A Hungry Spirit
A real life story about the power of FASTING.
Probably one of the most eye-opening things i have ever done in my Christian journey was go on a fast. There is really no way to DIE TO THE FLESH faster than to deny your flesh of the nutrients it truly needs to survive. Now as most of you know, as long as you are not malnourished to begin with you will not die without eating for many days because our bodies have most of the nutrients stowed away in storage that we physically need to survive.
Jesus fasted for 40 days and 40 nights as did David, Elijah, Ezra, Esther, John the Baptist’s disciples, Paul and many others. According to (https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/intermittent-fasting-surprising-update-2018062914156), Something great about intermittent fasting is that “A growing body of research suggests that the timing the fast is key, and can make IF a more realistic, sustainable and effective approach for weight loss as well as diabetes prevention”. This is also showing even more improvement when combined with a plant-based diet, although I will say I think it’s crucial to do a whole foods diet if you are going to do plant-based. This means one-ingredient foods from nature! Furthermore, studies in rats have shown IF causes improvement in several markers of health such as blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar.
A recently did a 21 day fast with my church during the new year. Now there are many approaches to fasting, and I personally did not want do a full on fast for the entire 21 days, and the one 24 hour period I did this resulted in a relapse, which I realized was sort of pushing me past what I could handle to keep my eyes fixed on Jesus, see? Even I MESS UP!
I began my fast by starting with giving up two things for a week that are already difficult to for me to give up completely, #1 all foods with processed or added Sugar, and #2 electronics. The second week, I gave up processed carbs in addition (chips, pasta, bread, popcorn, or other processed snack foods in this category. The Last week I gave up everything but fruits and vegetables.. and boy was this hard! However, I still had legumes (beans, peas etc) for some protein. The last 2 days is when I attempted to stop eating altogether, which resulted in me buying and devouring a small pizza and consuming it inside our car in the garage away from our children.
This was the ending for me.. a few days early, and you know what? I’M PROUD! I am so proud of what I learned from God during those 3 weeks. He spoke to me, he led me and guided me, and I had some of the most beautiful moments of my life worshipping him with my guitar and my voice while I could almost SEE and FEEL him and his angels right next to me because of how REAL and STRONG the spiritual realm was to me during that time. In the last weeks of the fast, I could almost hear angels singing throughout the day, and I just knew in my spirit more than EVER that I was standing in the presence of the Lord Almighty.
God has never been more real to me than in those weeks. The physical realm almost melted away, it was as if it didn’t even matter because worshipping God became my biggest reality. The sickness, the disease and death didn’t stand a chance in that moment because I knew how it paled in comparison to the power and might of God. Let alone my cravings in that moment. Let alone my weaknesses, my unfolded laundry or dirty kitchen. There was nothing that seemed more important or more prominent to me than saving souls for Christ. Than SERVING the Lord wholeheartedly instead of serving myself and my flesh-like desires for ice cream, or cake.
I was in tears over just the awe-inspiring PRIVELEDGE it was to be in the PRESENCE of the King. Bowing before him, singing to him, worshipping him, participating in all that was the kingdom of God. Nothing can take away that experience, and nothing can take it away from anyone who chooses to exercise the power of fasting.
-Joy Hoisington, CFNC, LE
Check out a fast I designed called "The 14 day Calling Fast" in the blog section.