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Does Fasting and Prayer Work?

Updated on January 24, 2016

We, Americans are an undisciplined lot. We want everything yesterday. So, I am writing this article to resurrect some ancient yet wise advice. The scriptures tell us that if we want to inquire of the Lord we should pray and fast. Do you want something from God? Do you want to know something from God? Are you in need of direction or healing from God? Pray and Fast! Do not simply pray and do not simply fast but prayer with fasting will bring you what you need from God.

I have recently discovered the joy of fasting and prayer. It's actually difficult to admit this but I haven't spent much time fasting in my life and my prayer life could always use some improvement. I started doing a juice fast for a day here and there, sometimes I was successful but more often I was not. Part of the problem was that I didn't combine it with prayer. I just wanted to feel better. The other problem was that I always gave myself the option of breaking the fast. It wasn't until I combined my fasting with prayer and mentally decided that I was going to do the fast no matter how much I wanted to eat that I had success. I have to tell you, the first day is the worst. If you can get through the first day, the following days are not nearly as difficult.

The benefits of prayer and faster are huge. I found that after the first day my mind was clearer, my prayer life had an extra zip that wasn't there before and I felt great physically. The hunger pains decreased as the fast went on and I did drink juice smoothies consisting of banana, orange juice, apples, blueberries, carrots, pineapple and strawberries once or twice a day. I found that when I woke up in the morning I had loads of energy and not only that but the cravings for food diminished completely. I still felt hunger pains for maybe an hour or so each day but I then went and had my fruit smoothie or just ignored it and they went away.

I used the time that I would normally eat or prepare meals to pray, read the Bible or worship God. I have to tell you it is a wonderful feeling to know that you are doing something that is pleasing to God and feels good too.

I have to say that as I was fasting I was given a lot of negative advice. In fact all of the comments and advice given to me was negative. Some said, it will slow down your metabolism, others just seemed to want to tempt me to break the fast sooner than I had planned. I cannot help but wonder if this isn't some sort of spiritual warfare from the enemy considering the power of prayer and fasting.

I also would like to comment that after the initial hunger pains I actually felt great. I only have done a maximum of three days but other than the occasional hunger pains I felt really good physically. In fact, after breaking the fast with an egg and toast I noticed that I didn't feel as good as I did before.

In closing, I would like to say that anything that the Word of God encourages us to do cannot be bad for us. Jesus said “when you fast” insinuating that we would fast. He did not say “if” you fast. Jesus fasted for 40 days and he survived I would think a day or several days of fasting would not hurt us physically. Spiritually, the Word says that fasting gives us added power. In this desperately fallen world I can't think of why we would not use a tool that God has given us in order to have more power against the principalities and powers of this age.


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    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 7 years ago from Manhattan

      I would be honored djbraman.

    • djbraman profile image

      djbraman 7 years ago

      Brie, this is a wonderful hub of your personal experience with fasting. If I could link this hub to my prayerline with your link of course, I think the members there embarking upon a fast will be blessed by this hub. I will be posting each day something different on fasting between the 9th and the 30th of January.

    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 7 years ago from Manhattan

      (Ephesians 2:8) For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

      (Ephesians 2:9) Not of works, lest any man should boast.

      Faith is a gift from God as is don't have to "reach" a state of grace. Fasting and prayer are useful tools to help us grow NOT to reach a state of grace.

      Thanks for commenting

    • lea86 profile image

      lea86 7 years ago

      I agree with your view, fasting should be combines with a prayer from the aspects mentally, physically, and spiritually. Also to have a deep faith to God is also important in reaching the state of grace. We have to strongly believe that He will make a much better plan in our lives if we listen to Him.

    • neelia_lyn profile image

      neelia_lyn 7 years ago from Philippines

      It is a good hub. It encourages us to fast and pray.

    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 7 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks for the comments

    • mquee profile image

      mquee 7 years ago from Columbia, SC

      A very good article. We do want everything in a hurry and without effort or sacrifice on our part. Your statement regarding fasting from a Biblical standpoint did bring to mind that I have done very little fasting in my life. Also, that fasting and prayer go hand in hand. Thank you for sharing.

    • fred allen profile image

      fred allen 7 years ago from Myrtle Beach SC

      Thanks for including the video. This is an aspect of Christian living that is so often overlooked or even dismissed. To me fasting is showing God that I want what is most important to Him to become what is most important to me. It shows real passion when we forego sustenence in favor of discipline. Thank you for this reminder of how fasting changes us.

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 7 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      Prayer is a daily constant in my life. I am in constant conversation with Almighty God, usually in an ordinary daily conversation similar to what you and I would experience on the phone or in an I M to each other on computer, so I look upon prayer in a different light than most. God and I chat all the time, and if there is something specific I need to talk about, I simply ask, and God answers usually with the answer needed.

      Brother Dave.

    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 7 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks, I know I need all the help I can get!

    • Saintatlarge profile image

      Saint Lawrence 7 years ago from Canada

      Blessing Brie, great insight into your journey with the Lord. Clarity of mind and spirit is at the heart of fasting. It brings more depth and adds to our discernment as we navigate. Carry on sister, thanks. St.L

    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 7 years ago from Manhattan

      So glad to be of help Ms. Dee!

    • Ms Dee profile image

      Deidre Shelden 7 years ago from Texas, USA

      Great to find this inspiring hub, Brie, and hear your experience! I fasted when I was young, just drinking water/juice sometimes almost 2 weeks, and you are reminding me of what it was like :) You are suggesting a way I could possibly manage it again. Thanks so much for sharing!

    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 7 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks itakins

    • itakins profile image

      itakins 7 years ago from Irl

      Great hub which is very motivating-and a wonderful video.Thank you.

    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 7 years ago from Manhattan

      Thanks for commenting "Dream On", when I first tried it I just did it for one day, then two, then three... I hope that helps.

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 7 years ago

      That was very important and so good.I use to try it when I was young but never had people to do it with or really didn't understand it.I just knew it was good for you.Now after watching the you tube video you cleared up so much.Keep up fasting and I will once again try.I am very happy to be the first to comment on this moving hub.