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21 DAYS OF PRAYER AND FASTING

At Lifted Church we take the first 21 days of the year and devote it to corporate prayer and fasting! The bible shows us how powerful prayer combined with fasting can be. Biblical fasting is, very simply, denying oneself earthly desires for the sake of seeking God and drawing closer to Him. Pastor Stovall Weems says that “prayer is connecting with God; fasting is disconnecting ourselves from the world.” That’s a great way to describe how prayer and fasting work so powerfully together. Fasting is like hitting a reset button, both physically and spiritually. As we go about our daily lives, there are things that can build up over time and we can start to lose our spiritual focus. Fasting is like a deep cleaning both spiritually and physically that helps us take our minds off the things of this world and instead gives us a fresh spiritual focus. It’s all about drawing closer to God.

FASTING

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WHAT IS FASTING?

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 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 body, your options, and, most importantly, to seek God in prayer and follow what the Holy Spirit leads you to do.

TYPES OF FASTS

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COMPLETE FAST

This fast calls for drinking only liquids, typically water with light juices as an option.

SELECTIVE FAST

This type of fast involves removing certain elements from your diet. One example of a selective fast is the Daniel Fast, during which you remove meat, sweets, or bread from your diet and 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 type 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.

SOUL FAST

This fast is common for those who do not have much experience fasting food, who have health issues that prevent them from fasting 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 choose to carefully bring that element back into their life in an orderly fashion at the conclusion of the fast.

 

 

TIMING OF A FAST

At Lifted Church, we encourage fasting for 21 days each year in the month of January. This is part of a season of focused prayer as a church family. You may also choose to fast at other times during the year for your own spiritual development. It’s very typical to fast a single meal, a whole day, or three days or more. The timing of your fast is not as important as the strength of your focus on Him as you fast.

 

Scripture References

Matthew 6:16-18

Matthew 9:14-15

Luke 18:9-14

Acts 27:33-37

Nehemiah 9:1-3