Main Summary: How to Fast Successfully by Derek Prince is a brief piece that enlightens the modalities of a Christian fast. What to expect, spiritually and physically, and how to maximize it for definite results.
Lessons I learned from this book
- Similarities of Fasting and Prayer
- Bible Based Expectation For Fasting
- Fasting and Your Physical Health
- Ruling The Flesh by The Spirit Through Fasting
Anyone can benefit from Fasting, but for the believer, it is not just a custom but rather a commandment. Which I think is so important, because of the benefits both spiritually and physically embedded in it for fruitful and successful living.
Similarities of Fasting and Prayer
The sermon of Jesus on the mount in Matthew 6 according to the author portrays the similitude embedded in the spiritual exercise of fasting and prayer.
• We pray at fixed times and also when we are prompted by the Holy Spirit.
• So also with fasting; we fast at fixed times and also fast when prompted by the Holy Spirit.
• We pray individually and also pray collectively as groups.
• So also we fast personal on an arranged schedule and also collectively as a body. Whether with family or with a group of believers.
Bible Based Expectation For Fasting
Fasting without a goal or objective is sure to produce a wasted effort. You must according to the author set out time to read the word of god as the word of God is an important objective in fasting.
Also, you must create time to pray. Fasting is seen as a period of humbling yourself before God, and prayer is the medium by which you approach him. In Psalms 35:13 David showed us how he used fasting to humble yourself before God in prayers.
There are certain promises in scriptures for those who fast according to the will of God as found in Isaiah 58. Such as:
• Continual guidance;
• Work that endures;
Light; Health; Righteousness; Glory; Answered prayers; Continuous guidance; Satisfaction; Refreshing; Word that endures; and Restoration.
Fasting and Your Physical Health
According to the author; before fasting it is wisdom to make up your mind. the author used the term called “set your face.”
This is because, during a fast, you will feel the huge to eat, or necessarily feel hungry. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t do without food. The reason this happens is that your stomach is used to certain feeding habits.
The truth is, in an hour or two, the hunger pangs will subside; even when you’ve eaten nothing. There are also measures you can use to fool the stomach. Such as drinking water, the stomach would assume it has eaten.
The exercise of Fasting usually would reveal or uncover certain spiritual or physical problems. Depending on their severity, the author recommends seeing someone with experience. Either a Pastor or a Doctor.
When Fasting, the author recommends it to be wise to take plenty of fluids—distilled water, because of its effect of flushing the kidneys and generally cleansing the body.
Also Read: How To Live A Purpose Driven Life
As men, we need to rest sometimes. Fasting in this light is a kind of resting that keeps your spirit and stomach void of activities—waiting on the Lord. Many may wait till they break down in sickness before they rest. But it is wise to rest voluntarily, than to be compelled to do it, due to sickness.
It is also necessary to learn and master the habit of regulating how you eat, when not in a fast. According to the author, which I think you may have observed practically. Eating excessively reduces your physical energy.
When you eat beyond what you need in food, you give your body extra work of unnecessary digestion. Which makes you less productive in your work.
Ruling The Flesh by The Spirit Through Fasting
God’s ability to perform in any capacity is unquestionably great and unfathomable. However, his power is limited to the level of power being released in us and through us. Either through prayers, preaching, or other forms of service.
The Holy Spirit can only function freely through us, to the degree of our subjection to him. Your “I’s” (I want; I think; I feel) must be subject to his.
This can be done, by an effort to evaluate or appraise yourself. The authors posed a question to help;
“Which is servant, and which is master; spirit or flesh?”
The flesh should always be the servant because it always has been a terrible master, to be subject to—why? Because if you must succeed in this Christian life with a crown at the end; then, you must have decided that you cannot be controlled by your body and its appetites.
Rather, you must be controlled by a sense of God’s divine destiny and purpose for your life. You cannot afford to be a slave to your flesh; your fasting is of no essence if you keep wallowing in sin.
The only way to conquer its reign is to serve it (flesh) a notice through fasting that, ‘You don’t control me, I am not subject to you. You are my servant and must obey what God’s Spirit in me demands.’
Also Read: Help! My Flesh Needs Discipline
In conclusion, we have said that you can lead your flesh by your spirit, through the instrument of personal and collective fasting. Bearing in mind that the action of studying God’s word and prayer sums up the forces to humble yourself before God to receive the various blessings highlighted above.
Finally, here’s my question for you.
Have you mastered the habit of fasting? If so, how did you do it?
I will love to hear from you, please leave your answer and comments in the comment box below.
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Also Read: God’s Authority and Power