““Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” Mt. 6:16-18
“Then they said to Him, “Why do the disciples of John fast often and make prayers, and likewise those of the Pharisees, but Yours eat and drink?”
And He said to them, “Can you make the friends of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them; then they will fast in those days.”” Luke 5:33-35
Want to get closer to the Lord than you’ve ever been? Want to know His will more than you’ve ever known it? One day I realized the Lord had given me a stunningly powerful and beautiful blessing that when He first gave it to me I had seen as anything but a blessing!
Fasting. Now due to a long-time history with an eating disorder coupled with a blood sugar issue combined with the fact when I tried fasting all food even as simply as skipping a meal, I found fasting for me was a disaster. I would physically and mentally feel unwell to the point I could not focus on the Lord let alone anything and found myself more distracted and virtually lightheaded than anything else. Then I discovered the fasting that works best for me.
I seek the Lord as to when to fast, I seek the Lord as to what to fast, and I seek the Lord during the fast, and I fast for as short or as long as He desires. The results have been incredible. I have drawn closer and closer to the Lord, and I have heard Him more and more clearly, and discovered His will in various matters in a way I couldn’t without the fasting.
Let me give you an example. I’m struggling to hear the Lord on a certain matter. Like where and when to go next now that I’m out on the road full-time for Him and ministry. I seek Him. I sense it’s time for a fast. I let Him dictate the amount of time. More recently, it’s been 40-day fasts. Oh, how I resisted them at first! Now, I get excited. I let Him speak to my heart what to fast. It’s usually something I LOVE and something that when I let go gives me more time and ability and focus to draw closer to Him and to best hear Him.
Like 40 days of no boxed cereals since cereal is one of my all-time favorite foods and I can eat bowls and bowls daily! Or no internet after 6 pm because I could be on the Internet virtually forever and it can be a huge distraction from God and exhaust me if I’m not careful. Like 40 days of no chocolate. Yikes! I’ve just fallen in love with chocolate after about 20 years of having little interest in it. Or 40 days of no muffins. Yes, the kind with tons of fat and tons of sugar and tons of YUM. Then, for those 40 days, I make a conscious effort to seek, wait on, hear, write down what I hear if I am led, and obey the Lord concerning the issues I felt led to fast to hear from the Lord about.
The Bible is filled with scriptures on fasting in both the Old Testament and the New Testament and also includes fasting for repentance! I am NOT an expert in fasting. I wish I were someone who could fast food the way some do. But I am not concerned with what others do in this regard. I am concerned with being vigilant in practicing what to me has become in my heart, eyes, and experience, a beautiful blessing.
An awesome, albeit sometimes hard, very hard, opportunity to draw closer to Jesus and to have His Spirit speak into my ears and right down into my heart His desires for my life that I might live the very best I can to bring Him love, joy, pleasure, praise, honor, and glory, AMEN!
Tried fasting? Please seek the Lord devotedly, dig deep and diligently into His Word, seek the counsel of strong Christ followers who can share their fasting experience, and partake if the Lord shall so lead you in this beautiful blessing – all for His glory, hallelujah, AMEN, AMEN, and AMEN!