Some Fasting Methods
Drink only liquids (you establish the number of days).
The idea behind what is known as the Daniel Fast is gleaned from the Old Testament passage found in Daniel 1:8-14. In it, a young man by the name of Daniel is a captive in Babylon where he is taught Babylonian customs and prepared to serve in the court. Daniel and his closest friends turn down the king's diet of wine and rich foods and Daniel speaks with the chief official about an alternative diet. The official is concerned the health of Daniel and his friends will suffer if they eat nothing but vegetables and water, but Daniel talks him into a ten-day trial period. At the end of the ten days, Daniel and his friends look healthier than those eating the king's diet.
The Bible does not command God's people to follow the Daniel fast. This is an account of one young man's personal convictions regarding diet. He didn't want to be assimilated into the Babylonian culture. Turning away the king's food was one way to separate himself as one set apart for God.
A partial fast is from 6:00 am to 3:00 pm or from sun up to sundown. You can select from three types of fasting —a Full Fast, Daniel Fast or give up at least one item of food.
Fasting to Experience God's Power
Because fasting takes our focus off of ourselves, it opens us to experience God's power. You can find anecdotal testimonies of people who have experienced God's power in miraculous ways as a result of fasting. However, these stories don't offer real evidence to back them up.
Corporate fasting is a time when a group of believers joins in fasting and prayer. This group may be a family, such as when Esther told her uncle to fast and pray, or may be a group from a church or churches. In fact, it can incorporate any group of believers even if they are separated by miles. This fasting is most often connected with specific prayer requests.
The Samuel fast found in 2 Samuel tells of the account of Samuel instructing the Israelites to separate themselves from the world. They had drifted far from God's will and were persecuted by the Philistines. Along with getting rid of the false gods, Samuel told them to fast and pray. This is really another example of corporate fasting.
St. Paul's conversion was a dramatic one. A bright light appeared and he fell from his horse. As a blind man, he fasted and prayed as he sought God's will for his life. (Acts 9:1-22)
John the Baptist Fast
John the Baptist lived life in the wilderness and ate a limited diet of locusts and wild honey. While that isn't going to be the diet of choice for most people today, this fast represents separation from the world.
Start this year off right and discover the rewards of putting God first! I look forward to what God will do in our lives and in our land as we seek Him together.