to ensure that your body is getting the nutrients it needs so you can remain safe and healthy during your fast.
For an extended fast, I recommend water and fruit and vegetable juices. The natural sugars in juices provide energy, and the taste and strength are motivational to continue your fast. Try to drink fresh juices, if possible. If you are beginning a juice fast, there are certain juices you may wish to avoid and certain ones that are especially beneficial. Because of their acid content, most nutritionists do not advise orange or tomato juice these are better tolerated if mixed with equal portions of water. The best juices are fresh carrot, grape, celery, apple, cabbage, or beet.
I usually dedicate a portion of my day fast to a special liquid formula, which I have found to be effective over many years. A few recipes and my comments are on this page, as well as a helpful schedule. The juice is available in frozen cans under the Welch label.
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Most knowledgeable nutritionists recommend:. Some nutritionists recommend warm broth, especially if you live in a colder climate. You may find their recipes helpful:.
You may find the following daily schedule helpful during your fast. I recommend you print it and keep it handy throughout your fast. I suggest that you do not drink milk because it is a pure food and therefore a violation of the fast. Any product containing protein or fat, such as milk or soy-based drinks, should be avoided. These products will restart the digestion cycle and you will again feel hunger pangs.
Moses fasted during the 40 days and 40 nights he was on Mount Sinai receiving the law from God Exodus King Jehoshaphat called for a fast in all Israel when they were about to be attacked by the Moabites and Ammonites 2 Chronicles In response to Jonah's preaching, the men of Nineveh fasted and put on sackcloth Jonah Prayer and fasting was often done in times of distress or trouble.
David fasted when he learned that Saul and Jonathan had been killed 2 Samuel Nehemiah had a time of prayer and fasting upon learning that Jerusalem was still in ruins Nehemiah Darius, the king of Persia, fasted all night after he was forced to put Daniel in the den of lions Daniel Prayer and fasting also occurs in the New Testament. Anna "worshipped night and day, fasting and praying" at the Temple Luke John the Baptist taught his disciples to fast Mark Jesus fasted for 40 days and 40 nights before His temptation by Satan Matthew The church of Antioch fasted Acts and sent Paul and Barnabas off on their first missionary journey Acts Paul and Barnabas spent time in prayer and fasting for the appointment of elders in the churches Acts Prayer and Fasting - Required or Recommended?
The Word of God does not specifically command believers to spend time in prayer and fasting. At the same time, prayer and fasting is definitely something we should be doing.
Far too often, though, the focus of prayer and fasting is on abstaining from food. Instead, the purpose of Christian fasting should be to take our eyes off the things of this world and focus our thoughts on God. Fasting should always be limited to a set time because not eating for extended periods can be damaging to the body.
Fasting is not a method of punishing our bodies and it is not be used as a "dieting method" either. We are not to spend time in prayer and fasting in order to lose weight, but rather to gain a deeper fellowship with God. Fasting as Unto the Lord by Marilyn Salmonson ,. Lloyd Bustard Foreword by. Empower Your Spirit You desire a closer walk with God. It empowers your spirit man, enhances your prayer life, and helps you focus on your Christian walk.
This comprehensive book by Marilyn Salmonson offers a wealth of information, incorporating scriptural guidelines for fasting with conte Empower Your Spirit You desire a closer walk with God. This comprehensive book by Marilyn Salmonson offers a wealth of information, incorporating scriptural guidelines for fasting with contemporary scientific knowledge on how to physically maximize your fast. Has fasting confused you in the past? Marilyn Salmonson shows the answers to these questions and more: What are the benefits of fasting?
What effect does fasting have on my physical body? How did God command us to fast? Why does God require fasting? How should I prepare for a fast?
Isaiah 58 NKJV - Fasting that Pleases God - “Cry - Bible Gateway
Let Fasting as unto the Lord take your relationship with God to the next level. Get A Copy. Paperback , 72 pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions 1. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.