Fasting is often one of the misunderstood and misapplied areas of Christianity. Everybody seems to have their own ideas about it, own way of interpreting Bible passages on it, and versions of how they should actually practice it as part of their faith. Apart from Christianity, many other faiths implement versions of fasting, too; so, it’s not just confusing within the Christian sphere, it’s confusing for many people. They may grasp the general idea and maybe even practice it, yet might not understand the significance, how to do it, or even why they should do it. The following article will give 7 tips for Christians considering fasting. These will be practical things a Christian should know and think about before deciding to start fasting. If you have your own tips to share with others, please leave a comment below the article for others to read!
You should understand why you’re doing it before you actually do it
Too many people jump into fasting because someone tells them to do it, not because they really understand it themselves. They may hear a church leader say it’s important for their faith and be really excited about it, but the explanation may be vague or the person doesn’t fully understand what was said. Regardless, there is so much confusion surrounding fasting that it’s understandable why people just neglect it. Before you begin fasting, ask yourself why you’re really doing it: is it because other people are? Do you feel you are going to get something out it? Answering this question will help you determine if it’s something you still want to do.
Don’t gloat about it
Boasting about you’re recent fasting defeats the entire purpose of it. If you are really serious about fasting, there is no reason to go around telling people that you are doing it. Do it in secret and your father in Heaven will reward you in secret!
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Plan out how you are going to fast
Before fasting, make sure you have a plan in place. Some people give up all food and drinks (except for water, of course!), while others give up selected food or special treats. Everyone does things a bit different. Make sure you decide exactly how you are going to accomplish the fasting.
Don’t do anything unsafe
You may read about characters in the Bible who fasted for weeks and weeks, but that doesn’t mean or imply that you must do the same. Make sure your body gets the proper nutrients it needs and never deprive yourself from water. To do so will be very dangerous and unsafe for you. Many people try fasting programs that are very unhealthy for you, so be aware and make sure you consult with your doctor if need be.
Don’t feel guilty if you can’t fast from food
There are some people who literally cannot fast from food without putting themselves in serious danger. For example, diabetics must maintain their blood sugar with proper food intake and insulin; fasting from food for these people is out of the question. However, they should not feel guilty because of their health issues or feel like second-class Christians. If they cannot fast from food, perhaps there are certain things they can fast from: technology, certain drinks or treats, etc. The point is to give up something that is important—but don’t put yourself in danger.
Have a specific time length that is obtainable
Don’t start fasting without knowing when the end will be. It will be extremely hard to fast if you don’t have an end in sight—or, you’ll just end up stopping it as soon as the going gets tough.
Prayer is extremely important during fasting
The idea of fasting is not to just give up stuff, it’s to put God in His proper place—first in your life! Food is not more important, technology isn’t, or anything else. While fasting, be sure to replace the time you would be eating or using anything you’ve given up to pray and communicate with the Heavenly father. If this is not done, you risk your fasting being nothing more than an extreme diet program.
Fasting intimidates numerous people, but it’s actually quite simple when it comes down to it. Before getting started with fasting, be sure you understand why it is you are doing it, gather up the appropriate information by reading passages of Scriptures and studying about it, and then make a specific action plan.
Have any more tips to add, or perhaps some Bible passages on Fasting? Go ahead and add them in a comment below!