Lent is a time marked by a period of fasting, repentance, and renewal in preparation for Easter, the resurrection of Jesus.

Lent is often observed with prayer and fasting. Fasting is us, as humans, denying ourselves of one thing (or many things) so that we can say yes to the Greatest Thing. That greatest thing being intimacy with God. Fasting is an invitation to deny our hunger of the flesh so that we may quench the thirst of our spirit.

Practically speaking, we all hunger and thirst for something. Whether you have been walking with Jesus for ten minutes or ten years, we all hunger and thirst for something. Sometimes we hunger for a burger, other times we hunger for things that could cause damage to our interpersonal relationships and our integrity. One way or another, if we’re willing to be honest with ourselves, we all have something that could potentially take the seat on the throne of our lives, the place where Jesus should always be seated.

What is that for you? During this season of Lent, we invite you to spend time fasting to create habits and rhythms that help you regularly and routinely return to Christ.

Remember – there are different expressions of fasting (ie: foods, drinks, TV time, social media, etc), but all with the same spirit; to express utter dependence on God. Whether for spiritual renewal or practical needs, fasting pushes us to the place where you realize that whatever it is that you’re seeking cannot happen separate from a move of God.

What is fasting?

A biblical fast is a chance to temporarily say “no” to the physical food of this world, in order to say “yes” to the spiritual food from the Holy Spirit. It’s an invitation to discover how our appetite for eating or drinking is also tied to our appetites for things in our daily lives. So in fasting we remove physical food as a way to address the unhealthy relationships we might have to social, intellectual, spiritual, or emotional “foods” as well.

Types of Fasts

Complete Fast
In this fast, you only drink liquids, typically water and/or light juices. Broth or soup may be considered as options, too.

Selective Fast
In this fast, you remove certain elements from your diet. The Daniel Fast is an example of abstaining from meat, sweets, or bread; drink water and juice, and eat a variety of fruits and vegetables.

Partial Fast
In this fast, you abstain from eating any type of food in the morning and afternoon. Fast during specific times of the day, e.g. from sunup to sundown.

Soul Fast
This fast is common for anyone new to fasting food, those with health issues that prevent them from fasting food, or those wanting to refocus specific areas of life that are out of balance. Suggestions: abstain from engaging in social media, shopping, TV, etc.


As you fast...

Here are some additional aspects for your journey through Lent.

Your Bible

Along with fasting, regularly anchor yourself in the Word of God.

A Journal

Write down your experiences while you are reading God’s word and what God may reveal to you during your times of Bible study and prayer.

Prayer Guides

Use different prayer methods to engage Jesus in deeper ways like the prayer of examen.

The Examen


Read books about spiritual formation:

  • Prophetic Lament by Soong Chan Rah
  • Sacred Rhythms by Ruth Haley Barton
  • The Way of the Heart by Henri Nouwen
  • The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard
  • Brave by Dr. Brenda Salter McNeil
  • Emotionally Healthy Spirituality by Pete Scazzero
  • The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence

Why is it 40 days?

Alister E. McGrath writes in his book, “An Introduction to Christianity,” Lent is based on the period of forty days spent by Jesus in the wilderness before the beginning of his public ministry in Galilee. Just as Jesus fasted for forty days, so his followers were encouraged to do the same thing. A period of forty days of fasting before Easter was thus encouraged. He goes on to say, “An issue which needs to be noted at this point concerns the length of Lent. The period [between] Ash Wednesday and Easter Day is actually 46 days…The answer lies in the tradition, established at a very early stage in the development of Christianity, that every Sunday was to be regarded as a celebration of the resurrection of Christ. For this reason, fasting was forbidden on Sundays. The period of 46 days thus consists of 40 days of fasting.

When is Lent over?

Holy Saturday (the day before Easter) marks the official end of the Lent Season.