The picture below is my Ethiopian friend, Menelik, trying to teach me about Ethiopian culture & protocol before I met the Mayor of Gondar. He did a GREAT job & I didn’t mess things up too much. Because of Menelik’s help, I had a good experience w the Mayor & I am less intimidated because of this good experience.
With fasting, all too often we may have a bad experience, or it didn’t go like we wanted it to, so its easy to quit & not fast again. Ever had this experience? Instead of quitting, could I suggest that you consider learning from the mistakes to grow & try again w God’s leading? Also, I recently spoke in our church about fasting & thought you might find some practical advice below to be useful. Pls be sure to leave a comment above to help others w things you’ve learned as well! 🙂
Mistakes & Suggestions:
Be mentally prepared for possible caffeine / sugar withdrawals
don’t neglect your appearance, Brush your teeth more often
Be mindful of your physical activity level while fasting
Consider pre-fasting: get body ready for fasting (half decaf, cut back on soda)
Be ready to increase your fluid intake
Personal Mistakes: trying to workout, lift heavy, while fasting, trying to snowboard A LOT during a long fast, eating wrong food going into / coming out of a fast
Attitude check: Is 58 says that fasting can be a bright time – even though its uncomfortable to your flesh
do not put on a gloomy face as the hypocrites do,
Motive check: why are you fasting?
Various reasons: to be noticed by people, to lose weight, to manipulate God
Don’t Try to fast more than what your body can handle
Relationships – schedule socializing around coffee / tea & not meals
Ask God to help you!
Plan – look at your calendar & work on a plan
Personal Mistakes: Being sharp & impatient w my kids & husband, trying to fast for dual reasons – lose weight / slim down & sense God, trying to go longer than the grace God had given me, trying to fast when God hadn’t directed me to
It’s really helpful to increase your prayer & Word time during a fast
Keep a journal – questions, thoughts, the things God speaks to you
Personal Mistakes: Not letting God direct me, Not asking God for help during a fast
Fasting Rewards: your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you (Matt 6:18)
Greater clarity w God: Hear Him more clearly, Greater sensitivity / awareness of God’s presence, Decreased self-reliance, Help in coming through tough situations