What I love About Fasting
I bet you never thought you’d hear someone say ‘love’ and ‘fasting’ in the same sentence. But it’s true, you can love fasting. I really love multi-day fasts. What, you ask, exactly is it about fasting that I love? Well, it’s the closeness I feel to God. You may also be asking, ‘how can she do multi-day fasts’, or stating ‘I could never do that’. Well, I’m here to encourage you that trusting God is all it takes.
A little background – I have done 24 hour fasts a few times over the years. But seriously they were ridiculously hard and pretty much I spent the entire time thinking of when I could eat and what I was going to eat. I realize now that I approached fasting with the wrong frame of mind. It was often done as a group and I was very legalistic about it. I hadn’t prayed ahead of time or had a plan as to how I would go about my day any differently. Everything changed when my state of mind changed.
A friend challenged me to do a 3 day fast with her. (She is a fasting & praying pro. BTW, she was cured from diabetes through trusting in God and fasting – but that’s another story). I confided to her that I was afraid to commit to such a fast. I was afraid I would fail and be letting God down. She sweetly said, “Dawn, you let God determine the length of your fast. He will tell you when you’re done. The point is to spend time with Him and focus on Him.” She starts her fasts on Thursday nights and goes till after church on Sunday. I told her, “But I make tacos for a large group at my house every Friday night” (back peddle, back peddle). She didn’t skip a beat, she said, “Then as you’re making those tacos you pray the whole time. And I’ll be praying for you as well.”
“Ok”, I said, “I’ll do it.” I shared my story & plan with my husband & daughter so they’d know what was going on and also with my mom and sister so they could also be praying. My biggest fear was failing and letting God down. But I know that fear and condemnation does not come from God. I prayed leading up to Thursday and spent time going over lots of memory verses. I even found some fasting devotionals on the Bible app which were super helpful.
Friday morning Rick & I went on our usual “Ride with the Bride” bike ride, but what wasn’t usual is we didn’t stop for our post ride acai bowl. When we got home and Rick went to the kitchen to make his lunch, I went into our guest room, closed the door, put in earbuds with soft meditative music playing, and started praying and reading. I felt such a peace and a closeness with God, knowing that I had nothing else that I needed to do and that Rick knew what I was doing and I wouldn’t be disturbed.
Also, knowing that I had this time set aside to focus on God, I utilized the ACTS (Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication) prayer, but spent most of my time on the Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving and very little on the Supplication. God knows and I know what needs there are; when I ask in prayer I’m not telling God anything He doesn’t already know. Spending most of my time in the A, C, T part reminds me of how amazing HE is and how much I need Him.
The next day we had to go to a memorial where, of course, food would be served. Thankfully having Rick, Ashley & Jonathan knowing what was going on with me, I was able to sit at the lunch table with them and just visit and they were able to help me deflect any questions about why I wasn’t eating. That night I made Rick dinner and even sat at the island chatting with him while he ate. And here’s what’s crazy – I wasn’t even hungry! My girlfriend & I were in text communication throughout the whole time holding each other up in prayer.
Sunday after church I came home and after a time of devotion, I broke my fast with a bowl of soup. Honestly, I could’ve continued on with the fast. The hardest thing for me was not anything physical, it was the mental. It’s ridiculous how many times a day I think about food. I wanted to eat, but I didn’t need to eat.
I have now made fasting a part of my regular life and it’s been amazing. I feel so close to God, so clear headed when I’m fasting. I know that we can fast from lots of things, but fasting from food (for now anyway) seems to work the best for me. Although, fasting from FB would probably work well for me also. Anything that you spend lots of time doing or thinking about can work. So every time you think of the “thing”, instead you think about God, pray, sing worship songs, read scripture, listen to devotionals.
That’s why I love fasting. 😊
Dawn is a wife of 30 years and a mother of two adult children. She has been in ministry for decades and has a passion for mentoring young women. When she has any free time, she is either on her bike or in her garden.