Basics of Fasting
Whether you are new to fasting or just need a refresher, here are a few essentials to help you get started.
Jesus spoke of fasting as a normal part of life for child of God. Every time Jesus spoke of fasting it was in the context of “when” you fast, not if you fast. There a many physical or medical proofs to the benefit of fasting. There are even greater spiritual benefits. In fact, the spiritual benefits derived from fasting will create even greater positive effects in the physical and emotional realms as well.
What is Fasting?
Biblical examples of fasting have mostly to do with refraining from foods or drink. However, fasting is a spiritual discipline, like prayer or worship. In that, there is room for personal expression and personality. Fasting is an action we take to show honour to God and it is a process God uses to grow and mature us in our relationship with Him. In simplest definition fasting is simply to refrain from doing one thing in order to focus our attention toward another thing.
How do I Fast?
Begin by defining your motivation. Are you fasting to “be part of the crowd”, or to lose weight, or to seek God? I would suggest that all of the above have some level of merit. As mentioned, fasting has lots of benefits in lots of areas. You must be clear on your reason for fasting. Next, ask God to lead you in committing to a plan. You must decide before hand what you are going to fast and for how long. Without deciding beforehand it will be too easy to “give in” in a weaker moment during the fast. Finally, just do it. Don’t over think it. It is not complicated and there are really no “rules” around it. Remember, we are in a relationship with Jesus. Fasting is something relational between you and God, like a walk. It is not a legal process of forms and identification and lawyers and such.