How to Pray and Fast
Start With a Clear Goal
Be specific. Do you need direction, healing, restoration of your marriage or family issues? Are you facing financial difficulties? Ask the Holy Spirit for guidance.
Confess your sins to God. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal areas of weakness. Forgive all who have offended you and ask forgiveness from those you may have offended. Surrender your life fully to Jesus Christ and reject the worldly desires that try to hinder you (Romans 12:1-2).
Deciding Which Fast To Participate In
The type of fasting you choose is up to you. Here are some options:
- Daniel Fast
- Partial Fast
What to Expect
When you fast, your body detoxifies and eliminates toxins from your system. This can cause mild discomfort such as headaches and irritability during withdrawal from caffeine and sugars. And naturally, you will have hunger pains. Limit your activity and exercise moderately. Take time to rest. Fasting brings about miraculous results. You are following Jesus’ example when you fast. Spend time listening to praise and worship music. Pray as often as you can throughout the day. Get away from the normal distractions as much as possible and keep your heart and mind set on seeking God.
How to End
Don’t overeat when the time comes to end your fast. Begin eating solid food gradually; eat small portions or snacks.
What is a Daniel Fast?
This fast is based on the prophet Daniel’s fasting experiences as recorded in the Bible. The fast is a biblically based partial fast. In Daniel chapter 10, the fast resulted in answered prayer and spiritual insight. One of the great things about the Daniel Fast is that you are not limited to any specific amount of food, but rather to the kinds of food you can eat.
Three key components to a Daniel Fast:
- Only fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes & whole grains.
- Only water or natural fruit juice for a beverage.
- No sweeteners, bread, meat, eggs or dairy products.
Foods to include during a Daniel Fast
All fruits. These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned. Fruits include: apples, bananas, blackberries, cherries, grapes, grapefruit, lemons, mangoes, peaches, etc.
All vegetables. These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned. Vegetables include, asparagus, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, cauliflower, corn, cucumber, kale, onions, potatoes, spinach, sweet potatoes, zucchini, etc.
All whole grains. Includes, whole wheat, brown rice, millet, quinoa, oats, barley, grits, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat tortillas, rice cakes, and popcorn.
All nuts and seeds. Includes, sunflower seeds, cashews, peanuts, and sesame. Also, nut butters including peanut butter.
All legumes. These can be canned or dried. Legumes include, dried beans, pinto beans, split peas, lentils, black eyed peas, kidney beans, black beans, cannellini beans, and white beans.
All quality oils. Includes, olive, canola, grape seed, peanut, and sesame.
Beverages: Spring water, distilled water, or other pure waters.
Other: Tofu, soy products, vinegar, seasonings, salt, herbs and spices.
Foods to avoid during a Daniel Fast
All meat and animal products. Includes, beef, lamb, pork, poultry, and fish.
All dairy products. Includes, milk, cheese, cream, butter, and eggs.
All sweeteners. Includes, sugar, raw sugar, honey, syrups, molasses, date honey, agave, stevia and cane juice.
All leavened bread, including Ezekiel Bread (it contains yeast and honey) and baked goods.
All refined and processed food products. Includes, artificial flavorings, food additives, chemicals, white rice, white flour, and foods that contain artificial preservatives.
All deep fried foods. Includes, potato chips, french fries, and corn chips.
All solid fats. Including shortening, margarine, lard and foods high in fat.
Beverages: Coffee, tea, herbal teas, carbonated beverages and energy drinks.