Written by Lisa Davis
From Richard Foster‘s book Celebration of Discipline, we find that throughout scripture fasting refers to abstaining from food for spiritual purposes. Fasting helps us have a more intimate walk with God. It often reveals the inner attitudes of our heart along with revealing the things which control us. Fasting must be God initiated and SetGod ordained. Fasting is not so much focused on the abstaining from food as the feasting on the word of God.
In my own life, I once fasted for a day to pray about a moral issue in our nation and the church that I was burdened for. I thought I would be fasting to stand against something, but rather, became broken for those experiencing the difficulty and spent the time praying for them. It was very eye-opening for me. I guess I would say it revealed not only the inner intentions of my heart, but also the inner intentions and workings of God’s heart.
I often find myself feeling called to fast from eating lunch at school. I might have a prayer concern, and I’m desiring leading on how to intercede for my family or friends. I will take my little 1st grade kiddos down to lunch and return to my room to sit in the quiet and stillness and try to listen for God’s heart on an issue. After a few minutes, I often find myself feeling led on how to pray. Sometimes these concerns are about students at school, and I need wisdom regarding how to help them. Sometimes the concern is for someone I work with and our relationship. Other times this call to quiet comes from something I have studied in the morning during my quiet time. A particular scripture, statement, or even a word will stand out to me, and I know the Lord has more to show me about this. I will write down that scripture or point from my quiet time in my journal and use it as my focus during my lunchtime. I honestly think that this small sacrifice of food and time opens me up to hunger more for God. Just a small break in my normal schedule leaves me open to more divine interruptions in my day.
I think I am learning to not be as concerned with the length of time that I am fasting, but that I obey His voice when I feel led to pull away and seek His presence. I am truly looking forward to some more times like this. I want to learn to sit before Him and, at times, not ask or seek anything but His face. I want more times to sit in His presence and listen without any agenda or concerns.
Psalms 25:14 TPT says “There’s a private place reserved for the lovers of God, where they sit near Him and receive the revelation secrets of His promises.” Fasting food and changing my schedule leads me to this place.
Romans 12:1 TPT says “ I encourage you to surrender yourselves to God to be His sacred living sacrifices. And live in holiness, experiencing all that delights His heart. For this becomes your genuine expression of worship.“ Surrendering my schedule and my lunch has become one way I live out being a living sacrifice in my everyday life.
I would like to stress something we started with…fasting must be God initiated and God ordained. Trust Him to call you, work this into your life, and lead you. I encourage you to find this private place with the Lord and seek His face regarding fasting in your life. It will look different for each of us…maybe a one day fast, a three day fast, or maybe one meal a day. This time could be about a certain issue you feel burdened by, a concern for a family member or friend, or perhaps a hunger and thirst just to be in His presence and listen. Sometimes I use favorite song to quiet myself and sit before Him in worship and thanksgiving during these times. We serve a God who is creative and relational and who dearly loves you. So be open…and be ready to hear Him call you away to Himself.
Write this way: Set aside some time to fast and sit in God’s presence…be it one day or one meal. Change up your schedule and focus on a concern, a recent lesson or Scripture, or just sit quietly and see what happens…wait expectantly.
About the Author:
About the Author:
Lisa Davis is part of the Commonway body and loves to serve in women’s ministry. She has been married to Tom for 33 years. She enjoys teaching first grade at Royerton Elementary, everything about Disney, and spending time with her family…especially her four grandchildren.