Fresh Hope – 10th January 2017

Welcome to day 2 of prayer and fasting.

Sometimes the most helpful advice and inspiration when starting out in a fast is of a very basic and practical nature.

For most people, fasting is foreign and they therefore don’t know what to expect in terms of physical occurrences. Many turn back after the first day simply because they don’t think they are cut out for this type of thing.

One of the most basic needs of the human body is of course for food – take that away and the body goes into meltdown.

The first thing that was said of Jesus after he had been on a prolonged fast was…he was hungry!

Matthew 4:2 After fasting for forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.

Yes…the first thing that you will feel is ravenous. Even a piece of dry bread will be to die for. Its normal.

Here are just a few simple guidelines on fasting that will help you on your journey, be it the first fast or hundredth you’ve been on.

Fasting without being combined with prayer is little more than dieting. Set aside a few moments each day in prayer when you would normally be eating. Find a quiet room at home or go for a walk in your lunch break at work, in order to pray.

There will be days when your energy is sapped and you can’t focus on prayer. Don’t condemn yourself – Jesus sees your sacrifice.

Fasting is like spring cleaning for the body – drink as much water as possible each day.

I normally get a headache on the first 1-2 days of fasting; if you do, it’s usually a sign that you needed to fast! Headaches come from burning off the toxins that have been stored up in your body. It’s also your body craving the caffeine that you normally give it daily. After three days, the headaches will normally disappear.

Whenever you fast for at least three┬ádays, your digestive system shuts down and takes a well-earned rest. Some feel sluggish and can’t sleep and yes you’ll feel hungry, but after those initial days, if you’ll keep drinking plenty of water and juices, you’ll come out the other side into an amazing ‘sweet place’. You’ll begin to find a deeper place with God than you’ve ever done before and the thoughts of food and eating will take a back seat.

Medical doctor, Don Colbert says…”fasting not only prevents sickness, if done correctly, it holds amazing healing benefits to those that suffer illness and disease. Fasting is a mighty key to healing the body.”

At the age of 77, Dr Tanner decided under strict medical supervision to fast for 53 days. Among other things, his once thin, grey hair was replaced with new black hair. It was the same colour as when he was a young man. What’s more, he did this several times and lived to be 93!

Remember…if you’re already feeling like giving up – you’re not alone in this. There are hundreds of people right now joining together in this spiritual fast.

Whatever you’ve decided to fast during this next few days, push through and you’ll see a breakthrough.

Ezra 8:23 …So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.

Pastor Mark

A daily devotion for a better way of living.