Are you planning for a Personal Retreat?
Are you yearning for a Spiritual Breakthrough?
Learn the Power of Fasting as Tiffany author of A Beginners Guide to Pray and Fast: Taking Spiritual Warfare to the Next Level by Tiffany Montgomery shares this piece with us.
Tiffany Montgomery writes…
Dry. Empty. Hopeless. Are these feelings you can relate to in your spiritual life? There was a time you were on fire for Jesus, everything was new and fresh. How long has it been since you felt the warmth of that fire? When was the last time you heard His precious voice? Adding a time of prayer and fasting into your life can be both purposeful and meaningful to draw near to God once again.
Today I share how to Choose the types of fasting for spiritual breakthrough.
What types of fasting lead to a spiritual breakthrough?
The truth is that there are many types of fasting and any one of them can lead to spiritual breakthroughs in your life.
We all walk through seasons of dryness and hopelessness where we need God to fan into flame the spark of our spirit. There is no shame in seeking Him. In fact, I believe God calls us to seek Him, to seek Him desperately, until He is found!
“For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:11-13 NASB)
When looking at the types of fasting you must keep in mind that God cares much more about your heart than the food you are or are not eating.
Spiritual Fasting is a heart issue – not a diet plan!
“When looking at the types of fasting you must keep in mind that God cares much more about your heart than the food you are or are not eating. Spiritual Fasting is a heart issue – not a diet plan!” Tiffany Click to Tweet
How to fast according to The Bible
The Bible is filled with clear examples of many types of fasting. In Scripture you can study:
The Elijah fast.
Why did Esther fast for 3 days?
What is a full fast?
What is a partial fast?
See how fasting for spiritual growth works.
Yes, there are many types of fasting found in the Bible. Which one leads to spiritual breakthrough? All of them have the potential, but you can learn more about the types of fasting that pleases God here.
Each Biblical hero who gives us an example of fasting shows spiritual growth only when his or her heart was in the right place.
One fact that I want to make clear here is that learning how to fast according to the Bible is learning how to get your heart right not how to plan a menu.
Different Types of Fasting and their Meanings
Fasting is not a complicated science. In scripture we see Ester fast for breakthrough, Elijah fast for direction and wisdom, Daniel fast for vision, Israel fast for sin and victory in battle. Each example used different types of fasting and their meanings had little to do with theology.
Maybe a well-studied theologian would argue with me about this, but the point of fasting is not that food is bad and hunger draws us to God. No…
Biblical fasting is about the heart in the same way circumcision was about the heart.
Spiritual fasting is giving up something earthly that satisfies you (like food or Facebook) for a time so that you can be satisfied by God.
Fasting is humbling yourself before God, pouring your heart out to Him in desperation, seeking Him more than anything else.
Yes there are many types of fasting and each presents you with a list of things that satisfy you. Things that satisfy your hunger for food, your hunger for comfort, your hunger for entertainment, your hunger for sex, which are all things that satisfy your flesh.
Each type of fasting can be effective to different people depending on what they genuinely seek satisfaction from daily.
How do you choose between all the types of fasting to know which will be purposeful and meaningful in your specific life situation? I recommend Intermittent Fasting.
“Spiritual fasting is giving up something earthly that satisfies you (like food or Facebook) for a time so that you can be satisfied by God. Fasting is humbling yourself before God, pouring your heart out to Him in desperation, seeking Him more than anything else. ~A Beginners Guide to Pray and Fast: Taking Spiritual Warfare to the Next Level by Tiffany Montgomery”
Intermittent fasting benefits
Intermittent fasting is all the hype in the dieting world today but if Christians only understood it I believe it would quickly take over the Church world as well.
It is overwhelming looking at all the different types of Biblical fasting. So taking each type of fasting one by one and trying it for a portion of the day can really help you see which area affects your heart the deepest.
When you know which earthly thing you are seeking for satisfaction you can begin to plan an effective fast for real spiritual breakthrough!
