WHAT IS FASTING? WHY FAST?

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2 In Matthew, chapter 6, Jesus began to teach his disciples the secrets of the Kingdom when you pray when you fast when you give These practices were to be done in secret, in private, not to be seen by others. The secrets of prayer & fasting may seem very simple or elementary, but when these practices have been implemented, have transformed many lives and produced radical followers of Jesus. May you not only understand these secrets, but begin to practice them, so that Jesus may transform your life as well. WHAT IS FASTING? Fasting is the practice of refraining from something natural to receive something spiritual. Fasting can be abstaining from food (cutting out 1-2 meals/ day, eating only vegetables & water, etc.), media (TV, internet, social media, etc.), entertainment, or activities to focus more on Jesus. Primarily, Biblical fasting involves giving up specific foods for a certain predetermined time frame. The time typically allotted to food preparation and consumption should instead be focused on prayer, worship or meditation on Scripture. When you fast, you are giving God more space in your life for Him to speak clearer to you. WHY FAST? Fasting is a way of consecrating our minds and bodies to God. Jesus also explained that certain breakthroughs require fasting and prayer (see Matthew 17:17-21). This spiritual discipline is found throughout Scripture and is a way of submitting to God so that we may look more like Him.

3 Fast Because You Desire To: 1. To know God more intimately. 2. To hear from God regarding a need. 3. To receive power from God for service. 4. To seek spiritual breakthrough. WHAT IS A CORPORATE FAST? A corporate fast is simply a leader s call to a specific group to fast together. This does not imply that all individuals are fasting in the same way, but simply that they are all fasting during the same time frame and praying together for the same purposes. WHAT IF I CANNOT MEDICALLY FAST FOOD? Please check with your healthcare provider before fasting. Fasting is never about food, instead it is all about your focus. If you cannot safely fast food, consider choosing something else that would be difficult for you to give up. If it matters to you, it matters to God. WHAT ARE SOME COMMON BIBLICAL FASTS? Full Fast Drink only liquids (includes broths and juices). (Matthew 4:1-4) Daniel Fast Eat no meat, no sweets and no breads. Drink water and juice. Eat fruits and vegetables. (Daniel 10:3) Partial Fast A partial fast is from 6:00 am to 3:00 pm or from sun up to sundown. You can select from three types of fasting a Full Fast, Daniel Fast or give up at least one item of food.

4 O how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day. Your commandments make me wiser than my enemies, for they are ever mine. Psalm 119:97-98 Meditation is a prayer tool where you take a verse in Scripture and repeat it over and over again. As you repeat it, ask God to give you understanding and revelation of what it means. The longer that you stay on a verse, the more you will begin to realize what the Lord is speaking to you through it! An easy way to meditate is to us the acronym R-W-S-S-P: Read it, write it, say it, sing it and pray it. READ IT Read the one verse several times through. Look for key phrases or words. Focus on what you read and what it may mean in its context. Think of other ways to say the words. Notice which words may be emphasized and how that affects the meaning of the verse. WRITE IT Write the verse exactly as it is written one time. Then, close your Bible and set it aside. You don t want another verse pulling your attention away from this one. You may also want to write out smaller phrases or specific words to help you focus. Write the phrase over and over again in your meditation. Writing opens something that reading doesn t always open in our understanding. The written Word is powerful, and it is a profound, yet simple truth that we have the joy, right, privilege, and opportunity to do. SAY IT Now, begin to say the verse or phrase out loud. Say it loud enough that your ears can hear it. Remember, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. Most things that you believe are things that you have heard over and over again. As you repeat the verse of the phrase, certain words will leap out at you. These words should be repeated over and over again. As you continue to say the verse, write any insights, thoughts or revelations you receive.

5 SING IT Take your isolated phrase and sing it over and over again. When we sing, our voices function in a distinct way from any other musical instrument, as only our voice can carry both a flow of thoughts and a melody at the same time. This combining of thought and music is both a high calling and a privilege! Singing is a means to unlocking our heart, as it impacts our spirit, soul, and body in a dynamic way. God has ordained our singing to Him has the ability to move His heart as well! As you sing, continue to write out what you sense and perceive. PRAY IT Finally, pray out the Scripture or phrase in your own words to God. If the phrase is a truth or promise, pray for God to help you believe! If the phrase is inviting faith for you to walk it out, then ask God to help you live out the verse. Prayer is our divine means of communion with God. By praying the Scripture, you will develop foundational language to grow in communion with Him, and also align your prayers according to His perfect will. As you pray, write down any further thoughts, insights, or areas you wish to pursue in future times of prayer. ADDITIONAL REFERENCES: Fasting Matthew 6:16-18, Matthew 9:14-15, Luke 18:9-14 Prayer and Reading of the Word 1 Samuel 1:6-8, 17-18, Nehemiah 1:4, Daniel 9:3, 20, Joel 2:12, Luke 2:37, Acts 10:30, Acts 13:2 Corporate Fasting 1 Samuel 7:5-6, Ezra 8:21-23, Nehemiah 9:1-3, Joel 2:15-16, Jonah 3:5-10, Acts 27:33-37 ADDITIONAL RESOURCES: Secrets of the Secret Place by Bob Sorge Experiencing the Depths of Jesus Christ by Jeanne Guyon 100 Days in the Secret Place by Gene Edwards Passion for Jesus by Mike Bickle Prayer by Hans Urs von Balthasar The Attributes of God by AW Pink Fire Within and Evidential Power of Beauty by Fr. Thomas Dubay Bridal Intercession and Come to Papa by Gary Wiens

6 READ IT, WRITE IT, SAY IT, SING IT AND PRAY IT 1. Use this large section for your meditation writing Meditation Verse: 2. Write the verse here exactly as it is written in your Bible. Revelation: 3. Write down an isolated portion of the verse. 4. As you use the R-W-S-S-P technique, write out any thoughts, insights, visions, or prayers that become relevant to God and Tasks: 5. Use this section to write down anything that can be considered a distraction. Write down both good and bad thoughts and ideas. Whether you are trying to remember for later or trying to get negative thoughts out of your head, writing things down causes you mind to forget for the moment, and this allows you to focus back on meditation. 6. Pursuits: Write out any other verses and themes to pursue later in this section.

7 READ IT, WRITE IT, SAY IT, SING IT AND PRAY IT Meditation Verse: Psalm 24:1, The earth is the Lord s, and all its fullness, the world and those who dwell therein. Revelation: the earth is the Lord s All of creation is Yours, and I am bound to this One to whom I belong. Its all about You, Jesus. It all belongs to You. And since it s Yours, You have the best plan for this earth. It all belongs to You everything, Lord. and all its fullness You gave the earth fullness? Earth was meant to look like heaven? Since it all belongs to You, and You are in control, what part do I play? Father, you the God of heaven and earth. Lord, help me to walk with You and partner with You. Help me to know Your plans for ME. Help me to cling to You today! Tasks: 5. Clean out car Do laundry Go grocery shopping 6. Pursuits: Reread the accounts of creation in Genesis Cross-reference this verse and search for verses on creation

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