time for Prayer and Fasting-the Daniel Fast!

our church will be praying and fasting during the latter part of January in what we call a “Daniel Fast”.   We did not come up with the name it has been around for a long time but it is fairly new to many of our people and our church has only done it once before, last February.

Starting Monday, January 11 until the end of the month, the 31st, we will be praying together, reading the same passages of Scripture together, sharing the same devotions, and of course fasting together.

the Daniel Fast is no easy thing, especially if a person has not ever fasted before for spiritual reasons.  to some degree, we all have fasted right?  i mean the doctors tell us before surgery or blood tests, etc. that we are to fast from midnight on.  i have always hated doing that.  but that is different than the fasting practiced in the Bible and by others for spiritual reasons.

Why Fast?

The reasons for fasting can be wide and many.  however, the basic reasons are for spiritual reasons, like growth, clarity for decisions, mourning, to focus our hearts and minds on Christ, to seek God for direction and wisdom, to go to another level spiritually.  all of these are common reasons why anyone would fast.  Our church is doing this fast b/c of many of those reasons.  we want our church to be spiritually minded and focussed in 2010.  we want purity of lives and hearts.  we want to connect to God at another level.  we want clarity for our future, do we begin a building project in 2010?  we want more salvations and baptisms in 2010.  we want holier lives, marriages, and families.  we want wisdom to know how to handle this tough economy and how it is negatively  affecting so many of us.  Basically, we want to connect to God!!

Why a Daniel Fast and what is it?

a Daniel Fast comes from the book and life example of the prophet Daniel.  Daniel was a person who fasted regularly. (1:8, 12-16, 9:3, 10:2-3).  the Daniel fast is basically a 21 day fast of eating only fruits and vegetables.   If you take the time to read Daniel 9-10 you will find that He prayed and fasted diligently and the Lord revealed truth and direction to Him and answered His prayers.  Any fasting is good to do, because fasting is a valuable spiritual discipline that unfortunately is not pursued much any more.  But a Daniel Fast, takes it all up a notch.  Think about it, for 21 days, diligently disciplining our bodies, minds, and souls to seek God.

Do i have to only eat Fruits and Vegetables?

In the strictest sense, yes.  However, this is not law and legalism and if you are not a ‘regular faster’ then i would recommend that you pray about what it is that God wants you to remove from your passions so you can seek Him more clearly.

Suggestions and Options

honestly, the options are wide open.  the key is to seek God about what He wants to do in your life.  what does He want you to give up to glorify Him?  pray over the next few days and ask God what He wants you to do.  Maybe your fast will be from TV for 21 days, or from sweets, or from the Internet (i.e.-facebook, email, etc), or from whatever…maybe in the 21 days you pick a certain meal from which to fast, like lunch or dinner, or both, or breakfast or maybe you fast from all food on a particular day of the week, or pick multiple days like Mon., Wed., Fri., or Tues., Thurs., Sat., or just the weekend or the weekdays.  Again, this is not law or legalism, but it is a spiritual discipline meant to focus you on seeking Him.  the time you would normally spend eating or whatever you would fast from, should be spent in prayer, scripture reading and seeking God.

i hope you will join us and participate in this years Daniel Fast!  i will post Daily devotions to go along with the prayer calendar readings and prayers.  i encourage you to bookmark this site and visit often, read the posts and others comments.  i am sure it will be a great resource for you.  if you need more information or have not yet signed up and want to participate, then just email me at mikek@crossroadswalton.org and let me know.  if you need a copy of the prayer calendar email me and i will send you a pdf version of it.  God bless!  See ya,

Mike

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