Many of us live in societies where food is for grabs at every corner. Consequently, we often eat out of habit and not real hunger.
We need to make a conscious decision to fast amid a food abundance.
Fasting is an ancient discipline that is not so popular in our society and even in today’s churches. Reading the Bible, we can see that all the great men and women of God fasted.
From the dictionary, to fast is a verb that means “to abstain from all food” or “to eat only sparingly or of certain kinds of food.”
Fast can also be used as a noun in the context of “a day or period of fasting.”
From my personal experience, I could write a book about the benefits that fasting has brought into my life. I started fasting in my teenage years and noticed that it increased my hunger for God. As I was deliberately making my body hungry (curbing my appetite) by fasting, my hunger for the things of God intensified—I heard the voice of the Lord more clearly. It was during a fast God told me to relocate to the United States and that my husband was waiting for me over there.
When I immigrated to the United States, I was by myself. All my brothers and sisters, my parents, and relationships in my home church stayed behind, leaving a void in my soul that I started to fill with food. I did not give that empty space to God. Before I realized what was going on, my eating spun out of control. I was so consumed with food—I constantly overate, and food was always on my mind. Feelings of guilt, shame, lack of control, and rapidly gaining weight put me in a psychological cycle that I could not break.
I became desperate and cried out to God—I am a child of God. I pray in the Holy Spirit regularly and read your Word. How come I cannot get free from this Spirit of gluttony? I went to many Christian bookstores, I read lots of Christian books, quoted and memorized scriptures, all to no avail.
Then I read this verse Mark 9:29 which says: “This sort cannot come out by ANYTHING EXCEPT BY FASTING and by prayer” and new light of revelation flooded my soul.
There are demons responsible for different addictions, like food, alcohol, sex, shopping, stealing, etc. Addictions that will not come out any other way but fasting and praying.
So, I started to fast a meal a day. I gave up my most important meal, like dinner, and replaced it with something I loved to do on purpose, to get my mind off from food. I cannot tell exactly when I get my deliverance, but it surely came. The process took about two years. Many times, I stumbled and fell back into overeating. But Jesus was always there to pick me up, and He set me free by His grace.
When I got pregnant with my first child, I remember that driving, intense desire for food was gone. I was free!
The world may say you can never be free from addictions, and you just have to learn to manage them. But not with Jesus—In John 8:36, He said: “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” What freedom! What a joy!
In Matthew 6:16, Jesus said, “when” you fast, it does not say “if”. That means Jesus expects His believers to fast. “Moreover, WHEN you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with sad faces.”
So, I want to encourage you. Even if you have never fasted in your life. Start small. Start with skipping a meal. And give it as a seed to Jesus for your healing and deliverance. By the help of the Holy Spirit be consistent till your deliverance fully manifests.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I come to you with a broken and contrite heart. This (fill the blank) addiction is too big for me to fight. I am desperate. I need your help. Holy Spirit lead me in this fast and prayer, for I know that this kind will not come out except by fasting and prayer. Thank you for giving me the desire and strength to fast. Thank you that the freedom you died for will manifest fully in my life in Jesus’ Name. Amen.