Spiritual Practices

Fasting

Fasting is essentially giving something up for a period of time to create space for God. Fasting typically involves abstaining from food, but you could also practice fasting from other things that crowd out your time with God and awareness of his presence.

  • TV/Netflix
  • Social media
  • Shopping
  • Video games

As with any spiritual disciplines, start with small steps.

  • If you are fasting from food, choose to give up one meal. Or, a slightly longer fast of 24 hours. Some choose to eat lunch, then fast during dinner and breakfast the following morning, breaking their fast with lunch.
  • If you are fasting from one of the activities above, you could choose one and fast from it for at least a full day. Perhaps try a 3-5 day fast.
  • To learn more about intermittent fasting, check out this article, Fasting for Beginners, which is a recommendation from Dr. Phil Zimmermann (referenced by Chris in his fasting sermon).

Fasting is not about the physical act. It is about creating space for God in your life and refocusing on him as our ultimate pursuit in life.

Richard Foster says this, “Fasting helps us keep our balance in life. How easily we begin to allow nonessentials to take precedence in our lives. How quickly we crave things we do not need until we are enslaved by them. . . . Our human cravings and desires are like rivers that tend to overflow their banks; fasting helps them in their proper channels.” (Celebration of Discipline)

Recommended Resources

Fasting: Spiritual Freedom Beyond Our Appetites by Lynne M. Baab
Fasting by Scot McKnight
A Hunger for God: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer by John Piper

Feasting and Fasting // Bible Project podcast
Fasting: Our Relationship to Food, Body, and Image // Bridgetown Church