SCRIPTURE READINGS: Luke 4:1-14, Mathew 4:1-11
The best way to know how we should pray and fast is to look at the example of Jesus. Jesus fasted for 40 days in the wilderness before He started His earthly Ministry. During the time that Jesus fasted He prayed and sought-after God’s will for His ministry. At the end of the forty days that He had fasted, Jesus was tempted by Satan but He was able to resist that temptation. He was able to do this because He had placed his Father’s will above the physical desires that Satan tempted him with. Jesus fasted as a way to discipline His mind, body, heart, and soul to desire God’s will and a relationship even to the detriment of his comfort and desire to be fed.
Anyone who has done a fast whether absolute, or partial would agree that fasting is difficult. Physically, you may suffer from unpleasant side effects, such as headaches, fatigue, and intestinal discomfort, as your body attempts to adjust to the reduced caloric intake. Spiritually, attacks from the Enemy increase in frequency and intensity, resulting in a barrage of frustrations that can seem overwhelming. However, the same people who would be honest about the challenges of fasting would also concur that the sacrifices are well worth the rewards. So, don’t resist the suffering that accompanies fasting, but instead, rejoice in it! Fasting is a spiritual exercise which God honours. Since Jesus fasted, his true followers will also have to fast, if they indeed follow his teachings! (John 8:31).