As a life long food addict, fasting is not something I ever really considered. In more recent years, after becoming a Christian, I’m always searching for ways to grow in my faith and relationship with God. Last year sparked an interest for me with fasting and I’ve been obsessed with researching this fascinating topic ever since.
The benefits reach far and wide, but I want to share 3 truly life-changing reasons we should begin using fasting in our spiritual walk. Please note: I’m not a medical professional. You may need to check with your doctor before starting any type of fast.
1. A Stronger Relationship With God
“Fasting is a way of revealing to ourselves and confessing to our God what is in our hearts. Where do we find our deepest satisfaction—in God or in his gifts? And the aim of fasting is that we come to rely less on food and more on God.”
~John Piper, A Hunger for God
Food can easily become an idol for us. It certainly has for me. Food controls me far too often. I turn to it for comfort, loneliness, exhaustion, and many other reasons it’s not intended for.
Relying on God rather than food brings us to a breathtaking trust and faith. We show Him no physical hunger can match the way He fills us. God becomes our sole provider satisfying us in a way food never possibly could.
2. God’s Amazing Blessings
“Fasting is a tremendous weapon and a source of power in the life of a believer. The blessings in my life are directly attributed to the fasting in my life.”
~Jentezen Franklin, Fasting
Pastor Franklin’s book is filled with beautiful stories of people being blessed after a period of fasting. It highlights testimonies of not only people today, but the many examples in the Bible. He has seen everything from cured diseases to life callings being carried out by being able to hear God speak more clearly through fasting.
Let’s look at a few of the incredible blessings heaped upon the people of Biblical times during fasting periods. Pastor Franklin points out many of these stories, including Esther, Hannah, and the infamous fast of Daniel.
Esther organized a three-day fast with the Jews of her city. Their lives were spared from Haman’s plan to annihilate all the Jews. In the end, Haman’s life was taken rather than the Jews he so harshly sought. (Esther 4-7)
Hannah, devastated by her inability to conceive a child, fasted and cried out to God. He blessed her with the birth of Samuel soon after.
So in the course of time Hannah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”
~1 Samuel 1:20
Daniel devotedly fasted and prayed while in Babylonian captivity. God later prospered him greatly for his dedication, making him a high level administrator under King Darius. He even protected Daniel from ferocious lions when his jealous coworkers had him thrown in the den. (Daniel 6)
3. Health Benefits
“I’m convinced the human brain benefits from short periods abstaining from food… Beyond the brain, though, intermittent fasting also has measurable, beneficial effects on other areas in the body—on the heart, on blood profile, on cancer risk.”
~Dr. Michael Mosley, The Fast Diet
Dr. Michael Mosley teaches about the substantial health benefits of Intermittent Fasting, a diet plan consisting of fasting and non-fasting cycles. After just 12 hours of food restriction, your body starts rapidly repairing itself, along with many other astonishing benefits. I truly believe God blesses us with these health improvements for stepping away from our food obsession even if it’s just for part of the day.
The Fast Diet is not a spiritually based program, but I plan to implement it as one. Prayer and time in the Word throughout the fasting cycles of this meal plan would add the incredible spiritual benefits to the health improvements Dr. Mosley suggests.
Fasting is an extraordinary tool to add to our Spirit filled armor. I would love for you to join me in our Facebook community as we incorporate this and other Christian living tips into our daily walks.
Blessed are you who hunger now,
for you will be satisfied.
Candace Playforth is a wife, mom, Jesus follower, serenity seeker, and writer sharing her messy life to encourage others. She blogs about her faith, life, and creative pursuits at CandaceCreates.com. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.