“While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, ‘Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.’ So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.” Acts 13:2-3 (NIV)
Biblical fasting is not a hunger strike between you and God. It can be easy to think of fasting as a way to add an extra oomph to your prayers. But biblical fasting isn’t so much about how God responds to your prayers: it’s more about how you bring your prayers to Him.
“God opposes the proud, but shows favor to the humble” (1 Peter 5:5, NIV; see 2 Samuel 22:28). Fasting is a means of humbling ourselves before God. In the Old Testament, fasting was often accompanied by other signs of humility and brokenness, such as weeping, mourning, and lamenting, as well as wearing sackcloth and sitting in ashes.
It’s important to understand that fasting is not a way to get a better response to prayer. Rather, true fasting is a means of fostering a better (humbler) approach to prayer.
benefits of fasting
1. Helps us overcome the calamities of life.
Fasting is the Biblical way to humble ourselves (Psalm 35:13; 69:10). Esther fasted when faced with danger (Esther 4:16). Ezra fasted for protection (Ezra 8:21-28). Jehoshaphat fasted in the time of the invasion of the confederated armies of Canaanites and Syrians (2 Chronicles 20:3).
2. Renews our connection with God.
Jesus said that His disciples will fast when He is gone (Mark 2:20). When we fast, we get our hunger back for the presence of God.
3. Empowers us to fulfill God’s calling in our life.
Most of the people in the OT fasted in a crisis; Jesus fasted for His calling. We should not fast only during problems, but also for our purpose. Anna was fasting for the coming of the redemption of Israel. (Luke 2:37).
4. Defeats the devil.
Once, the disciples of Jesus could not cast out a demon. Jesus said, This kind does not leave, but by prayer and fasting (Matthew 17:21). Fasting helps to break the bonds of wickedness, undo heavy burdens, and empower us to break every yoke (Isaiah 58:6).
the 3 types of fasts
A Normal Fast – means to abstain from all food
A Partial Fast – means to eliminate certain foods or specific meals
A “Juice” Fast – means to drink only fruit or vegetable juices during meal times
Note: You should always drink water when fasting.
50 Day Transformation
Starting October 1st we are beginning a 50 DAY TRANSFORMATION! During this time we are asking EVERY MEMBER of our congregation to CHOOSE 1 DAY to FAST and PRAY to prepare their hearts for what God is going to do in and through you and at Western Heritage Church!