A fast that God approves
Many churches and individuals begin the New Year with a 21-day Daniel Fast. My church has done it for the past several years and I have participated in many of them. Last year I did not because I dreaded facing weeks of preparation reading labels, spending extra money on appropriate food items, looking for recipes that were Daniel-fast approved, etc. etc. etc.
(In 2016 I wrote a post about why this approach to fasting was troubling to me—see the link below to read that post).
To me this whole modern approach to fasting seems to be the antithesis of Daniel’s motivation for fasting. Daniel 10: 1-3 says he was in mourning because of a vision: “In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia, a revelation was given to Daniel (who was called Belteshazzar). Its message was true and it concerned a great war. At that time I, Daniel, mourned for three weeks. I ate no choice food; no meat or wine touched my lips; and I used no lotions at all until the three weeks were over.” (NIV)
Two things strike me about Daniel’s fast in this passage:
(1) Daniel’s motivation for fasting was about a Great War he saw in a vision. What if we entered our fast truly mourning the “Great War” the enemy is waging against our nation, our culture, our youth and the Church and crying out for God’s intervention.
(2) Just as Daniel entered his fast focusing on the spiritual by denying his flesh and refusing the king’s rich food—so our focus for fasting should be on denying our flesh and humbling ourselves—not spending our time focusing on what foods we can and can’t eat during the fast.
This year I am participating in the fast, but with a new freedom. I’m simply giving up what I personally consider my “choice, rich and pleasant foods” and focusing my attention on spending time drawing near to God in His Word, in worship and in prayer.
If you are participating in a fast this year, I suggest you search your motives and seek God for how He wants you to fast. Trust Him to lead you.
Click here to read my other post about fasting: The Daniel Fast: Are We Really Denying Ourselves?
Join me for an online class on prayer!
I teach an online course based on my book, Lord, It’s Boring in My Prayer Closet, for BeADisciple.com–a great online site affiliated with Southwestern College that offers a variety of Christian classes for pastors, lay leaders and all who want to go deeper with the Lord.
For more info see click here: BeADisciple
Posted in Living the Christian Life, Meditation, Prayer, Small group study on prayer, Spiritual Warfare, Topical Study on Prayer
Tagged Christian Disciplines, Christian Life, discipleship, How to Revitalize Your Prayer Life, Lord It's Boring in My Prayer Closet, Prayer, small group study
A Day of prayer for colleges across this nation!
The Collegiate Day of Prayer is upon us. It is a day set aside for us to worship and contend together for the millions of college students in our nation.
One of the beautiful things about CDOP is that how you pray can vary and it is all heard before the Lord. Some will pray alone, some will host a prayer meeting, some churches & campuses do a 24-hour prayer meeting or prayer-walk their school. Truly, no prayer meeting is alike and the Lord loves them all! Continue reading
Beginning January 16th I will be teaching an online class on prayer, based on my book, Lord, It’s Boring in My Prayer Closet (How to Revitalize Your Prayer Life) at BeADisciple.com.
IFD236 – Lord, It’s Boring in My Prayer Closet: How to Revitalize Your Prayer Life
Course Dates: January 16 – March 3, 2017
If prayer is so important, why is it so hard? Many Christians struggle to overcome boredom and listlessness in prayer. During this seven week study, participants will examine their own prayer life and be challenged to experience prayer in some new ways that will revitalize their prayer life.
Geared for those new to prayer as well as seasoned prayer warriors, this course helps students understand why God gave us prayer and discover their “personal prayer sphere” and their personal “prayer passion.” Students will use scriptures in a new way to form prayers and prayer declarations, learn ways to fix a prayer life that is offline, and explore related topics such as spiritual warfare and fasting. Instructor Sandra Chambers will share her own struggles and victories as she has sought to become more engaged with her prayer life.
Click on “Be A Disciple online class” above to go directly to the class listing where you can register. And please share with friends!