Fasting is less about what we’re giving up and much more about what we’re making room for. When we fast, we exchange what we need to survive for what we need to live—more of God. Here are five spiritual benefits to fasting:

1) A soul cleansing. How often we forget that our bodies are the temple of the Lord—especially when deciding what to eat! Fasting is a great time to remember the spiritual connection we have to our physical bodies.

2) A new desire for God. When we acknowledge through fasting that we need God to live, and to live more abundantly, we can begin to desire God in a new way.

3) A deeper praise. Because the body does not have to do the work of digestion, it has more energy to focus on other things. In the same vein, since we are not consumed by what we are going to eat next and when, we have more energy to devote to God.

4) A sensitivity to God’s voice. The New Testament prophetess Anna is praised in the book of Luke for being a devoted servant to God and His temple.

5) A new satisfaction. When you finish your fast, renewed, full of energy, detoxed, with a new desire, a new praise and a sensitivity to God’s voice, you’ll find that the absence of food was small in comparison to what you gained.

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