Fasting HandoutP-R-A-Y VersesAdditional Prayer Experience
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Before you Meet: Recommended 24-Hour Fast
In order to make the most of your prayer experience with your Life Group group, we recommend that you spend time preparing to hear from God. One of the disciplines that helps with this is fasting. Fasting is a way we eliminate the noise and distractions of the world around us and focus more completely on hearing God’s voice. While we fast, we are reminded and become more aware of our dependence on God. By fasting, we intensify our prayers, place ourselves in a position of submission, and become more sensitive to hearing God’s voice.
Preparing for Your Prayer Time (10-12 MINUTES)
“Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.” – Isaiah 65:24
The Church of Scotland defines prayer this way: “Prayer is an offering of our desires unto God for things agreeable to His will, in the name of Christ, with confession of our sins and thankful acknowledgment of His mercies.” This summarizes well the components of prayer. Our hearts should be set right before praying and our desires within God’s will in all things we bring to Him.
ASK: What uncertainties or expectation do you have coming into this prayer experience?
As you begin, consider playing a worship song and reading a devotional or passage of Scripture (Psalms 8, 19, 34, 121 and/or 138 are great options) to prepare your heart and mind for time in prayer. Move into a space where you will not be interrupted.
Pray for the group as you begin, asking God to speak and be present through His Spirit.
Individual Prayer Time (60 MINUTES)
Alternate Prayer Options Attached
Begin praying. Take time to listen to what God wants to say to you. You can use the following example of prayer structure and content. Remember prayer is a personal discipline. This is only an example of one way to pray. Write down any thoughts that come to mind so you can refer back and see how God answered your prayers.
Praise/Thanksgiving/Worship: Consider listening to a worship song and picturing God as He is in Heaven – on His throne, surrounded by angels, worthy of all our worship and praise. Use this image to inspire your prayer to God, as you worship Him. Thank Him for the good gifts in your life. Focus also on the good gift of salvation, and how the good news changes everything for you.
Repent/Confession: Spend time asking the Holy Spirit to reveal areas in your life where you have been tempted to hide or minimize what you know to be ungodly habits or actions. Allow God to know your innermost thoughts, and come into this space knowing that He loves you, He has already saved you, and you are being saved. We confess, and He is faithful and just to forgive us. Allow the power of God’s forgiveness to transform your heart, and remember the new identities that He gives you: chosen, righteous, His child, a new creation, called and given a purpose.
- Family, friends, specific needs from your journal
- For your Life Group group prayer requests
- For your church and the Church in the world, to accomplish His will on earth as it is in Heaven
- For your purpose
- For those with whom God wants you to tell your story
- Our community
- Our nation and leaders
- The world and world leaders
- What God wants your group to do, where you should serve
- People in whom God wants you to invest
- In all things, pray that you are within His will
Yield: Ask God to help you surrender these requests to him. He is your good shepherd that cares for you and guides you into the good he has for you.
Debrief and Celebration (45 MINUTES)
After your prayer time, take time to share a meal together to break your fast. Share how you heard God’s voice, what this focused prayer time meant to you, and how it affected you. Share how the fasting time prepared you and whether your prayer time felt more intense from this discipline. Share any other relevant feelings or revelations from God during this time in fasting and prayer and if you want to continue to add this to your life on a more regular basis.