How to fast

(This is a follow up on my note: The purpose of fasting)

There are no hard and fast rules about fasting. We need to keep in mind that the purpose of fasting is to wear the flesh down so that the spirit can become more sensitive. It is also important that during the fast, apart from abstaining from food you would also abstain from normal pleasures of life such as TV, shopping and other things that distract us from God. It is a time of focus and drawing closer to Jesus. Fasting without praying is a waste of time. Christians should in any case not watch TV.

A fast can be any duration, from half day to 40 days without food, just water. The longer the fast the greater the impact on the body. Do not expect to feel more “spiritual” as you progress through the fast. Fasting gets tougher the longer you continue. It is better to start with shorter fasts and stay the planned fast than to plan long fasts and interrupt before you finish. That leads to a sense of failure.

The first three days are normally tough. You will experience aches and pains and headaches as your body adapts to the starvation. Drink some water but not too much as you will just wash out your system. After three days the hunger pains go away and the pains in the joints also go away. Your breath will also be not good even though you do brush you teeth.

It is important to concentrate on Jesus. Take time praying, meditating and waiting on the Lord. Stay away from books and reading. Rather take a journal. Spend time waiting on Jesus. It should be a time of getting closer to Him. Ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you. He will put things in your mind. Write it down because you will forget it. You might have disturbed sleep pattern.  If you wake up, get up and pray. Wait on the Lord.

You will also be attacked by the devil. All kinds of disturbances. If possible have as little contact with other people and make up your mind beforehand not to attend family functions. Keep yourself to the Lord and stay busy with Jesus. You might have dreams and temptations in the dreams also. Resist the devil and keep your mind on Jesus. Remove temptations from you and make sure you spend time with Jesus. The more outside influences you allow the more difficult it will be to focus on Jesus and stay on the fast.

A fast is about becoming spiritually alert. Jesus is always with us. God is Spirit and He will never leave us. We are just not tuned in and aware of Him.  The more we weaken the flesh the more spiritually awake we become. Also for attacks from the devil because Satan and demons are also spirit. It is important to pray all the time and stay focused on Jesus. Jesus will reveal Himself to you but you need to be patient and wait on Him.

If you have been on a long fast do not start on heavy solids when starting to eat again. Use liquids for the first day or two. Then gradually go back to normal. Do not over eat. Rather have smaller portions more often. If you go more than 20 days be very careful. You need to get your intestines going again. Rich heavy foods must not be taken. Rather take soup for a day or two until your functions return to normal.
 
Fasting is about Jesus, getting more focused, removing obstacles, repenting getting purified. It is not pleasant but yields fruit of godliness if we go about it with the right attitude. Do not think you can go on a fast to manipulate God. Fasting is humbling before almighty God to get into his perfect will.
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About Jan Boshoff - finalcall07

A bond servant of Jesus Christ
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