Hi how are you all? I pray your year has started off good. Every year in January our church participates in a fast. This fast is not primarily to totally give up food (which you could), but it is a time to dedicate the year to God and listen to His voice regarding the plans He has for you and your family. Most people fast some sort of food as it helps them stay on track and physical hunger drives us to seeking God more. This is for a set period only.
I love what the Biblical definition of fasting is in Isaiah 58:6. It says that the fast God is after is that it should break the chains of injustice, get rid of exploitation in the workplace, free the oppressed, cancel debts, share your food with the hungry, invite the homeless, clothe the shivering and be available to your own families (Message translation).
This is all about who God wants us to be in our Christian walk. Fasting is a time to ensure that we are following God in all that we do. It is doing an attitude adjustment if we need it. For me personally over a couple of years, God has used this time to break the bonds off my life. He has used it to help me eat better but more than that to break those things off that shouldn’t be there or that are taking up too much time.
This year God has broken the bond of watching the news every night. Instead of that I have been reading it on my iPad for ten minutes and then sitting outside with my husband having quality time. Unless a natural disaster happens, this is the end of news watching for me. It used to take up an hour of my time every night. God may be calling you to do something similar.
Sometimes instead of fasting food, God asks us to fast other things like He did with me ( I also fasted desserts and sugar). This breaks the bonds of those things off your life. It means spending more time doing what God wants us to do instead of what we want to do.
So can we fast at other times? Yes, whenever you are seeking clarity about something with God or when you feel that the bonds in an area of our life are too strong. What do you need to do? You need to set a time to fast. It could be one meal every week or it could be three days or longer or shorter, depending what God directs. If you have a medical condition, you need to check with your doctor. If the doctor says no to fasting, just fast something else eg social media, sports, television etc.
This week or in the months to come, pray and ask God if there is something in your life holding you back and if He calls you to fast, do it. It will break those bonds. But just be careful, you need to have the wisdom of God. Talk to your pastor or a Christian you trust before you start.
If you need any more guidance, please contact me. Have a great week and keep living the life God intended for you. PS let me know how you went.