Examples of Intermittent Spiritual Fasting
- Full Fast
If you are satisfied with all manner of food and drink plan to have an early dinner but stop eating or drinking at 6:00 PM and skip breakfast. This is an 18 hour fast, resuming meals at lunch or 12:00 PM the following day.
Spend the time you would have eaten, in prayer and meditate on a scripture. Really lean into God through that time and see if it is effective.
- Partial Fasting
Perhaps you have health concerns and skipping even one meal can cause you more problems. No worries. Many Biblical figures simply gave up certain foods that were satisfying. Meat or sweets are very satisfying and can be given up for the same 18 hours, even 24 hours if you are brave.
Every time you think about that chocolate bar or bacon, pray over the spiritual state of your life. Keep a verse on hand to meditate over and carve out lots of quiet space for God to speak into your life.
- Non-Food Fast
I love that scripture also gives us examples of fasting from sex, oils, entertainment, and other non-food things. The truth is, in the 21st century, we seek satisfaction from far more than food!
How often do you pick up and check your cell phone? Does the notification bell on your Instagram get you to immediately scroll through your feed? How many times do you shop the aisles of Target to deal with emotional overload?
It may take several attempts to find which non-food fast is effective for you, but I have found that these rock me deeper than food ever has.
Plan a day with no social media. Better yet, give your cell phone to your spouse for a few hours so you can connect with God and see how many times you pray.
Intermittent fasting benefits can not be overstated
God has used intermittent spiritual fasting in my life to bring powerful spiritual breakthrough. Foremost of all the intermittent fasting benefits is to find the things that I seek for satisfaction in gentler ways than a full fast ever could. Honestly, it’s much easier to agree to give up social media for 18 hours than 10 days. It’s much easier to avoid the 5 ways to ruin a time of fasting this way as well!
But once God’s light shone on the things that were competing in my heart with Him, a 10 day spiritual fast replaced the intermittent fast and spiritual breakthrough came in wave after wave of grace and mercy.
I am not special. If God can use Intermittent Spiritual Fasting in my life He can use it in yours!
Maybe you feel the stir but are still unsure of the specific how to’s of fasting. No worries. I’ve written a short book to help guide you through the process of fasting.
A Beginners Guide to Fast and Pray: Taking Spiritual Warfare to the Next Level. Get your copy and start your journey to spiritual breakthrough today!
How to Choose the Types of Fasting for Spiritual Breakthrough
The real question should not be, “What types of fasting lead to spiritual breakthrough?”
No, that is the wrong question, Sweet Fellow Prayer Warrior. That question implies that spiritual breakthrough can be manipulated or that it is somehow a formula to be followed.
The right question or questions should probe deeper into a heart that loves God but is still dry. Yes, real Christians experience dryness.
Ask God, “What led to spiritual dryness?”
Spend time thinking through the question, “Why do I need a spiritual breakthrough now?”
Trust me, He will reveal what you are seeking for satisfaction instead of the love of God.
Once you begin to ask the right questions, drawing nearer to God with each question, He will shine His light of love into your heart. He will reveal the thing that has replaced Him on the throne of your heart.
It may take time so be patient with yourself. This need for spiritual breakthrough did not come in a day! Try intermittent fasting to find the things that will really humble you.
Whatever you do, keep seeking Him. Seek Him with your whole heart. When you are seeking God with your whole heart it won’t matter which types of fasting lead to spiritual breakthrough. You will have a spiritual breakthrough with any of the types of fasting that humbles your heart and leads you to His throne room!
Tiffany of Hope Joy in Christ inspires Christian Women to grow in faith, live out Biblical Marriage Principles and raise Godly Children. She is also author of A Beginners Guide to Fast and Pray: Taking Spiritual Warfare to the Next Level on Amazon. Join the Wives Only Facebook Group here or keep up with her through Pinterest.