being sarah, my faith

preparing for january 2018’s 21 days of prayer + fasting

Since fully participating in 21 Days of Prayer + Fasting back in 2016, every year has looked different. The concept of “fasting” was not one that I was taught growing up, so the first year, I had to retrain my thoughts about it (for those who are like I was and don’t know anything about fasting, “fasting” is just giving something up that keeps you from spending time with God for a certain amount of time. The most common thing people give up is food, but it can be anything – social media, TV, video games, candy – whatever will be enough of a struggle that you have to intentionally think “no, I’m giving that up for [xx] amount of days so that I can be closer to God.” And then you pray or spend time with God during that time instead. Does that make sense?). The second year, I had to make sure I didn’t buy into the lie that God was disappointed in me because I wasn’t able to participate fully due to having a two month old. I was a new mom and needed to give myself a lot of grace and thankfully, God’s grace is abundant.

 

With those previous experiences in mind, I’ve done a lot of thinking and praying about what I need to do this time around. Since I’m pregnant, a complete fast (also known as a “water only fast”) is not an option for me. So I’ve been asking God to place his finger on an area that I need to let go of (fast) during these 21 days.

 

Social Media is definitely one that came to my mind, and was confirmed by Aaron when I asked him what he thought I should fast. I don’t go on it a ton, but I am easily trapped in the game of comparison and “trying to be like them” rather than embracing how God has created me and cultivating the calling he has placed on me (and my family). It’ll be a good distraction for me to set aside so that I can clearly hear God and grow in my confidence and my calling.

{side note: social media does not include the blog. I will still be blogging and plan on posting the prayer service messages every Friday as well as sharing whatever God places on my heart.}

 

Aaron and I are also fasting Netflix. I know using that time differently in the evening will be interesting and I’m excited to see how God uses that time we’ll have together.

 

I’ve done a version of the Daniel Fast every year, but this year I might as well just call it “cutting out sugar and junk.” Like I said before, being pregnant, I definitely cannot completely fast food, but the Daniel Fast has so many recipes (thank you Pinterest and recipe books) that it really will just be a healthier form of eating. I’m not going to be super strict on not eating meat and dairy, but this season will mainly force me to think ahead to plan my meals and make sure they are well balanced, which is a disciple I need to have.

 

In addition to those things, I will be waking up early to attend the prayer service (in the living room because we don’t live close to campus and if I did go, I would be late for work), which will a great kick-off to my day.

 

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I am very excited and expectant to dedicate the beginning of 2018 this way.

Can’t wait to see what God does.

2 thoughts on “preparing for january 2018’s 21 days of prayer + fasting”

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