In recent years, January 1st signifies the beginning of 21 day fasts for a growing number of churches across America. Depending upon the congregation, this could mean a …
1) Daniel Fast: Eating vegetables and water based upon the events of Daniel 1:11-14.
2) Media Fast: Replacing listening and viewing habits for 3 weeks with Bible Study, prayer and soaking in worship music.
3) Traditional Fast: Limiting your diet to liquids, with stricter fasts allowing only water.
Before you jump into any commitment, you might want to consider the advice of Solomon.
When you make a vow to God, do not delay to fulfill it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow. – Ecclesiastes 5:4
My advice is to take a more realistic approach. If fasting is new to you or something you haven’t done in years, ease yourself into 21 days of fasting. I recommend skipping 1 meal per day, the first week. If your body is up for the challenge, limit your eating to one meal per day the second week. However, if you find yourself gorging each meal, you might want to focus on skipping one meal per day the entire 21 days. Make a vow you can keep, then honor it.
When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven. – Nehemiah 1:4
As for what to expect, the lack of food can make individuals grumpy. Those with medical conditions may need to opt for a Media Fast to avoid health concerns. Beyond the pain, the insight one receives from fasting can be life altering. While fasting during my days of teaching, several messages of discernment came to me through the power of the Holy Spirit. In addition, your perspective of food will change as fasting will heighten your sense of taste. In the end, the choice is up to you: to fast or not to fast?
by Jay Mankus