Fasting and Prayer
Prayer gatherings in the sanctuary every Monday at 6:30 PM to 7:30 pm.
Choose the following links to download an example of prayers for men and women.
In the Bible, fasting is the discipline of going without food for a period of time for the purpose of focusing on God. The idea is to move away from the temporal and fleshly concerns and focus on the spiritual, in particular on drawing close to God and seeking His will. Fasting is accompanied by prayer and gives prayer intensity and greater focus.
The first and primary purpose of fasting is always to seek God. Specifically, we seek Him for repentance. It is important to remember that our fasting is not the purpose of “paying for sin.” Jesus did that on the cross and no “sacrifice” on our part can pay for sin.
We seek Him for strength in abiding with Christ. We seek Him for guidance in important decisions.
We seek Him for preparation for ministry. We seek Him to add strength and intensity and bring answers to our prayers. Sometimes fasting is absolutely necessary in addition to praying.
How should we fast?
The length of time and restrictiveness vary. Some fast one meal, some one day, some longer. Some drink only water, some juice and water-just ask the Lord to show you the details. It is a good idea to take times you would normally be eating meals and use those times to pray. Also, any hunger pangs you might feel throughout the day can serve as reminders to pray.
Fasting should be done sincerely and not for show, as Jesus warns in Matthew 6:16. Fasting is the humbling of the soul (Psalm 35:13), which God sees in secret, and will reward. We must remember the purpose is not for selfish motives, but to humble ourselves before God for the purpose of drawing near to Him.
Health Concerns: If you have health concerns, such as diabetes or pregnancy, your ability to fast may be restricted. Realize there are various sorts of fasts.
TIPS FOR FASTING
Fasting is the voluntary abstaining from food and drink for a limited period of time for moral or religious reasons. You can also fast other things such as things that occupy your time and energy. You can fast anything that holds a special place in your life. There are many ways to fast; the bottom line is to spend quality time with the Lord, with your body in subjection.
• Fasting is not starving. It is not a hunger strike.
• Enter into fasting with positive faith (the right motive).
• Stay in a spirit of prayer during the fast.
• Stay in the Word while fasting (“faith comes by hearing”).
• Write down specific needs that you hope will be accomplished in your life.
• Don’t wait for an emergency to fast. Fasting prepares you for the time of emergency!
• If you are not accustomed to fasting, begin with a short fast (one or two meals) then proceed to longer periods.
• Come off your fast gradually. A heavy meal after a fast can make you sick.
• Use wisdom. If you are on medication or have a disease such as diabetes, seek medical advice before a prolonged fast.
• It is advisable to begin drinking water while fasting; this is left to the discretion of the person.