21 Days of Prayer and Fasting
The pastors of MacArthur Blvd Baptist Church are calling our church body to embark on a 21-day corporate fast from February 1-21, 2021.
A 21-day Prayer and Fasting Guide with daily scriptures and prayers for you to use in your time with God will be available at the church on January 31st, and a PDF form is also available to download above. Or if you would like to receive daily texts with each day’s scripture and prayer focus from February 1-21, text FAST to 972-465-9229.
Fasting is voluntarily going without food—or some other regularly enjoyed gift from God—for spiritual purposes. In short, we fast from food so we can feast on God. Fasting is not our attempt to manipulate God to do what we want Him to do. Fasting does not bring God into alignment with our desires but brings our desires into alignment with God’s.
Why are we embarking on a 21-day corporate fast? Two words: Dependency and desire. We are fasting because we are aware of our utter dependency upon God. We can do nothing without God. We cannot endure trials, be of one heart and mind, fight sin, grow in prayer, love our neighbors, or reach our world without God. We need God like we need food. And we don’t just need Him; we desire God. We know God is more satisfying than food or anything else this world can offer. We long to be closer to Him, to experience greater degrees of His manifest presence, to know Him more intimately. It is the combination of dependency and desire that moves us to fast. During this fast we are seeking the active presence of God to bless our church, resulting in greater intimacy, purity, unity, and power in our witness.
During the 21 days between February 1-21, we will engage corporately in the “Daniel Fast,” modeled after the fast of the prophet Daniel. In this type of fast you remove meat, sweets, and bread from your diet, consuming water and juice for fluids and fruits and vegetables for food. You can find a list of foods you can eat and foods to avoid for this fast below. If you are unable to participate in the Daniel Fast, we still encourage you to participate in fasting with us during these 21 days. Details for a “partial fast” and “distraction” fast can also be found below.
You can click on the picture above for an example meal plan & recipes.
Foods to Eat
- Fruits of any kind
- Nuts: Almonds, cashews, macadamia nuts, peanuts, pecans, pine nuts, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds
- Whole Grains: barley, brown rice, oats, millet, whole wheat, quinoa (must be made without yeast or sugar)
- Legumes: black beans, black eyed peas, cannellini beans, garbanzo beans, kidney beans, lentils, pinto beans, split peas
- Vegetables of any kind
- Beverages: water, V8, juiced vegetables and fruit
- Other: spices, salt, pepper, seasonings, soy products, tofu
Foods to Avoid
- Meat: beef, fish, pork, poultry, etc
- Dairy Products: butter, cheese, cream, eggs, milk
- Sweeteners: agave nectar, artificial sweeteners, cane juice, honey, molasses, raw sugar, granulated sugar, brown sugar, sweet stuff in general
- Leavened Bread: baked goods, Ezekiel bread, any bread with yeast
- Deep Fried foods: chips, french fries, potato chips, etc.
- Solid Fats: lard, margarine, shortening
- Beverages: alcohol, caffeine, carbonated drinks, coffee, energy drinks, green tea, herbal tea, sweet tea
- You can fast from one particular meal during the day, setting that time apart to meet with God. For example, you may choose to use your lunch time daily. Another option is to fast daily from sunup to sundown. With this option you can fast from morning and afternoon meals and then eat dinner in the evenings.
- While fasting usually involves going without food, removing other unnecessary distractions from your life for the purpose of seeking intimacy with God is also spiritually beneficial. If you cannot fast from food due to medical conditions, then you may consider removing social media, TV, or some other activity in your life that can become a distraction in your pursuit of God. Even with this fast, remember, the goal is not merely to remove something from our life but also to intentionally seek the Lord.