Ezr 8:21 Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river of Ahava, that we might afflict ourselves before our God, to seek of him a right way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance.I don't remember where I read that Matthew 6 is about the Christian walk: Give, fast and pray. Fasting should be a crucial part of our walk. Fasting is a way of sanctifying yourself before the Lord with a view to getting an answer on a specific petition. Here are some online resources concerning fasting:
Ezr 8:23 So we fasted and besought our God for this: and he was intreated of us.
Releasing God's Power Through Fasting by Bill Bright
Jentezen Franklin Fasting Movement
But you can find more resources by doing a google search and also a word study in the Bible concerning fasts and fasting.
Some things to keep in mind when considering a fast:
1.) It is recommended that you see a doctor before entering into any fasts. I personally disagree because I trust my Heavenly Father more as my physician than any earthly doctor, but you need to make your own decision concerning that.
2.) DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT do a 40 day fast your first time out, unless specifically told to by the Lord. Work up to it by doing some 3 day and 10 day fasts before hand. Do not do a no water fast for more than three days, that is very dangerous.
3.) Don't make excuses. I hear the "I can't because I am diabetic" or whatever. I come from a family of diabetics, and believe me, we can EAT! There are many ways you can fast and still maintain your blood sugar levels. If needed you could just fast between meals (or do a Daniel Fast which is: Eat no meat, no sweets and no bread. Drink water and juice. Eat fruits and vegetables.) It is recommended that you allow yourself juices on some of the longer fasts.
There are several different types of fasts:
1.) Fasting till evening - Many times the congregation of Israel as a whole would fast all day and then break the fast at evening.
2.) One day, 3 day, 7 days, 10 days, 21 days and 40 days.
Frankly you can do a fast for how ever long you want, but do not go over 40 days because that is very dangerous. You should seek the Lord as to what kind of fast He would have you do. I tried to do a fast where I only drank water and I got such an extreme headache that I ended up having to eat something. So now I usually allow myself juices in order to not have a headache, and if I just want to drink water and have no coffee or juice, I will only fast until 3pm because I can do that length of time without a headache.
I personally like a 3 day fast with juices and water. Recently I had the house to myself while my parents were away so I did a two day fast with one or two specific situations in mind to bring before the Lord. I had answers to both before the end of the 2nd day. (But finish your fast, don't just break the fast because you got your answer!)
There is much much more on the subject of fasting that I do not have space for in this blog post. Seek the Lord and be smart - do not put yourself in danger.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you so much for the fast, for a way to sanctify ourselves and draw close to you. thank you for being so awesome and wonderful. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.