Starts January 6th through January 26th.
Fasting is defined as denying oneself something that is common, normal, and necessary. It is abstaining from food or other things with a spiritual goal in mind. We empty ourselves in order to fill it with God’s presence and experience greater communion with Him. Throughout the Bible and in the early church we see prayer and fasting was a common practice. Scripture gives us examples of both corporate and individual fasting. Moses, David, Daniel and Jesus, all practiced individual prayer and fasting. We see corporate prayer and fasting at various times throughout the Old Testament by the Israelites, such as in 1 Samuel 7 and Nehemiah 9. We also see the early church practice prayer and fasting in the New Testament in Acts 13. Jesus spoke of prayer and fasting as an expected discipline of the Christian faith in Matthew 6.
The primary reason we pray and fast is to draw near to God. Fasting tenderizes and sensitizes our hearts, driving us to focus solely on God and in return to hear what God is saying and pray the prayers that He is praying. He is a God that loves to answer prayer and He loves when we set aside time, push away distractions, and willingly posture ourselves to be before Him. We do not pray and fast to manipulate or earn God’s favor. Instead, prayer and fasting is an act of humility, an admission of desperate dependence on God (Ezra 8:21). In addition to drawing near to God, we can pray and fast for a variety of secondary reasons – to bring about both personal and corporate revival, for emotional and physical healing, for protection against the enemy, and for a greater release of God’s power and presence here on earth.