About Prayer & Fasting

How to Pray the 40 Days

The Bible is full of promises about prayer rooted in the belief that God hears us, answers us and invites us to participate in the answers He lovingly gives.

In the Old Testament, we see this promise: "If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven..." (2 Chronicles 7:14a). In the New Testament, we see this invitation to pray: "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God" (Philippians 4:6).

In other words, the God of Jesus, the God of the Scriptures, hears and answers prayer! There is no prayer too big, no prayer too small, to pray—especially if our greatest desire is to see the will of God be done here “…on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:9-13).

In the Bible, prayer is sometimes accompanied by fasting. Fasting is willingly going without food, or a portion of food, for a set period of time, in order to invest our energies and focus in prayer. One does not need to fast to pray with hope and intensity, but it can be a helpful spiritual rhythm to add to our experience of God in prayer. Please see the Fasting Basics resource for more detailed information on this practice and talk to a physician before attempting any type of food fast.

However you choose to pray and fast, it is exciting that you’ve joined in for these 40 days of prayer and fasting as we say Come, Holy Spirit—in our personal lives, in the life of our local church, and in the life of the Vineyard Movement!
This “season” of prayer and fasting covers 40 days, and it might be helpful to have some structure—like a scaffolding—to hang your prayers on as you go.

We suggest that each day as you come to prayer, you may want to follow a simple, 4-step process inspired by Jeremiah 6:16a and based on the words stand, look, ask and walk:

STAND – Take 30 seconds of silence or worship to become aware of the presence of Jesus.
LOOK – Pray the prayer "Come, Holy Spirit" and read the daily Scripture.
ASK – Pray the prayer prompts for each day with confidence.
WALK – Read the Responding to God section, act as you are led, and say “thank you, Holy Spirit” for guiding your time.