Fasting with prayer can be extremely effective. For me fasting is the strongest weapon of the Christian's armoury, the most powerful. Jesus is the best role model for fasting and prayer. "And he fasted forty days and forty nights. And afterwards he was hungry." Matthew 4.2 That is a long fast. Moses and Elijah are also known to have gone without food for that time. All three are significant Bible figures.
Fast when called by the Holy Spirit or make it a weekly or monthly feature of the faith life."Is this not the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice,to undo the thongs of the yoke,to let the oppressed go free." Isaiah 58.6When I fast and prayer God answers in much more effective ways than when I simply pray. Fasting adds a potency. It can succeed when other forms of prayer have not. It might shake loose the oppression of others and free them from Satan's yoke. It can bring about justice in my family and the lives of those you pray for. During short fasts of a day or a few days and God can answer prayer marvellously. I can't recommend fasting enough.
Let me get one thing across. Fasting means not eating.There is another extreme version of fasting when no food or drink is taken. That is also highly effective. Esther, Mordecai and all the nearby Jews did that. It was a matter of life or death. If God overturned the situation, the Jews would survive, if not they would be slaughtered. She said to Mordecai, "go gather all the Jews to be found in Susa and hold a fast on my behalf, and neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. I and my maids will also fast as you do. Then I will go to the king, though it is against the law; and if I perish, I perish." Daniel 4:16,17. She took a risk and God answered that astonishingly in favour of the Jews enabling them to overturn the death threat against them and to gain the advantage over their enemies.
Another aid to effectual prayer is partial fasting. It means missing a meal or two in a day. It also gives more favour with God than when to simply eat three daily meals and go about praying.
Another way to be more effective in my prayer life is to eat a vegan diet. To be honest I like a balanced diet so I eat meat and vegetables as the norm, but when more strength is required in prayer I go vegan or vegetarian. It seems God encouraged man to eat plants and later approved eating everything. "God said, "See I have given you every green plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food." Genesis 1.29. Later God said to Noah "Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you; just as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything." Genesis 9.3 So it seems God encouraged a shift of diet in Noahs time.
God looks upon it as a humbling sacrifice to go vegan or vegetarian. I feel God honours both. Perhaps it is a simpler life and animal lives are not taken for you if you go vegan.
Daniel seemed to eat a vegan or vegetarian diet for three weeks as he sought God. With amazing results. "In those days I, Daniel, was mourning for three weeks. I ate no delicacies, no meat or wine entered my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, for the full three weeks." Daniel 10;2,3. Daniel was told that God heard his prayer the first day he humbled himself so it does help a lot in prayer to make sacrifices. Also Daniel got the insights he wanted from God remarkably.
Be sensible, cheerful, and hide the fact that you are fasting. No one except God needs to know. Jesus said "when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face that your fasting may not be seen by men but by your Father who is in heaven; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you." Matthew 6.17. I often feel less burdened and happier when I fast and sometimes physically stronger.
To God belongs all power, glory and thanks.
Michael Hume. Christian since 1987. Believe the Bible in original form is true, and in a daily personal relationship with Jesus. A freelance writer. Copyright belongs to author.
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