Lent is the perfect time to use prayer and various forms of fasting to draw closer to God. If you’re unsure how to fast for Lent, check out our tips.
Fasting is one of the most powerful ways we can connect to God; it gives us a way to peace and happiness and brings us closer to fining true joy. You will discover that self-denial of the material things you take for granted will lead to a greater sense of wholeness. This is why Christians have historically fasted for thousands of years, and there’s no more appropriate time to do this than the six weeks between Ash Wednesday and Easter.
Lent should be used as a time to get rid of whatever is standing between you and God, it doesn’t have to be simply fasting from food. Many Christians are now creative in what they give up in order to get close to God.
Fast from money
Lent can be used as a period of extreme budgeting, giving you time to have a long and hard think about your relationship to material possessions and how it may be disrupting your relationship with God. Fasting from money means that you spend as little as possible, paying your bills on time and not spending any unnecessary amounts of money. You’ll be shocked at how much money you save, leaving you with a lot to pray about.
When Easter arrives, you will most likely find you have extra funds. Pray to God about how to use it, whether you give it away to charity, make a commitment to a good cause or simply start a savings account. Whatever you decide to do, you fast from spending will lead you to redefine your relationship to the material world.
Fast from people
There are Catholic teachers who take to a hermitage for Lent, allowing themselves six weeks of uninterrupted prayer, study, reflection and silence. For many of us, that simply isn’t possible, but you can take other steps to devote yourself more fully to God.
Try saying ‘no’ to social events and stay away from your personal emails and social media accounts. Except for going to church on a Sunday, keep your time to yourself and to God. Whilst you may feel rude at first, rest assured that you’re not; you’re simply following the Christian tradition of observing times of solitude.
Give up your workday lunch routine
You may not be able to fast from food from food for a long period of time, but giving up one meal, such as lunch gives you more time to devote yourself to God.
Whether you spend your lunch hours surfing the net from your desk or chatting with colleagues, Lent is the perfect excuse to change your habits. Take a walk and pray or meditate on scripture. You could read an online Bible or devotional if you are at your desk.
Fast from unnecessary waste
Whether you’re fasting from food or devoting yourself to silence, you’re limiting the amount of waste in your life. It’s important to remember, however, that Lent isn’t about stopping something bad from happening; it’s about becoming closer to God by giving something good up.
In this instance, you need to be careful about how you use everything to minimise waste. By redefining how you use and move through the Earth, you can come closer to God.