7 Ideas for Teaching Children to Fast in Meaningful Ways

7 Ideas for Teaching Children to Fast in Meaningful Ways

We believe that fasting is a way to draw closer to God and seek His guidance and direction in our lives. When we fast, we abstain from food and drink for a set period of time, usually 24 hours. This helps us focus on putting spiritual matters at the forefront of our minds and listen for the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

But it can be hard to go without food or drink for 24 hours, especially for children and youth. Teaching kids/teens to fast in meaningful ways can be a challenging but rewarding task. Here are a few suggestions for how to do so:

  1. Start small: For young children, it may be challenging to fast for a full 24 hours. Consider starting with shorter periods of time, such as skipping a meal or two, and gradually increasing the length of the fast as they get older.

  2. Explain the purpose of fasting: Help your children to understand the purpose of fasting, whether it's for personal spiritual growth, seeking guidance from God, or showing solidarity with those who are suffering or in need. This can help to give them a sense of meaning and purpose as they fast.

  3. Encourage them to pray and meditate: Fasting is an excellent opportunity to focus on one's relationship with God. Encourage your children to pray and meditate during their fast, and help them to develop their own personal prayer practices.

  4. Model the behavior: Children often learn best by observing the actions of their parents. Be sure to model good fasting behavior yourself, and talk with your children about your own fasting experiences.

  5. Offer support and encouragement: Fasting can be challenging, especially for children who may be less accustomed to it. Offer support and encouragement to your children as they fast, and be patient with them as they learn and grow.

  6. Make it a family activity: Consider making fasting a family activity, with everyone participating together. This can create a sense of unity and support, and can help to make the experience more enjoyable and meaningful for everyone.

  7. Make a meal to remember: Prepare for the fast by making your child's favorite dessert as the last thing they eat before your fast begins. Then close the fast by preparing their favorite meal. Talk to them about how blessed they are to have access to their favorite things so easily.
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