Welcome to our annual 21 Days of Prayer & Fasting Guide! Whatever fasting looks like for you, we encourage you to focus less on “what am I fasting from” and more on “what am I feasting on?” Fasting simply allows you to create space to feast more on God in prayer and Scripture. We hope this guide will help you in that endeavor.
What is Fasting? Fasting is the spiritual practice of abstaining from food or other activities for a specific period of time so you can focus more on God. Fasting is a tangible way to deny ourselves—to declare that God is the center of our lives and everything else bows to Him. Jesus said, “Whoever wants to follow me must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” In fact, Jesus fasted as a spiritual practice (Matthew 4:1-11). That’s the main reason we do an annual fast together. As people who follow Jesus, we want to follow the way He lived and practiced His faith.
How do I fast? There are various ways to fast:
- Give up food and only drink water or clear liquids.
- Do a “Daniel fast” where you abstain from meat, dairy, desserts, soda, etc. (See Daniel 1 & 10:2-3 and Google for details).
- Fast a specific meal each day or a particular type of food (sugar, coffee, etc.).
- Fast from things that hold a significant place in your life: social media, shopping, technology, certain types of music, books (other than the Bible), etc.
What if I have health issues? Don’t fast if you’re pregnant, diabetic, have heart disease, or any other medical condition that adds risk to fasting from food. Remember, you’re not under any obligation to fast food. It’s not a requirement for a close connection to God. Instead, find a safe alternative for removing material distractions from your life so you can better focus on your heavenly Father.
WEEK 1 | The Hovering Spirit Who Forms Us
Sunday, January 15
Scripture: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. (Genesis 1:1-2)
Prayer: God, at the beginning of this New Year, may Your Spirit hover over the darkness and chaos in my life and in the world around me. Bring order and form according to Your purposes. Amen.
Monday, January 16
Scripture: The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. (Luke 1:35)
Prayer: Father, just as Your Spirit overshadowed Mary, overshadow my entire being—bringing fullness of life as Jesus is fully formed in me. Amen.
Tuesday, January 17
Scripture: My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you, how I wish I could be with you now and change my tone, because I am perplexed about you! (Galatians 4:19-20)
Prayer: God, thank you for spiritual leaders and mentors who desire Your best for us, offering gentle correction and wise guidance as Your Spirit brings transformation. Amen.
Wednesday, January 18
Scripture: Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. (Phil 2:12-13)
Prayer: God, lead and empower us to work out and live into our salvation, our everlasting relationship with You through Your Spirit and by Your grace. Give us the desire and determination to love others and commit ourselves to all that is good. Amen.
Thursday, January 19
Scripture: Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ (John 3:5-7)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, as you have given me a physical birth, you have also given me a spiritual birth. Awaken my spirit to Your Spirit. As your Holy Spirit resides in me, lead me into the new life You have prepared. Amen.
Friday, January 20
Scripture: I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. (Ezekiel 36:26-27)
Prayer: Father, thank you for the Spirit who faithfully stirs within me a desire for Your ways and forms a heart of faithful obedience. Amen.
Saturday, January 21
Scripture: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Prayer: Jesus, thank you for making me a new creation in You. Your life is now mine, and my old ways are no more. Give me eyes to see this reality and walk in it. Amen.
WEEK 2 | The Indwelling Spirit Who Advocates For Us
Sunday, January 22
Scripture: If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. (John 14:15-17)
Prayer: Thank you, Heavenly Father, for the gift of Your Spirit to dwell within me as my Comforter and Counselor, guiding me into all truth. Amen.
Monday, January 23
Scripture: Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you. (Deu 31:6)
Prayer: Lord, thank you for the assurance of the Advocate who goes with me this day. May I sense Your surrounding presence before, behind, and beside me each step. Amen.
Tuesday, January 24
Scripture: Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. (Rom 8:26)
Prayer: Abba Father, thank you for the indwelling Spirit who knows my heart better than I do. I trust He is interceding for me with groanings that cannot be articulated. Amen.
Wednesday, January 25
Scripture: What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. (1 Cor 2:12-13)
Prayer: Father, as Your Spirit dwells within, counsel me in Your wisdom. Open my heart and mind to the spiritual realities of Your Kingdom. Amen.
Thursday, January 26
Scripture: Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own. (1 Cor 6:19)
Prayer: Lord, help me to walk in the knowledge and reality that Your Spirit dwells within my mortal body, bring everlasting life. May my entire being glorify You in word and deed. Amen.
Friday, January 27
Scripture: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Gal 5:22-23)
Prayer: Father, as Your Spirit makes His home in me, may my life produce the fruit as evidence of His indwelling. May those around me taste and see that You are good. Amen.
Saturday, January 28
Scripture: But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. (John 14:26)
Prayer: Father, thank you for sending us the Holy Spirit to teach us what we need to know and to remind us of Jesus’ life and words. Thank you for helping me grow this week in intimacy with and power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
WEEK 3 |The Empowering Spirit Who Sends Us
Sunday, January 29
Scripture: But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. (Acts 1:8)
Prayer: Lord, help me to walk not in my strength but empowered by the Holy Spirit. Open my eyes to the opportunities I have to testify of You to the people close to me, far from me, and who I see as different from me. Amen.
Monday, January 30
Scripture: The Spirit of the Lord spoke through me; his word was on my tongue. (2 Sam 23:2)
Prayer: Lord, as I go throughout this week, let Your Spirit speak through me to the hearts of my family, neighbors, coworkers, and strangers. Amen.
Tuesday, January 31
Scripture: “But now be strong, Zerubbabel,” declares the Lord. “Be strong, Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest. Be strong, all you people of the land,” declares the Lord, “and work. For I am with you,” declares the Lord Almighty. “This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt. And my Spirit remains among you. Do not fear.” (Haggai 2:4-5)
Prayer: Lord, may Your Spirit dwell richly within Your people today, eradicating the fear that tries to slow us down from fulfilling Your purposes. May we remain strong in You as we go about the work of expanding the Kingdom You’ve established. Amen.
Wednesday, February 1
Scripture: But as for me, I am filled with power, with the Spirit of the LORD, and with justice and might, to declare to Jacob his transgression, to Israel his sin. (Micah 3:8)
Prayer: God, as I walk in the fullness of Your Spirit today, may I declare Your righteousness with my words and deeds, turning from the sin that lurks about to ensnare Your people. Amen.
Thursday, February 2
Scripture: Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20)
Prayer: Lord, continue to develop in me the heart of a disciple-maker. Help me to surrender my agenda and partner with You in the work You have already begun in those around me. Amen.
Friday, February 3
Scripture: Now the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “See, I have called by name Bezalel, the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. And I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship, to create artistic designs for work in gold, in silver, and in bronze, and in the cutting of stones for settings, and in the carving of wood, so that he may work in all kinds of craftsmanship. (Exodus 31:1-5)
Prayer: Lord, thank you for creating us as creators, reflecting Your image. Raise up Spirit-empowered artists and designers of all crafts so that people might see Your beauty etched in the ordinary places and surrender to You in worship. Amen.
Saturday, February 4
Scripture: The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life. (Rev 22:17)
Prayer: God, as I daily hear Your invitation to come and drink from the water of life, may my life invite others to come. May they have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying. Amen.