This weekend we are preparing to launch the second annual 21 Days of prayer and fasting season at NorthStar. The goal of fasting is to draw nearer to God. Biblical fasting always has to do with eliminating distractions for a spiritual purpose; it hits the reset button of our soul and renews us from the inside out! It also enables us to celebrate the goodness and mercy of God, and prepares our hearts for all of the good things God desires to bring into our lives. Remember, your personal fast should present a level of challenge, but it is very important to know your own body, know your options and most importantly, seek God in prayer and follow what the Holy Spirit leads you to do.
There are several types of fasts. How you choose to fast is between you and the Lord!
Types of Fasts
- Complete Fast
- This fast calls for drinking only liquids, typically water with light juices as an option.
- The Daniel Fast
- This type of fast has grown increasingly common and is designed so that you eat no meat, sweets, or bread. You consume water and juice for fluids and fruits and vegetables for food.
- Partial Fast
- This fast is sometimes called the Jewish Fast and involves abstaining from eating any types of food in the morning and afternoon. This can either correlate to specific times of the day, such as 6:00 am to 3:00 pm, or from sunup to sundown.
- Media Fast
- This fast is common for those who do not have much experience fasting foods, who have health issues that prevent the fasting of food, or who wish to refocus certain areas of their life that are out of balance. For instance, someone might select to abstain from using social media or watching television for the duration of the fast—and then choosing how to carefully bring that element back into their life in an orderly fashion.
Timing of a Fast
At NorthStar, we encourage fasting corporately for 21 days each year in the month of January. This is part of a season of high-intensity prayer as a church family. You may also opt to fast at other times during the year for your own spiritual development. It’s very typical to fast a single meal, or a whole day, or three days—even more. The timing of your fast is not as important as the strength of your focus on Him as you fast.
We’ve provided several resources below for you and your family. Last year we saw God move in a powerful way as a result of our church praying and fasting together. Over the next 21 days we will post a Bible reading guide, devotional and prayer focus here for you on the blog. These devotionals have been written by some of the members of NorthStar church and will help guide us spiritually on this journey. However the Lord may lead you to fast and pray over he next three weeks we want to encourage you to read through the materials provided below, especially if you will be entering a dietary fast.
If you have children we have provided a mealtime devotional guide for you below to download. We do not recommend children participate in a food fast as their bodies are still in a developmental stage. We’ve provided some alternatives in the download below.
The links below will be valuable tools to guide you in your 21 days of fasting and prayer.
A Guide to Fasting in Prayer – By Bill Bright (Article)
Learn about the Biblical foundations for fasting and prayer and how to fast in a Biblical and healthy way.
Prayer and Fasting Guide – By Stovall Weems, Author of Awakening
A PDF guide to Biblical prayer and fasting. Biblical ideas, health precautions and menu ideas.
NorthStar Prayer and Fasting Prayer Guide for Print – PDF Printout
Day by Day prayer guide for the journey
Family Mealtime Devotional Guide for Kids – PDF Printout