Most American families normally go with what is fast and convenient when it comes to meal choices for their family. This is probably because, with the busy work schedules, schools and other activities, not a lot of time is left for many other activities.
However, when you are raising a Christian family, and you are interested in following the teachings of the Bible, there are times when you will have to think carefully about the meal choices you are making for the family. Here is what you need to know about fasting for family members.
What Is The Importance Of Fasting?
The gospel tells us that after Jesus was baptized, he went to the wilderness. He stayed there for 40 days where he was tempted by the devil. All this time, he neither ate nor drank anything. The fact that he fasted helped him overcome the devil’s temptations. In the Old Testament, we also see many occasions when the Israelites would fast when praying. In short, as a Christian, prayer and fasting are the most effective way of repenting and asking God to listen to our prayers.
Fasting In The Family Setting
When you are a young Christian single, it is very easy to fast and pray, however, as a family, and when there are little children involved, it becomes a little more complicated. This is because the little ones may not have the endurance that our bodies have and may not really understand the meaning of the concept of going without food. This is where you will have to explore the different options available for fasting Christians.
- The absolute fast: This is where you will not eat any food or drink any water during the length of time you are fasting. It may be the most difficult one for families with little children.
- Supernatural absolute: this is where you go without food and water for a longer time than the absolute fast.
- The liquid fast: water fruits, juice and vegetables are allowed during this fast.
- Partial fast: here you eat certain types of food and avoid others altogether.
Many churches have come up with great fasting solutions for families with small kids. One of these solutions is the Daniel fast. This is whereby certain foods that are commonly enjoyed are restricted for a period of time, as the people seek the Lord. Another popular fasting method is Eat Stop Eat, and you can read this post by IntermittentBody.com that answers does Eat Stop Eat work.
The benefits that come from fasting include the fact that your faith grows stronger with every successful fast. In addition to that, your physical and mental health improves. For instance, when you cut out things like fast foods from your diet, you are likely to lose weight, lower blood cholesterol and pressure levels and achieve overall wellness.
Before starting the fast in a family setting, however, you need to make sure that the little ones understand why they need to be part of it. Sit down with your children and read for them parts of the scriptures where servants of God found it necessary to fast. Some good passages include Ester 4:16, Ezra 8:21-26 and Daniel 10. This way, they children will have an easier time adjusting.