When you understand fasting, you will want to fast. You will call it a delight that you fasted. Once again, I want to emphasize that we don’t fast to score points with God or earn His love. God loves you!
Fasting as a response to a crisis in life or as a spiritual discipline out of delight in the Lord has many benefits. In Isaiah 58, God promises guidance and restoration. Where have you suffered lost in life? Jesus says in Mark 9 that some miracles require prayer and fasting. Is there an area of your life that you believe is under attack? The book of Ezra is a wonderful story of restoration, revival, and protection when Ezra repented, fasted and prayed. After Daniel fasted, he was given understanding (Daniel 9). If you need a deeper understanding about what is happening in your life, I would suggest a day of fasting and prayer. There are other biblical examples of benefit derived from fasting as well.
If you decide to fast begin with a short fast. Skip a meal and spend that time in prayer. Or decide to fast from sunup to sundown, or 24 hours. You should drink a lot of water when fasting. Unless you have a medical problem missing a meal or a day of food is not going to hurt you. If you have any concerns talk with your physician.
Just a thought, shorter fasts are more challenging sometimes. It seems that hunger pains for many people diminish after three days. Be careful when breaking a fast from all food by eating something light, like a bowl of broth or thin soups.
Some people do extended fasts from food but drink fruit or vegetable juice. A friend of mine did a prayerful 40 day juice fast. He told me that after a few days he didn’t miss food at all. He grew in his faith.
Prepare for your fasts by weaning yourself from sweets and eating lighter. If you are going to fast from caffeine let me strongly encourage you to begin weaning yourself from caffeine slowly a month ahead of time to avoid painful headaches.
Fast with friends! Ask some friends to be your prayer partner and fast and pray together. You will encourage one another and grow in faith together. “Announce a time of fasting; call the people together for a solemn meeting. Bring the leaders and all the people of the land into the Temple of the LORD your God, and cry out to him there.” Joel 1:14
A couple of other thoughts. Stay focused on the Lord, pray, praise, and worship the Lord. Drawing near to God is why you are fasting. Drink lots of water. If you fast for more than a day, be sure and rest. Take a nap during the day. There are some physical benefits to fasting as well. I use an app named Zero, designed to track your fast and motivate you. You might find it useful.
If you are comfortable with doing so, please let me know if you are fasting.